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Review of Jake at Gymnastics

isadora_jake at gymnastics

Jake at Gymnastics by Rachel Isadora; illus. by the author Preschool    Paulsen/Penguin    32 pp. 6/14    978-0-399-16048-6    $14.99    g As she did with Bea at Ballet (rev. 7/12), Isadora shows a group of roly-poly toddlers enjoying a beginning class, this time in gymnastics, with an Asian American boy as the focus. Teachers Dave and Toshi lead […]

Review of The Freedom Summer Murders and Freedom Summer

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The Freedom Summer Murders by Don Mitchell Middle School, High School     Scholastic     250 pp. 4/14     978-0-545-47725-3     $18.99 e-book ed. 978-0-545-63393-2     $18.99 Freedom Summer: The 1964 Struggle for Civil Rights in Mississippi by Susan Goldman Rubin Middle School, High School     Holiday     120 pp. 3/14     978-0-8234-2920-2     $18.95 With the fiftieth anniversary of Freedom Summer this […]

Five questions for Don Mitchell

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Don Mitchell got his start as a legislative assistant for national security in the office of Senator John Glenn, about whom he then wrote a biography for young people, Liftoff: A Photobiography of John Glenn, which was followed by Driven: A Photobiography of Henry Ford (both National Geographic, 9–12 years). His new book The Freedom […]

Review of Sugar Hill: Harlem’s Historic Neighborhood

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Sugar Hill: Harlem’s Historic Neighborhood by Carole Boston Weatherford; 
illus. by R. Gregory Christie Primary    Whitman    32 pp. 2/14    978-0-8075-7650-2    $16.99 “Sugar Hill, Sugar Hill where life is sweet” repeats throughout this rhymed tribute to Harlem’s storied neighborhood, the home of many well-to-do African Americans in the first half of the twentieth century. Although we […]

Review of Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker

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Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker by Patricia Hruby Powell; 
illus. by Christian Robinson Intermediate, Middle School    Chronicle    104 pp. 2/14    978-1-4521-0314-3    $17.99 To describe Josephine Baker’s life as “dazzling” is not an exaggeration. In this incomparable biography both Powell and Robinson convey the passion, exuberance, dignity, and eccentricity of their subject through words […]

Harriet Off the Beaten Path

Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

WHENEVER I GO TO THE MET I SEE THE SAME TWO KIDS THERE, SLINKING AROUND THE MUSEUM. DO THEY LIVE THERE? ALSO I’M PRETTY SURE I SAW THEM STEALING MONEY FROM THE FOUNTAIN. KEEP AN EYE ON THEM. THAT ELOISE, SHE IS SUCH A PILL. WHO WOULD WANT TO LIVE IN A HOTEL? ESPECIALLY A […]

Spying on Louise Fitzhugh

Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

I can clearly remember the first time I encountered Harriet the Spy. It was still a relatively new book in my school library when I pulled it off the shelf at age nine. Back then I read pretty much everything in the school library. A Wrinkle in Time. Meet the Austins. Depend on Katie John. […]

Review of Caminar

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Caminar by Skila Brown Middle School    Candlewick    200 pp. 3/14    978-0-7636-6516-6    $15.99 “Forest sounds / all around / but on the ground / the sound / of Me / grew. Echoed. / I heard a path I could not see.” Exquisitely crafted poems are the basis of an unusually fine verse novel set in 1981, in […]

Byron Barton on My Bus

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In the March/April 2014 Horn Book Magazine, reviewer K. T. Horning asked author/illustrator Byron Barton about My Bus, his latest transportation celebration. Read the starred review here. K. T. Horning: Joe from My Bus and Sam from My Car (Greenwillow, 2001) seem to lead parallel lives. And yet Joe’s passengers are animals and Sam’s are […]

Review of My Bus

My Bus

My Bus by Byron Barton; illus. by the author Preschool    Greenwillow    40 pp. 4/14    978-0-06-228736-6    $16.99    g In a companion volume to My Car (rev. 11/01), we ride along with Joe as he drives Bus #123 across a bold-hued landscape populated with feline and canine passengers. “At my first stop, one dog gets on my […]