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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 We Will Not Be Silent: The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler

freedman_we will not be silent

We Will Not Be Silent: The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler by Russell Freedman Intermediate, Middle School    Clarion    104 pp. 5/16    978-0-544-22379-0    $17.99 Freedman’s latest photohistory is an excellent overview of the White Rose resistance movement, a group of university students who, beginning in June 1942 in Munich, Germany, risked their […]

Review of Ask Me How I Got Here

heppermann_ask me how i got here

Ask Me How I Got Here by Christine Heppermann High School    Greenwillow    229 pp. 5/16    978-0-06-238795-0    $17.99    g e-book ed.  978-0-06-238797-4    $9.99 Catholic-school sophomore Addie loves running cross-country, writing poetry, and having sex with her thoughtful, artsy new boyfriend, Nick. Then Addie gets pregnant. Her decision to have an abortion is unwavering, and she has […]

Review of Flora and the Peacocks

idle_flora and the peacocks

Flora and the Peacocks by Molly Idle; illus. by the author Preschool    Chronicle    40 pp. 5/16    978-1-4521-3816-9    $17.99 Idle’s third wordless picture book starring Flora (Flora and the Flamingo, rev. 7/13; Flora and the Penguin, rev. 11/14) is, appropriately, about a three-way friendship and the tricky dynamics thereof. Flora curtsies hello to a pair of […]

Review of Flying Frogs and Walking Fish: Leaping Lemurs, Tumbling Toads, 
Jet-Propelled Jellyfish, and More 
Surprising Ways That Animals Move

jenkins_flying frogs and walking fish

Flying Frogs and Walking Fish: Leaping Lemurs, Tumbling Toads, 
Jet-Propelled Jellyfish, and More 
Surprising Ways That Animals Move by Steve Jenkins and Robin Page; illus. by Steve Jenkins Primary    Houghton    40 pp. 5/16    978-0-544-63090-1    $17.99 The authors’ latest collaboration (How Many Ways Can You Catch a Fly?, rev. 1/09; My First Day, rev. 1/13) features […]

Review of The Wild Robot

brown_wild robot

The Wild Robot by Peter Brown; illus. by the author Intermediate    Little, Brown    279 pp. 4/16    978-0-316-38199-4    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-0-316-38201-4    $9.99 When five shipping crates from a doomed ship crash ashore on a deserted island, only one of them — 
containing our robot protagonist — is lucky enough to survive undamaged. ROZZUM unit 7134 […]

Review of Excellent Ed

mcanulty_excellent ed

Excellent Ed by Stacy McAnulty; 
illus. by Julia Sarcone-Roach Primary    Knopf    32 pp. 5/16    978-0-553-51023-2    $16.99 Library ed.  978-0-553-51024-9    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-0-553-51025-6    $10.99 Ed, the beloved dog in the Ellis family, has a bit of an inferiority complex. Each of the five alliteratively named Ellis children has something that he or she is “excellent” […]

Review of Cloth Lullaby: The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois

novesky_cloth lullaby

Cloth Lullaby: The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois by Amy Novesky; 
illus. by Isabelle Arsenault Primary    Abrams    40 pp. 5/16    978-1-4197-1881-6    $18.95 Novesky returns to territory in which she shines — picture-book biographies of influential and strong-willed female artists (Georgia in Hawaii; Me, Frida) — with this exquisite portrait of modern artist Louise Bourgeois, who […]

Review of A Clatter of Jars

graff_clatter of jars

A Clatter of Jars by Lisa Graff Intermediate    Philomel    218 pp. 5/16    978-0-399-17499-5    $16.99    g Graff returns to the magical world introduced in A Tangle of Knots (rev. 7/13), where citizens are either Talented (possessing gifts that range from asparagus cooking to memory manipulation) or Fair, with no extraordinary abilities. Here, children with Singular Talents […]

Review of The Airport Book

brown_airport book

The Airport Book by Lisa Brown; illus. by the author Primary    Porter/Roaring Brook    40 pp. 5/16    978-1-62672-091-6    $17.99 As an (interracial) family of four scrambles to leave its city apartment for the airport, readers get used to the book’s approach: as narrated by the older brother, a straightforward but lively main text provides basic information […]

Review of I Am Pan!

gerstein_i am pan

I Am Pan! by Mordicai Gerstein; 
illus. by the author Primary, Intermediate    Roaring Brook    80 pp. 3/16    978-1-62672-035-0    $18.99 Never have the first-person point of view and the exclamation point been used more appropriately than in this introduction to the Greek god Pan. Untrammeled ego, low impulse control, resilient, charming — this is a Pan […]