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The Horn Book's blogs include Read Roger, Out of the Box, Calling Caldecott, and Lolly's Classroom. You can follow them all here, or individually via each blog's own URL and/or RSS feed.

On the Radar

It’s the third Thursday of the month; time to tantalize you all with some covers of picture books sure to be on 2018 Caldecott committee members’ radars. (Whether or not these books make it onto members’ suggestion lists or into their “yes” piles—or, eventually, are chosen for that most selective of all categories, their nominations list—is […]

The Family Who Reads Together, Cries Together

When I first began reading Patricia MacLachan’s Sarah, Plain, and Tall books aloud to my daughter years ago, I knew I was in trouble. During the first book, my voice cracked with emotion simply because of how beautiful the story is. Small arms indulgently encircled me to comfort me in my moment of vulnerability. By […]

Shut up, Rihanna

I guess the phrase “last night on TV” has been rendered obsolete, but last night on TV we watched the fourth episode of the second season of The Path, a Hulu series starring Hugh Dancy, Michelle Monaghan, and Aaron Paul about people in a cult–true believers, skeptics, and apostates (sometimes all in the same character, as […]

PotterCon Boston

It will probably come as no surprise to frequent OOTB readers that Shoshana, Cindy, and I were some of the first attendees to arrive at PotterCon Boston on Saturday afternoon. Less a con and more a low-key party, this event was the “the first annual Boston day-drinking and mingling destination for [grown-up] Harry Potter fans.” […]

Presenting… “The Straight Poop on Potty Humor” (from 2017)

If you spend any amount of time with kids under, say ten (dear god, I hope it stops after ten…), you are undoubtedly waist deep in potty humor. Here’s one of my kids’ favorites: Knock knock! Who’s there? Europe! Europe who? Hey! You’re a poo! Actually, it was funny the first time we heard it. […]

Thanks, moms!

Happy Mother’s Day to those celebrating, especially our own mothers and our mom friends! Here are a few recommended books, articles, and blog posts featuring moms and Mother’s Day; find plenty more about mothers (and dads, and grandparents, and other kinds of loving caregivers) over at Family Reading. This week’s mom-themed Reviews of the Week: […]

Unrequired Reading

Just back from the semi-annual meeting of Boston’s Literacy Summit, where we got a first glimpse of what the Boston Public Library and the Boston Public Schools have planned for summer reading. There’s no need to dwell on my misbehavior during the opening ice-breaker; I’ll just say that I’m the kind of person who needs […]

Home Boov Pop! Puzzle Adventure app review

Home is the 3D animated film adaptation (DreamWorks Animation, March 2015; PG) of Adam Rex’s The True Meaning of Smekday. Shoshana and I went to see it in theaters and I loved it. I loved it very much. Home Boov Pop! Puzzle Adventure (DreamWorks Animation SKG/Behaviour Interactive, 2015; iOS and Android) is a movie tie-in […]

The Good, the Bad, and the Self-Published: Could an Indie Picture Book Win the Caldecott?

Right about now, the 2018 Caldecott chair is likely receiving a steady trickle of self-published books in the mail. Yes, these books are completely eligible for the award! As long as their illustrators are American, that is. But is this an exercise in futility? Could a self-published picture book actually win? To my knowledge, one never […]

2017 Summer Reading Recommendations

“Summer readin’ / had me a blast…” By now you should know that The Horn Book’s philosophy regarding summer reading is just do it, but the it is wide open to interpretation. Summer reading should not be a way to trick kids into doing school. Sure, reading can be learning (and oftentimes it is, even […]