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Starred reviews, January/February Horn Book Magazine

From Dasha Tolstikova's A Year Without Mom

The following books will receive starred reviews in the January/February 2016 issue of The Horn Book Magazine:   I Hear a Pickle; (and Smell, See, Touch, and Taste It, Too!); written and illustrated by Rachel Isadora (Paulsen/Penguin) Emma and Julia Love Ballet; written and illustrated by Barbara McClintock (Scholastic) Unbecoming; by Jenny Downham (Fickling/Scholastic) Ling & Ting: Together […]

Kevin Henkes Talks with Roger

kevin henkes

Talks with Roger is a sponsored supplement to our free monthly e-newsletter, Notes from the Horn Book. To receive Notes, sign up here. You ask some very great writers and illustrators about how they do what they do, and it can seem as much a mystery to them as it is to you. But Kevin […]

Fanfare! 2015

Horn Book Fanfare

The Horn Book Magazine’s choices for the best books of 2015. Sign up now to receive the fully annotated list in next week’s issue of Notes from the Horn Book. Picture Books It’s Only Stanley written and illustrated by Jon Agee (Dial) My Bike written and illustrated by Byron Barton (Greenwillow) Out of the Woods: […]

From the Editor – December 2015

What Makes a Good...?

As a result of the baby boomlet of the late 1980s, we saw subsequent picture book publishing grow, not just in sheer numbers of new titles but in the expansion of the traditionally preschool genre’s reach into books intended for older children and even adults. In this edition of What Makes a Good…? we go […]

Review of The Inker’s Shadow

say_inker's shadow

The Inker’s Shadow by Allen Say; illus. by the author Intermediate, Middle School, High School   
Scholastic   80 pp. 10/15   
978-0-545-43776-9   $19.99   g This “patchwork of memories” (“and memories are unreliable, so I am calling this a work of fiction made of real people and places I knew”) sequel to Drawing from Memory (rev. 9/11) takes […]

TBT

mahy-memory

I’m at home today reading and re-reading books the Magazine loved this year, in preparation for our final Fanfare meeting next week where we will determine that these, yes these, are the very best books of 2015. And without giving anything away I want to comment (again!) on just how different the young adult literature of today […]

Jennifer Donnelly Talks with Roger

jennifer donnelly

Talks with Roger is a sponsored supplement to our free monthly e-newsletter, Notes from the Horn Book. To receive Notes, sign up here. Fans of Jennifer Donnelly’s first novel, A Northern Light, will enjoy her return to the Gilded Age in These Shallow Graves, a rich tale of murder and romance set in 1890 Manhattan. […]

Fairytale of New York

Brooklyn

If I ruled the world, Brooklyn would be the teen movie of the season. It has the vicissitudes of young romance, a love triangle, a heroine who blossoms from being pleasant-looking to full-on Titanic-era Kate Winslet, right down to the hair blowing and glowing in the ocean sunrise. It’s probably too quiet for wide appeal, though, […]

Review of The Book Itch: Freedom, Truth & Harlem’s Greatest Bookstore

nelson_book itch

The Book Itch: Freedom, Truth & Harlem’s 
Greatest Bookstore by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson; illus. by R. Gregory Christie Primary, Intermediate   Carolrhoda   32 pp. 11/15   978-0-7613-3943-4   $17.99 e-book ed. 978-1-4677-4618-2   $17.99 If the central character of Nelson’s Boston Globe–Horn Book Award-winning No Crystal Stair (rev. 3/12) was the author’s great-uncle, Lewis Michaux, this picture book adaptation […]

and clunk clunk clunk went the folktale market

aardema_bringing the rain to kapiti plain

Betsy Bird at Fuse #8 is rightfully mourning the relative dearth of African folktale publishing and simultaneously celebrating one of its legends from the glory days, Verna Aardema. All I can say is God bless Verna Aardema, who knew just how to write a picture-book text that would bring any library story hour to life. […]