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Katie Bircher

About Katie Bircher

Katie Bircher, associate editor at The Horn Book, Inc., is a former bookseller and holds an MA in children's literature from Simmons College.

Week in Review, July 18th-22nd

Week in Review

This week on… Richard Peck Talks with Roger — our inaugural video TWR! Reviews of the Week: Picture Book: Mr. Hulot at the Beach by David Merveille Fiction: As Brave As You by Jason Reynolds Nonfiction: Sabotage: The Mission to Destroy 
Hitler’s Atomic Bomb by Neal Bascomb App: Toca Tailor: Fairy Tales Read Roger: Tribal trials […]



Protagonists are having terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days in these new and upcoming picture books: (What’s with the pissy penguins? I thought they were supposed to have happy feet.) Fortunately, these grumpy characters find ways to turn their frowns upside-down. The protagonist of Jory John and Lane Smith’s Penguin Problems gets a reality […]


tenth doctor 2

While fact-checking this Wednesday’s Richard Peck Talks with Roger interview on The Best Man, I had a moment of déjà vu. Navy pinstripe suit + red Chucks? Either protagonist Archer is a big Doctor Who fan, or cover artist Michael Arnold is. (Good choice, by the way: Ten is my favorite Doctor, too.) Sign up […]

Week in Review, July 11th-15th

Week in Review

This week on… We’re celebrating the 2016 ALA Youth Media Award–winning authors and illustrators!  Mind the Gap Awards: the books that didn’t win at ALA Reviews of 2016 Mind the Gap Award winners See all of our 2016 ALA coverage here. July’s Notes: 5Q for Lauren Wolk, middle-grade historical fiction, preschool books about milestones, […]

GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine app review

goldieblox title

I first became aware of toy start-up GoldieBlox when I saw its smart commercial “The Princess Machine,” in which a group of young girls engineer a complex Rube Goldberg machine using (mostly) stereotypically “girl” toys. The mission of GoldieBlox and inventor/CEO Debbie Sterling is “to disrupt the pink aisle and inspire the future generation of […]

July’s Notes is on the way!

july 16 notes

July’s Notes from the Horn Book newsletter will hit your inbox any minute. This month, we chat with Lauren Wolk about her new historical novel Wolf Hollow. You’ll also find more new historical novels about kids living through difficult times picture books about preschool milestones nonfiction apps to help primary/intermediate students beat the summer learning […]

Apps to beat the summer slump

professor astro cat

These nonfiction apps introduce new information, and reinforce familiar concepts with a fresh approach, and strengthen developing skills to encourage engaged learning throughout summer — and all year long. In Professor Astro Cat’s Solar System (based on the 2013 nonfiction book Professor Astro Cat’s Frontiers of Space), cat cosmonaut Professor Astro Cat takes you on […]

“What are you doing after graduation?”

bliss_meet me here

What high-school senior doesn’t dread that question? Young adulthood is full of change and daunting decisions; even those with solid post-graduation plans may feel as much uncertainty as excitement. The protagonists of these new novels are on the cusp of similarly life-changing moments. In Bryan Bliss’s Meet Me Here, Thomas watches his classmates celebrate graduation […]

Week in Review, July 4th-8th

Week in Review

This week on… We’re celebrating the 2016 ALA Youth Media Award–winning authors and illustrators!  “2015 in Review: The Year in Words” by Elizabeth Bird “2015 in Review: The Year in Pictures” by Julie Danielson “2016 Mind the Gap Awards“: the books that didn’t win at ALA “ALA and Harry Potter” and “ALA Extras” on […]

Sago Mini Forest Flyer app review

forest flyer title

My colleagues and I are big Sago Mini fans, and we’re slowly working our way through the developer’s entire oeuvre. Next up, an oldie but a goodie: Forest Flyer (2013), another exploratory play app in the mold of Ocean Swimmer and Fairy Tales. Choose a spring day or a wintry (vaguely Christmas-y) one to explore. […]