Book & Me | Comic #6

Book & Me by Charise Mericle Harper

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Review of Dear Hank Williams

holt_dear hank williams

Dear Hank Williams by Kimberly Willis Holt Intermediate   Holt   220 pp. 5/15   978-0-8050-8022-3   $16.99   g On the first day of school, September 1, 1948, eleven-year-old Tate P. Ellerbee learns that her class will be writing to pen pals, with her teacher explaining that “new worlds will unfold in front of you, and you’ll see your […]

Deliciously creepy fantasy

hoffman_nightbird

Magical alter egos, parallel worlds, and uncanny situations add a bit of atmospheric creepiness to these four intermediate and middle-school fantasy adventures. Twig Fowler and her mother keep to themselves so that their neighbors in Sidwell, Massachusetts, won’t discover their secret: Twig’s older brother James has wings, thanks to a generations-old curse laid upon all […]

Hooray for Grandma!

wells_use your words sophie2

Four new picture books celebrate the special place grandmothers have in their grandchildren’s lives. Being a new big sister’s much-needed ally, introducing a young child to the pleasures of gardening, getting serious about pretend play as a custodial grandparent, or nurturing a budding artist’s creative spark, grandmothers’ roles are vibrant and varied. Just like the […]

Teens meet history

wein_black dove white raven

Adolescence is always a time of transition. For the characters in these YA historical novels, that transition takes place while the world is changing as well. Black Dove, White Raven is set mostly in Ethiopia in the 1930s. Em (who is white) and Teo (who’s black) have grown up together, their mothers American stunt-pilots who […]

Books mentioned in the May 2015 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Christian Robinson Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña, illus. by Christian Robinson, Putnam, 5–8 years. Hooray for Grandma! Use Your Words, Sophie! by Rosemary Wells, Viking, 2–5 years. Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt by Kate Messner, illus. by Christopher Silas Neal, Chronicle, 5–8 years. […]

They’ve got the beat

engle_drum dream girl

Picture-book biographies can be an instrumental way to introduce children to musical figures. Whether they’re breaking new ground or slapping the skins — or both! — the following real-life performers will inspire kids to march to their own beat. The protagonist of Margarita Engle’s poetic picture book Drum Dream Girl: How One Girl’s Courage Changed […]

Book & Me | Comic #5

Book & Me by Charise Mericle Harper

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Review of My Bike

barton_my bike

 My Bike by Byron Barton; illus. by the author Preschool   Greenwillow   40 pp. 4/15   978-0-06-233699-6   $16.99 This latest installment in Barton’s transportation series (My Car, rev. 11/01; My Bus, rev. 3/14) may be the best one yet. Which is saying a lot. With bright primary colors, simple bold shapes, and the briefest of texts, Barton […]

Book & Me, Week 1

Book & Me by Charise Mericle Harper

In case you missed them, here are the first four entries in Charise Mericle Harper’s original “Book & Me” comics series: Introduction to the series by Charise Mericle Harper Introduction by Mag editor Elissa Gershowitz #1: “I’m a book!” “I made him!” #2: “I don’t think the cat likes me…” #3: “Do you remember the […]