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Authors & Illustrators

Biographical information about writers and illustrators of books for young people.

Five questions for Andrea Davis Pinkney

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A Poem for Peter: The Story of Ezra Jack Keats and the Creation of the Snowy Day (Viking, 7–9 years) by Andrea Davis Pinkney is a loving tribute to an iconic picture-book character, Peter — one of the first African American children in picture books — and his creator, Ezra Jack Keats, author and illustrator […]

Judith Ortiz Cofer and Marilyn Sachs

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We were sad to hear about the deaths, just before the New Year, of Judith Ortiz Cofer (1952-2016) and Marilyn Sachs (1927-2016), two of children’s literature’s Great Ladies. Cofer’s 1995 linked short story collection An Island Like You: Stories of the Barrio was a touchstone work in children’s books: “A milestone in multicultural publishing for […]

Lisa Yee Talks with Roger

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Talks with Roger is a sponsored supplement to our free monthly e-newsletter, Notes from the Horn Book. To receive Notes, sign up here. Sponsored by Known mainly for her expert (and comic) takes on realistic middle-grade life, Lisa Yee moves into superhero territory with the DC Super Hero Girls series, part of a franchise designed […]

Happy Birthday, FableVision!

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As a pre-Thanksgiving treat, I attended FableVision Studios‘ 20th-Anniversary Bash at their beautiful office above the Boston Children’s Museum. FableVision is the media company cofounded by Peter H. Reynolds, children’s author/illustrator of The Dot and many, many other books, as well as being owner of the Blue Bunny Bookstore in Massachusetts [read the Horn Book […]

Five questions for Robin Smith of Calling Caldecott

Robin Smith

Since its debut in 2011, The Horn Book’s Calling Caldecott blog has been a destination for picture-book lovers eager to discuss favorite books in the months leading up to ALA annual — and to make their best guesses about what will win Caldecott gold. The Calling Caldecott team is Martha Parravano, executive editor of The Horn […]

Massachusetts Book Awards 2016

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On Tuesday, December 6th, I was lucky to be the plus-one, with amazing school librarian Liz Phipps Soeiro, at the sixteenth annual Massachusetts Book Awards ceremony at the State House, in recognition of “significant works of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and children’s/young adult literature published by Commonwealth residents or about Massachusetts subjects.” The award is administered […]

Voice of Freedom: Illustrator Ekua Holmes’s 2016 BGHB NF Honor Speech

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I am extremely honored to be here. Not in my wildest dreams did I imagine work that I’ve done being honored in this way. It’s my maiden voyage. I’m so fortunate that I worked with an amazing publisher, Candlewick; I worked with an amazing and prolific author, Carole Boston Weatherford; and I worked on an […]

Voice of Freedom: Author Carole Boston Weatherford’s 2016 BGHB NF Honor Speech

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I could not have written these poems without the ancestors. I call on them again and again, and their spirits continue to speak to and through me. This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine. Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine. That African American spiritual was Fannie Lou Hamer’s favorite […]

Symphony for the City of the Dead: Author M. T. Anderson’s 2016 BGHB NF Honor Speech

anderson_symphony for the city of the dead

This book is a hymn, I hope, to a composer I love and to the power of music in general. It began when my interest was piqued by the idea of a symphony considered so important that it was transferred onto microfilm like some dossier in a spy novel and smuggled halfway across the globe. […]

The Lie Tree: Author Frances Hardinge’s 2016 BGHB Fiction Award Speech

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Writing is a thoroughly weird job. Writers perform in a void for an invisible audience. We show the tender insides of our brains to people we will probably never meet. Sometimes I’m asked whether I write for an “ideal reader” or a particular “market.” To be honest, I don’t really know how you write for […]