Reviews of the 2015 Caldecott Award winners

santat_adventures of beekle

Winner: The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat; illus. by the author Primary    Little, Brown    40 pp. 4/14     978-0-316-19998-8     $17.00 Imaginary friend Beekle waits and waits for a child to think him into existence. When it doesn’t happen, Beekle sails off to the real world — a city full of boring adults — […]

Reviews of the 2015 Sibert Award winners

bryant_right word

Winner: The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus by Jen Bryant; illus. by Melissa Sweet Primary     Eerdmans    48 pp. 9/14     978-0-8028-5385-1     $17.50 Apt language and ingenious imagery combine to tell the life story of Peter Mark Roget, creator of the thesaurus. A solitary, though not unhappy, child, Roget spends his time keeping […]

Reviews of the 2015 Batchelder Award winners

dumon tak_mikis and the donkey

Winner: Mikis and the Donkey by Bibi Dumon Tak; illus. by Philip Hopman; trans. from the Dutch by Laura Watkinson Primary, Intermediate   Eerdmans   93 pp. 10/14   978-0-8028-5430-8   $13.00 Setting the stage on the island of Corfu, Hopman’s atmospheric opening illustrations pan in from aerial view to village to Mikis’s grandpa under a sycamore tree with […]

Reviews of the 2015 Belpré Author Award winners

agosin_i lived on butterfly hill

Winner: I Lived on Butterfly Hill by Marjorie Agosín; illus. by Lee White; trans. by E. M. O’Connor Intermediate     Atheneum     455 pp. 3/14    978-1-4169-5344-9    $16.99 Eleven-year-old Chilean girl Celeste faces upheaval when a brutal dictator rises to power, her parents go into hiding, and she is shipped off to Maine. Threads of mysticism lend an […]

Reviews of the 2015 Belpré Illustrator Award winners

Viva Frida

Winner: Viva Frida by Yuyi Morales; illus. by the author with photos by Tim O’Meara Primary, Intermediate  Porter/Roaring Brook  40 pp. 9/14   978-1-59643-603-9   $17.99   g There have been several books for young readers about Frida Kahlo, but none has come close to the emotional aesthetic Morales brings to her subject, as a Mexican artist herself […]

Reviews of the 2015 Printz winners

nelson_i'll give you the sun

Winner: I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson High School   Dial   375 pp. 9/14   978-0-8037-3496-8   $17.99   g In her much-anticipated second book, Nelson (The Sky Is Everywhere, rev. 3/10) delivers another novel of romance, tragedy, grief, and healing, told in poetic prose with the barest hint of magical realism. Jude and Noah are fraternal […]

Reviews of the CSK Illustrator Award winners 2015

copeland_firebird

Illustrator Award Winner: Christopher Myers for Firebird Firebird: Ballerina Misty Copeland 
Shows a Young Girl How to 
Dance like the Firebird by Misty Copeland; 
illus. by Christopher Myers Primary Putnam 40 pp. 9/14 978-0-399-16615-0 $17.99 g Think you can simply write off celebrity books? Think again. American Ballet Theatre soloist Copeland is just as graceful […]

Preview March/April 2015 Horn Book Magazine

Cover art from Tomie dePaola

Beneath these packing peanuts lies the March/April 2015 Horn Book Magazine cover by Tomie dePaola. In the March/April 2015 Horn Book Magazine: Barbara Bader pays tribute to five gay picture-book creators. Vaunda Micheaux Nelson, 2014 Horn Book at Simmons keynote speaker, calls for more good books featuring diverse characters. Sight Reading: Leonard Marcus on the […]

Reviews of selected books by Patrick Jennings

jennings_odd weird and little

Putnam and Pennyroyal by Patrick Jennings; illus. by Jon J Muth Intermediate     Scholastic     165 pp. 11/99     0-439-07965-9     $15.95 From the beginning of his narrative, it’s evident that Cora Lee’s Uncle Frank is possessed by a contrary streak. Cora always spends New Year’s with Frank, fishing in one of Arizona’s rare ponds, because he won’t visit […]

Peg + Cat: The Tree Problem app review

peg + cat menu

The little-girl and feline, respectively, stars of the animated series Peg + Cat, have a series of loosely math-related, cat-stuck-in-a-tree adventures in The Tree Problem app (PBS Kids, January 2015). First choose a location: Math-tropolis, Dino Valley, The South Pole, Broadway, The Farm, or Peg’s Backyard. (If you’re indecisive, that just gives you time to hear […]