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Leave Me Alone!

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Leave Me Alone! has everything necessary for a great picture book: a frustrated main character, epic adventure, and derpy goats. A book with derpy yarn-eating goats may be being considered for the Caldecott Medal, and I’m pretty thrilled about it. This is cartoonist Vera Brosgol’s first picture book, and though I’ve heard great things about […]

Upcoming posts

coming soon

Class is over, the January magazine has printed, and it’s pretty slow here at the Horn Book office. But what should be a lovely empty schedule ideal for blog posting is being being filled with lots of important tasks that have been on the back burner and need to be done in 2016. This is […]

Ho, ho, LEGO

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It’s my favorite time of year: time for the LEGOs to come out at my house. Well, let’s be honest, some of them are out all year. But I did just add the new holiday train set to my collection to run under my Christmas tree and, boy, do I love it. It’s a long-standing […]

Auggie and Her, Jess’s Dad and Me

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Katherine Paterson’s Bridge to Terabithia was one of the first books to make me cry. I was in fourth grade when I read it, and Leslie’s death wrecked me. I wept at its suddenness, at the shock of a child’s death, and at the plain wrongness of it all while my heart ached for Leslie’s […]

Time to share your mock award results

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When the teachers in my children’s lit class completed their mock awards last week (three Caldecott committees plus a Sibert and a Geisel), I encouraged them to hold mock Caldecotts with their own students when they are back in the classroom. I also shared the best incentive I’ve found: Colby Sharp’s 24-second video of his […]

2016 Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards speeches

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Follow the links below to be inspired, moved, awed, and entertained by the complete 2016 Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards speeches (and while you’re at it, re-watch the 2016 BGHB announcement with Roger Sutton and Linda Pizzuti Henry — you won’t regret it!). Click on the tags BGHB16 and HBAS16 for timelines, pictures, and more. Photos, […]

L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables TV movie review

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Let’s start with what Breakthrough Entertainment’s L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables does right. This adaptation, which first aired in Canada back in February but was released stateside over Thanksgiving weekend, does hit a lot of favorite moments from the book, particularly its early chapters. Anne (Ella Ballentine) arrives in Avonlea the way she’s supposed […]

Planet Lettra app review

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Upon opening, Planet Lettra (Studio Goojaji, 2015; iOS only) offers the option of taking a young user–friendly tour. I recommend starting there — the app looks simple, but there are a number of quirks that would’ve taken me a while to figure out without the help. As the tour explains (in rhyme), Planet Lettra has […]

A list of great 2016 picture books

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Blogger (and Horn Book reviewer and Calling Caldecott poster) Minh Lê has just released his annual list of best picture books, sorted into his own unique categories. His lists are always terrific; this year especially! Check it out here.    

The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles

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This is not my kind of picture book. The story is too wispy for me, the language occasionally too twee, and the premise . . . well, I just don’t buy it. But one of the things committee members must do for an award like the Caldecott (or even a mock Caldecott!) is put aside their own personal likes […]