Transformers: The Power of Storytelling

lester_john henry

I grew up in a small brick row house on a dead-end street in the Germantown section of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In many ways, my neighborhood block in the 1940s was representative of African American culture as a whole: there were too many things we were told we could not do, too many places we might […]

Why schools still need libraries (and librarians)

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I felt like a scavenger. There I was, in a prestigious private school’s library, picking through books they were getting rid of in order to make space for a new tech area. The staff was extremely kind, but I still resented what their students had and mine didn’t. As I’ve explained in previous posts, the […]

Reading for Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr

addasi_time to pray

The Islamic month of Ramadan, a solemn holiday of fasting from sunrise to sunset, charity, and additional prayer, begins today. Ramadan ends with the joyous feasting of the Eid al-Fitr celebration. These books for young readers — all recommended by The Horn Book Magazine and Guide — can be a part of a child’s holiday […]

CBB Trivia Night (or, It’s not dorky. It’s cool. Shut up.)

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The Horn Book is steeped in tradition. Since 1924, we’ve reviewed and discussed the finest in children’s literature. And since 2014, we’ve brought home the win at Children’s Books Boston’s Wicked Boston Children’s Book Trivia Challenge. This was the second year that Boston’s librarians, booksellers, editors, students, and other children’s lit nerds piled into M. […]

A sense of place

Maine picture books

“Doesn’t this book make you think of Rockport, of being down at the beach and feeling the waves?” one of my students asks me, holding up our classroom’s copy of Andre by Fran Hodgkins. “It does remind me of that,” I tell my student. “Why don’t you read what is says on the seal’s collar […]

BGHB-HBAS-Hubbub-Trivia: It’s all happening!

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Perusing Sunday’s Boston Globe (yes, on paper) I came across this ad congratulating the 2015 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award winners. Nice! Remember that you can join us on October 2-3 for the Boston Globe-Horn Book awards ceremony and the day-long Horn Book at Simmons colloquium on the theme of Transformations. Register here. Another exciting Monday-morning […]

Transformers: Ready or Not…

Lee_beauty and the beast

Translating Madame Villeneuve’s and Madame Leprince de Beaumont’s eighteenth-century French into contemporary American 
English for our picture book Beauty and the Beast was indeed a transformative event. In addition to the dramatic change in language, there were other differences, surprises brought on by time and the filter of many others before me. The process taught […]

TK

facepainting

Upcoming: We’ve just put the July/August Horn Book Magazine to bed (with very firm orders to stay there until June 29th). At 176 pages, it is quite the fattest ALA Awards issue we’ve published but it’s what’s on those pages that has me so excited. Because so much of the content is embargoed until after […]

Teaching and reading in a YA movie world

The Giver movie poster

The first time I read The Giver, I was astounded. I got to the last page, sat for a moment in wonder, and then flipped back to page 1 to begin again, in the hopes I could hold that moment for just a little longer. The images that the book conjured for me were permanent, even today, many years and reads later.

From the Guide: Board Book Transformations

baker_no two alike

In his article “Hijacking the Pumpkin Coach” (beginning on page 14), Gregory Maguire starts with a contemplation on the meaning of the word transformations, as well as some useful near-synonyms, among them “shape-changers” and “old wine in new skins.” In keeping with this theme, here are some recent Horn Book Guide–recommended examples of popular or […]