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Presenting… “The Straight Poop on Potty Humor” (from 2017)

If you spend any amount of time with kids under, say ten (dear god, I hope it stops after ten…), you are undoubtedly waist deep in potty humor. Here’s one of my kids’ favorites: Knock knock! Who’s there? Europe! Europe who? Hey! You’re a poo! Actually, it was funny the first time we heard it. […]

On Lois Lowry’s “Look” (from 1997)

“I never walk past that place without thinking how private, powerful, and memorable a moment it is, in the life of a child, when the shape of letters takes on meaning and a door of the world opens.” It’s been twenty years, but I still remember the thrill I felt as I read Lois Lowry’s […]

Review of Bob, Not Bob!

Bob, Not Bob! by Liz Garton Scanlon and Audrey Vernick; illus. by Matthew Cordell Preschool, Primary    Disney-Hyperion    40 pp. 2/17    978-1-4847-2302-9    $17.99 Little Louie has a big head cold. “All he wanted (besides maybe some hot chocolate) was his mother.” But with his stuffy nose, his calls for “MOM!” sound like […]

“Both boys were absolutely silent, satiated with a great story.”

Yesterday Elissa posted Elizabeth Partridge’s reminiscence about reading Avi’s 1991 Boston Globe–Horn Book Fiction winner, The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, to her boys. As this post’s title suggests, her anecdote shuts down anyone who might question whether or not boys can enjoy books starring girls (including Elizabeth’s own sons: “‘What?’ My ten-year-old shot straight […]

The Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards celebrate 50 years

Have you seen the new Boston Globe–Horn Book Award website yet? Take a look; it is a thing of beauty. 2017 marks the fiftieth year the Awards have honored children’s and young adult books in three categories: Picture Book, Fiction and Poetry, and Nonfiction. The microsite offers a wealth of information about the BGHB awards, […]

She Blinded Me with Science!

My family and I attended the March for Science Boston on Earth Day, Saturday, April 22. My boys started out grumbling about having to participate in another march (Geez! We’ve only been to three since January 21st—it’s not like we have to demonstrate every day…yet), so I was grateful that this march had a very […]

On Hazel Rochman’s “Beyond Oral History: What Makes a Good Holocaust Book?” (from 2006)

Dear White House Press Secretary: I don’t hold out much hope that you think this way, but if I were you on this day after your epic what-I-hope-was-a-gaffe regarding Hilter, Assad, and chemical weapons, I’d be frantically trying to educate myself about what we mean when we refer to the Holocaust. Here’s a great way […]

On Shoshana Flax’s “A Wrinkle in Troubled Times” (from 2016)

“Some of our very best fighters have come from your own planet.” —Mrs. Whatsit to Meg Murray About Madeleine L’Engle’s Newbery Award–winning novel, the writer Anne Lamott said the following in a 2012 interview with The New York Times Book Review: “A Wrinkle in Time saved me because it so captured the grief and sense […]

On “The CCBC’s Diversity Statistics” (from 2017)

The Cooperative Children’s Book Center at the University of Wisconsin–Madison has been tracking the number of children’s books created by people of color since 1985. In an interview that will be published in the July/August 2017 issue of The Horn Book Magazine, book review editor Martha V. Parravano talks with CCBC director Kathleen T. Horning […]

On “These children need a champion” (from 2015)

“Dr. Jiménez deserves to have the school named after him, but even more than that, our students need it. I’ve been an aide in this school district for twenty-six years, and I’ve seen how much these children need a champion. They need someone to relate to, someone from the same background who has succeeded, to […]