Water in the Park

water in the park

Water, water everywhere. We learn early on (on the copyright page) that this is an homage to Tresselt and Duvoisin’s White Snow, Bright Snow and to Zolotow and Rey’s The Park Book. The fact that most of you have heard of the first while the latter has faded into the past points out something important: that […]

On your mark, get set, read!


Dear Patient Readers, Martha and I have come up with a plan for the next few months of your our lives. It involves a lot of words like gutter, back matter, typeface, design, saturated, and stylized. Some of those words we actually understand. We have mapped out our time, knowing that Lolly will jump in as soon […]

How to read a picture book, the Caldecott edition


1. Look at the cover. Feel the cover. Imagine the sticker. 2. Take the paper jacket off and check out the inside cover. I am sure there is a word for this part of the book, but I only have my non-librarian training to fall back on. Note whether the inside cover is is different […]

Time to get our lists in order


Since January, Lolly, Martha, and I have been collecting picture books that might be talked about come Caldecott time. Our first challenge is to make a list that pleases us. Just us. Some of the two dozen titles are there because they will be fun to argue about; some because one of us was wowed […]

We are back…almost


It’s hot, it’s humid and it’s time for Calling Caldecott again! We will start in earnest in a day or two, when we come back with our list of books we think will be talked about in the conference rooms of ALA Philadelphia in January 2014, but for now, I wanted to get everyone up […]

Caldecott 2013

z is for moose

As a book reviewer, one of the authors of the Horn Book’s Calling Caldecott blog, and a second-grade teacher, picture books are a huge part of my life. There are times when I feel overwhelmed by them. My dining room table groans with the weight of Books I Love, each vying for a coveted spot […]

Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer on The Beatles Were Fab (and They Were Funny)

beatles photo

In the May/June 2013 Horn Book Magazine, reviewer Robin Smith asked Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer, authors of The Beatles Were Fab (and They Were Funny), about the Beatles’ music in their own lives. Read Robin’s review here. Robin L. Smith: What was the first Beatles song you memorized? Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer: The […]

Review of The Beatles Were Fab 
(and They Were Funny)


The Beatles Were Fab 
(and They Were Funny) by Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer; illus. by Stacy Innerst Primary     Harcourt     40 pp. 3/13     978-0-547-50991-4      $16.99 Since the early sixties, the Beatles have defined the musical landscape of the world, influencing generations of listeners and musicians. Beatlemania, from its beginning in Liverpool to the band’s final […]

Review of Poison

Poison by Bridget Zinn

Poison by Bridget Zinn Middle School    Hyperion    280 pp. 3/13    978-1-4231-3993-5    $16.99    g Sixteen-year-old Kyra is a girl with more than her share of secrets. Living in the world of witches, dwarves, potion masters, shape shifters, and the like, she is reluctant to trust anyone, even her best friend and the future queen, Ariana. Readers […]

The sounds of books being printed

A Splash of Red

It’s about time for us to roll up our tent, shovel our snow, and retreat for a few months of reading and planning. Calling Caldecott might be back here and there if necessary, but mostly we will be waiting on our porches and offices and bookstores for books to talk about starting in September. For […]