YA is the new black

prison library

As we fans know, the Netflix original Orange Is the New Black is set in Litchfield Penitentiary, a federal prison for women in upstate New York. This prison is clearly underfunded. It’s falling apart. Its limited resources are being siphoned off by despicable assistant warden Fig. The sewers are backing up into the drains in […]

Our secret garden

A view of downtown Boston from the rose garden.

(Thanks to Kitty for the name!) During lunch break, Martha, Kitty, and I were walking around our new Fenway ‘hood and we came across the James P. Kelleher Rose Garden. After being called “girls” by two charming tourist ladies of a certain age who were looking for restaurant suggestions, we went in to the garden […]

Freedom Summer reading

scattergood_glory be

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, the 1964 grassroots campaign to register black voters in Mississippi — the state with the lowest percentage of black voters registered and a history of disenfranchisement through intimidation and violence. These books about that significant and bloody summer are all recommended by The Horn Book Magazine […]

Headmaster?

bob white

Crossing the Simmons quad this morning, I spotted a familiar figure: long white hair and beard, flowing robes, and twinkling, bespectacled eyes… Professor Dumbledore? No, it was Professor Bob White, a beloved Communications department faculty member. Still, his big smile and cheery “Good morning!” added a little bit of magic to my morning.

Angela Johnson on All Different Now

johnson_all different now

On this day in 1865 — more than two years after the Emancipation Proclamation was issued — abolition was finally announced in Texas, the last stronghold of slavery. In the May/June 2014 Horn Book Magazine, reviewer Robin Smith asked author Angela Johnson about the closing words and image of All Different Now: Juneteenth, the First […]

We were the champions…eventually

CBB Cup

The Horn Bookers — a.k.a. Goldilocks and the Free Beers, a.k.a. Elissa, Shara, Katrina, Lolly, and Rachel — got off to a slow start at last night’s Children’s Book Boston trivia event held at M. J. O’Connor’s Irish Pub located in Back Bay. We were two team members down at the start of the evening […]

Harriet fans, feast your eyes

Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

Fans of Harriet the Spy must click here. Seriously. You will not be disappointed. Thanks to Friend-of-the-Horn-Book Rich Michelson for sharing this special image with us (used by permission of Laura Morehead, another big thank-you). According to Rich: “The story behind the picture is only that it was found among Louise Fitzhugh’s papers. No one […]

Thanks a lot, Trixie’s Dad

willems_knuffle bunny too

…and the great Mo Willems, on Fathers’ Day, for creating dad characters who take care of their kids in a non-bumbling, matter-of-fact (if realistically exhausted and strung-out) sort of way. But, hey, also? As Megan Dowd Lambert points out: Cut it out with the nighttime bunny exchanges. You’re making the rest of us look bad. […]

KidEWords app review

kid e words menu

KidEWords (Chocolapps, 2014), an educational crossword puzzle app for kids, helps children learn words, associate images with the correct words, and improve their spelling skills. On the app’s menu page you choose the Easy, Medium, or Hard version, based on your spelling ability. Then choose a level from one to twenty (the first three in […]

June’s Notes is here!

june 14 notes

In June’s edition of Notes from the Horn Book, we ask historian Don Mitchell about researching his new book The Freedom Summer Murders. You’ll also find • more nonfiction about Freedom Summer and Black History • new going-to-bed books • wacky intermediate sci-fi • graphic novels for middle schoolers You can read the issue online […]