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Choosing Books

Promoting good books for children and young adults is the heart of The Horn Book’s editorial mission.

Review of Let ’Er Buck!: George Fletcher, the People’s Champion

Let ’Er Buck!: George Fletcher, the People’s Champion by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson; illus. by Gordon C. James Primary, Intermediate    Carolrhoda    40 pp.    g 2/19    978-1-5124-9808-0    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5145-4180-1    $18.99 Nelson (Bad News for Outlaws, rev. 11/09) returns to the Old West for this engrossing picture-book biography of African American cowboy and bronc buster George […]

Review of Duck & Goose: A Gift for Goose

Duck & Goose: A Gift for Goose [Step into Reading] by Tad Hills; illus. by the author Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    32 pp. 1/19    978-0-525-64490-3    $4.99     Library ed.  978-0-525-64491-0    $12.99     e-book ed.  978-0-525-64492-7    $4.99  For certain kids, the box can be the best part of a gift — especially when it’s as enticing as the one […]

Review of Undocumented: A Worker’s Fight

Undocumented: A Worker’s Fight by Duncan Tonatiuh; illus. by the author Middle School, High School    Abrams ComicArts    24 pp.  8/18    978-1-4197-2854-9   $19.99  “You don’t know our names but you’ve seen us.” The accompanying illustration is of Juan, an undocumented immigrant, with one hand raised in a fist and the other holding a megaphone from which the […]

Review of The Mad Wolf’s Daughter audiobook

The Mad Wolf’s Daughter by Diane Magras; read by Joshua Manning Intermediate, Middle School    Listening Library    Rev. 7/18 6 CDs    6.62 hrs.    978-0-525-53134-0    $50.00 Drest is determined to free her captured older brothers and father from Faintree Castle, where they soon will be hanged, and she means to use the young knight she rescued to […]

Review of Just Right: Searching for the Goldilocks Planet

Just Right: Searching for the Goldilocks Planet by Curtis Manley; illus. by Jessica Lanan Primary    Roaring Brook    48 pp. 1/19    978-1-250-15533-7    $18.99  The ever-fascinating idea that there may be life on other planets drives this smart discussion of the major advances in astronomy that have led to the discovery of exoplanets (officially, “extrasolar planets”), along with […]

Star-crossed love

Space, time, war, death, capricious gods: teen protagonists defy cosmic forces to be together in these out-of-the-ordinary love stories. On a Sunbeam, Tillie Walden’s serial webcomic turned epic graphic novel, follows two alternating, far-future timelines. In the first, eighteen-year-old Mia seeks her place among the tight-knit crewmates of a spacecraft; five years earlier, at an […]

Picture book love and community

These new picture books model self-love, strength in community, and pride in identity for very young children of color. Hands Up! by Breanna J. McDaniel, illustrated by Shane W. Evans, is an affirmation of self-love for children of color. An exuberant brown-skinned girl recounts many situations in which she puts her “hands up”: playing peek-a-boo, […]

Celebrating Black History 2019

February is Black History Month. The following nonfiction titles present informative, inspirational, and moving stories about notable African American people and events, to be shared with readers all year long. See also our Five Questions interview with Claire Hartfield, winner of the 2019 Coretta Scott King Author Award for A Few Red Drops: The Chicago […]

Books mentioned in the February 2019 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Claire Hartfield A Few Red Drops: The Chicago Race Riot of 1919 by Claire Hartfield, Clarion, 12–16 years. Celebrating Black History 2019 The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander, illus. by Kadir Nelson, Houghton/Versify, 8–14 years. We Rise, We Resist, We Raise Our Voices, ed. by Wade Hudson and Cheryl Willis Hudson, illus. by […]

Review of New Kid

New Kid by Jerry Craft; illus. by the author Intermediate, Middle School    Harper/HarperCollins    249 pp.    g 2/19    978-0-06-269120-0    $21.99     Paper ed.  978-0-06-269119-4    $12.99     e-book ed.  978-0-06-269121-7    $10.99  Craft’s engaging graphic novel follows Jordan Banks (an African American seventh grader from Washington Heights) through his first year at the prestigious Riverdale Academy Day School (RAD). Jordan […]