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Reviews of the Week

Each week we publish three brand-new reviews of books people are — or should be — talking about. Look for recommended picture books on Mondays, fiction on Tuesdays, and nonfiction and poetry on Wednesdays.

Review of This Impossible Light

This Impossible Light by Lily Myers Middle School, High School    Philomel    343 pp. 6/17    978-0-399-17372-1    $17.99 Fifteen-year-old Ivy Lewis is a straight-A student who takes comfort in the familiar predictability of her sophomore year. Her father has moved out, her mother is slipping further into depression, her brother has left for college, and her best […]

Review of Maya Lin: Artist-Architect of Light and Lines: Designer of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Maya Lin: Artist-Architect of Light and Lines: Designer of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial by Jeanne Walker Harvey; illus. by Dow Phumiruk Primary    Ottaviano/Holt    32 pp. 5/17    978-1-250-11249-1    $17.99 In its early pages, this quiet and contemplative picture-book biography sets up artist-architect Maya Lin’s fascination with spaces, natural and human-made, and their dynamic relationship with phenomena […]

Review of Charlie & Mouse

Charlie & Mouse by Laurel Snyder; illus. by Emily Hughes Primary    Chronicle    48 pp. 4/17    978-1-4521-3153-5    $14.99 This beginning chapter book is filled to the brim with sincere, slice-of-life sibling moments. In four chapters, brothers Charlie and Mouse spend a day together in their home and neighborhood. Adults are present, but the focus is on […]

Review of The Fox Wish

The Fox Wish by Kimiko Aman; illus. by Komako Sakai Preschool    Chronicle    32 pp. 3/17    978-1-4521-5188-5    $16.99 A young girl and her little brother return to a park to retrieve her forgotten jump rope. When they discover a cheerful group of foxes trying to use the jump rope but failing (their tails keep tripping them […]

Review of Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets

Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets by Kwame Alexander with Chris Colderley and Marjory Wentworth; illus. by Ekua Holmes Intermediate, Middle School, High School    Candlewick    50 pp. 3/17    978-0-7636-8094-7    $16.99 The title of this innovative poetry collection comes from Lucille Clifton, who wrote, “Poems come out of wonder, not out of […]

Review of Karl, Get Out of the Garden!: Carolus Linnaeus and the Naming of Everything

Karl, Get Out of the Garden!: Carolus Linnaeus and the Naming of Everything by Anita Sanchez; illus. by Catherine Stock Primary, Intermediate    Charlesbridge    48 pp. 3/17    978-1-58089-606-1    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-60734-832-0    $9.99 Carolus Linnaeus (née Karl Linné) pioneered a classification system for living things that is, for the most part, still in use today. In […]

Review of Felix Yz

Felix Yz by Lisa Bunker Intermediate, Middle School    Viking    283 pp. 6/17    978-0-425-28850-4    $16.99 Thirteen-year-olds may sometimes seem like alien creatures, but how often do you meet one with an actual alien inside? Meet Felix Yz (pronounced like “is”). When Felix was three, his scientist father was vaporized in a lab accident and Felix himself […]

Review of Little Pig Saves the Ship

Little Pig Saves the Ship by David Hyde Costello; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Charlesbridge    32 pp. 5/17    978-1-58089-715-0    $14.99 e-book ed.  978-1-60734 929-7    $9.99 Little Pig from Little Pig Joins the Band (rev. 9/11) is back, once again left behind by his older siblings. This time they are going to sailing camp without […]

Review of Cricket in the Thicket: Poems About Bugs

Cricket in the Thicket: Poems About Bugs by Carol Murray; illus. by Melissa Sweet Primary    Ottaviano/Holt    40 pp. 5/17    978-0-8050-9818-1    $17.99 Twenty-nine common insects and arachnids (from ants to spiny-back spiders) are on display in Murray’s lively poems and Sweet’s inviting mixed-media illustrations. The titular cricket opens the proceedings in a poem mimicking an elusive […]

Review of This Is How We Do It: One Day in the Lives of Seven Kids from Around the World

This Is How We Do It: One Day in the Lives of Seven Kids from Around the World by Matt Lamothe; illus. by the author Primary    Chronicle    48 pp. 5/17    978-1-4521-5018-5    $17.99 “This is me,” announces the opening spread, while seven children, ages seven to eleven, smile out at the viewer and introduce themselves with […]