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POW! A knock-out punch!

Last week’s blog rant post from the Horn Book’s usually level-headed if sleep-deprived executive editor called out picture book reviewers for making ridiculous promises in their reviews of bedtime books. You know, stuff like: “This gentle read-aloud will calm young listeners and lull them to sleep.” Elissa wasn’t having it. “Do these books’ powers of […]

Review of Bulldozer Helps Out

Bulldozer Helps Out by Candace Fleming; illus. by Eric Rohmann Preschool    Dlouhy/Atheneum    40 pp. 5/17    978-1-4814-5894-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-5895-5    $10.99 The construction-site gang from Bulldozer’s Big Day (rev. 5/15) is on the job again. “I can help,” little Bulldozer says hopefully to the big trucks hard at work. But Dump Truck, Cement Mixer, and […]

On Elizabeth Wein’s “BGHB at 50: Saffy’s Angel by Hilary McKay” (from 2017)

I love Elizabeth Wein’s appreciation of Hilary McKay’s Saffy’s Angel, a 2002 Boston Globe–Horn Book Honor Book for fiction. Wein, herself the recipient of two BGHB Honors (among many other accolades), treats us not only to her perceptive thoughts about McKay’s masterful family stories but also to a glimpse into her own relationship with her […]

Review of Cricket in the Thicket: Poems About Bugs

Cricket in the Thicket: Poems About Bugs by Carol Murray; illus. by Melissa Sweet Primary    Ottaviano/Holt    40 pp. 5/17    978-0-8050-9818-1    $17.99 Twenty-nine common insects and arachnids (from ants to spiny-back spiders) are on display in Murray’s lively poems and Sweet’s inviting mixed-media illustrations. The titular cricket opens the proceedings in a poem mimicking an elusive […]

On Robin Smith

The Horn Book family is mourning the loss of one of our own, the inimitable Robin Smith who passed away last week after a battle with bone cancer. In addition to her day job as a second-grade teacher at the Ensworth School in Nashville, Robin was a longtime Magazine reviewer and contributor as well as […]

Review of The Pants Project

The Pants Project by Cat Clarke Middle School    Sourcebooks Jabberwocky    267 pp.    g 3/17    978-1-4926-3809-4    $16.99 Eleven-year-old Liv and best friend Maisie begin sixth grade at a new middle school with a strict uniform policy. At Bankridge, all students are required to wear a “white shirt, a tie, and a […]

On Kathleen T. Horning’s “On Spies and Purple Socks and Such” (from 2005)

“Sometimes you have to lie. But to yourself you must always tell the truth.” —Ole Golly from Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh June is Pride Month (whether or not the White House recognizes it) and LGBTQIA folx and their allies are holding their rainbow flags — of various stripes — high. In the January/February […]

2017 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award Winners and Honorees Announced

If you missed Roger Sutton and Kwame Alexander’s announcement of the 2017 Boston Globe–Horn Book Award winners and honor books last week (or if you’d like to relive the moment), watch their entertaining performance—er, presentation, complete with an Oscar-worthy Faye and Warren homage. And here are more details about the winners, including links to their […]

LIVE! From New York! It’s the 2017 Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards announcement!

Today’s the day! Watch LIVE at 4:45 PM EST as Roger Sutton and 2015 Newbery Award–winning author Kwame Alexander (The Crossover) announce the winners of the 2017 Boston Globe–Horn Book Awards. Have we mentioned that this year is the 50th anniversary of the Awards? Maybe once or twice. We are very excited. As Roger said, […]

On Robin Smith’s “Teaching New Readers to Love Books” (from 2003)

“Despite the pressures of parents and the winds of educational change, I do not teach children to read because it is good for them. To me, books are not meant to be the path to Harvard or even the best high school. I do not think of them as ‘tools for learning,’ a phrase I […]