July Notes

july 2014 notes

In this month’s Notes from the Horn Book, we chat with author Varian Johnson about his tightly plotted novel The Great Greene Heist — and his favorite heist movies! You’ll also find • more middle-school capers • pet picture books • primary nature nonfiction • dragons and witches in YA fantasy Read the issue online […]

My gun, my foot

KateD

Instant karma whacked me upside the head at the end of last month when the July-August issue of the Horn Book Magazine, wherein I take ALSC to task for demanding too much secrecy around its Newbery and Caldecott deliberations, was mailed a full week early, thus spoiling the entirely justifiable secret of just what Kate […]

Cathleen Daly on Emily’s Blue Period

daly_emily's blue period

In the July/August 2014 Horn Book Magazine, reviewer Martha Parravano asked Emily’s Blue Period author Cathleen Daly about the dual focus of this innovative picture book. Read the starred review of Emily’s Blue Period here. Martha V. Parravano: Your book beautifully incorporates details about a particular artist (Picasso) and the young girl who’s inspired by him […]

One to watch: Sarah Ann Loreth

vaught_insanity

My dance troupe just had a photoshoot with the super-talented Sarah Ann Loreth, a photographer and digital artist I consider a rising star. I mean, check out this gorgeousness: Imagine my excitement when I came across Susan Vaught’s book Insanity (Bloomsbury, February 2014), with Sarah’s disquieting photography on the cover, on our shelves. Sarah’s photos […]

Using picture books to teach satire

The Stinky Cheese Man

It is important to expose children to a variety of genres of literature at young age and to do our best to explain the conventions of that genre in developmentally appropriate ways. One of the genres of literature that might not get as much emphasis in standardized tests but is important to be able to […]

World War I Interactive app review

wwi interactive entry of us

World War I Interactive (2012) is part of Touchzing Media‘s interactive history app series (other entries cover the American Revolution, the Civil War, WWII, the Vietnam War, general American history, and the lives of Abraham Lincoln and Mahatma Gandhi). Since my own WWI knowledge comes largely from Downton Abbey and Legends of the Fall, I […]

Two Arthurs

Arthur now

Here in Boston we are getting ready for a sideswipe by Hurricane Arthur. They’ve even moved the Boston Pops and fireworks festivities to tonight instead of tomorrow. Meanwhile, Arthur is headed for the southeast coast here in the US today. It’s pretty rare for that first storm of the season — the one named with […]

Walter Dean Myers (1937-2014)

Photo by Constance Myers

We are terribly sad to learn of the death of Walter Dean Myers on Tuesday from pneumonia. As an author, his accolades are nearly too numerous to count: National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, Margaret A. Edwards Award winner, (first) Printz Award winner, Coretta Scott King Author Award winner, Newbery honoree, Boston Globe-Horn Book honoree, […]

Conference report: Association of Jewish Libraries

AllofaKind

As a new member of a prestigious book award committee, I recently winged off to Vegas to meet my fellow committee members, attend conference sessions, and generally be invigorated by the field of children’s books and the librarians who love them. Leave ALA to Roger and Martha — I was at the Association of Jewish […]

Books that feature poets

The Vigilante Poets of Selwyn Academy

Recently some friends of mine from Brookline High — Mary Burchenal and Ric Calleja — were interviewed in the Boston Globe about whether poetry is starting to disappear from schools. I don’t really know, but I sure hope not. In lots of classrooms I visit, poetry is certainly a part of the curriculum. But I […]