Choosing Books

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

LumiKids Snow app review

lumikids snow title screen

It’s rainy, not snowy, in Boston right now, so I thought I’d take the opportunity to explore the winter wonderland that is LumiKids Snow (Lumosity Labs, December 2015). Opening the app, you’re taken to a landscape of white and icy teals, where a friendly seal waits on a small ice floe. Tap to access a […]

Review of What Are You Glad About? 
What Are You Mad About?: Poems for When a Person 
Needs a Poem

viorst_what are you glad about

What Are You Glad About? 
What Are You Mad About?: Poems for When a Person 
Needs a Poem by Judith Viorst; illus. by Lee White Primary, Intermediate   Dlouhy/Atheneum   102 pp. 2/16   978-1-4814-2355-7   $17.99   g e-book ed. 978-1-4814-2355-1   $10.99 Viorst’s most famous book is Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, and this […]

Two historical fiction books | Class #3, 2016

One Crazy Summer

     One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia Supplemental readings: Rita Williams-Garcia’s profile in July/August 2007 Horn Book Magazine No Crystal Stair: A Documentary Novel of the Life and Work of Lewis Michaux, Harlem Bookseller by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson; illustrated by R. Gregory Christie Historical fiction is a balancing act of storytelling and character development with […]

Review of To Catch a Cheat

johnson_to catch a cheat

To Catch a Cheat by Varian Johnson Middle School   Levine/Scholastic   248 pp. 2/16   978-0-545-72239-1   $16.99   g e-book ed. 978-0-545-72241-4   $16.99 After his crew succeeded at foiling a corrupt student council election in The Great Greene Heist (rev. 7/14), Jackson Greene retired from his con-man antics. Until…someone floods the Maplewood Middle School bathrooms and hallways, and […]

Preview March/April 2016 Horn Book Magazine

March/April 2016 Horn Book Magazne

Beverly Cleary’s 100th birthday: To mark the occasion, publisher David Reuther; authors Elaine Scott, Varian Johnson, Kurtis Scaletta, Kate Messner, and Tony DiTerlizzi; and librarian Julie Roach reflect on Beverly Cleary’s work. Ibi Zoboi on building a “Fine Bookshelf” of mirror books. Plus, her interview with authors Edwidge Danticat and Rita Williams-Garcia. The Writer’s Page: […]

Review of Dylan the Villain

campbell_dylan the villain

Dylan the Villain by K. G. Campbell; illus. by the author Primary   Viking   40 pp. 2/16   978-0-451-47642-5   $17.99   g “‘Congratulations,’ said the doctor. ‘It’s a healthy little super-villain!’” Sweet, unsuspecting new parents Mr. and Mrs. Snivels are surprised by this development (and by the fact that they just “happened to have a baby”), but not […]

Pigment app review

pigment title screen

Coloring is cool these days. Really, coloring is cool any time. But what’s a budding artist to do on the go? If you want to color, but you don’t want to carry around all your coloring books, your colored pencils, your paint and brushes, there’s a solution: Pigment (Pixite LLC, 2015). You can start by […]

Review of The Borden Murders: Lizzie Borden & the 
Trial of the Century

miller_borden murders

The Borden Murders: Lizzie Borden & the 
Trial of the Century by Sarah Miller Middle School   Schwartz & Wade/Random   284 pp. 1/16   978-0-553-49808-0   $17.99 Library ed. 978-0-553-49809-7   $20.99   g e-book ed. 978-0-553-49810-3   $10.99 Lizzie Borden took an axe, / Gave her mother forty whacks. / When she saw what she had done, / She gave […]

Books mentioned in the January 2016 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book

Immigration Freedman, Russell  Angel Island: Gateway to Gold Mountain Chinese poems translated by Evans Chan. Gr. 4–6     81 pp.     Clarion     2014 Trade ISBN 978-0-547-90378-1 Harrison, Geoffrey C. and Scott, Thomas F.  New Americans Gr. 4–6     48 pp.   Norwood   2013 Library binding ISBN 978-1-59953-591-3 Nazario, Sonia  Enrique’s Journey: The True Story of a Boy Determined to […]

Psychology and mindfulness

psychology_barron_wisdom of merlin

Barron, T. A. The Wisdom of Merlin: 7 Magical Words for a Meaningful Life Gr. 4–6, middle school     74 pp.     Philomel This book of advice, adapted from the author’s 2013 Oxford University address, is presented as a conversational visit with the famous wizard Merlin. Summarizing life’s experiences and mysteries in a few simple words, […]