Opinion

Gimlet-eyed and occasionally -addled views on what's wrong and right in the world of books for young people.

2015 Mind the Gap Awards: The books that didn’t win at ALA

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Mad, man! The Madman of Piney Woods by Christopher Paul Curtis No Printz for the princes The Children of the King by Sonya Hartnett #WWBYD (What Would Baba Yaga Do?) Egg & Spoon by Gregory Maguire Slow and steady didn’t win the race The Turtle of Oman by Naomi Shihab Nye, illustrated by Betsy Peterschmidt […]

Editorial: What the Survey Doesn’t Say

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Welcome to our annual issue devoted to the ALA book awards. You will find herein acceptance speeches by and profiles of the Coretta Scott King, Caldecott, Newbery, and Wilder award winners as well as some analysis of the winners and honor books; some Newbery history (where does K. T. Horning find those stories?); and “Mind […]

From the Editor – June 2015

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Who got it right, the Newbery and Caldecott or the Boston Globe–Horn Book Awards? This isn’t exactly a fair fight as the different awards have different criteria and eligibility standards, but it’s fun to compare. You can read all about the recently announced BGHB Awards here, and our coverage of the ALA awards (acceptance speeches […]

From the Editor – May 2015

It’s that time of year again: the Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards will be announced on May 27th. I’ll be sharing the honor of naming the winners with Rebecca Stead, who won the 2010 Fiction Award for When You Reach Me, at 5:00 pm in New York City at SLJ’s Day of Dialog. If you’re there, […]

Marcia Brown letter to Bertha Mahony Miller (undated)

Letter and drawing from Martha Brown

To Bertha E. Miller, for some time “Early one morning in the spring”, with very much appreciation. Marcia Brown Dear Mrs. Miller I want to tell you how much I enjoyed meeting you and how much it meant to me to hear your speech recalling Elizabeth Miller, Mukeiji, and the others, whom I had known […]

“Dear Mr. Zelinsky”

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This is a lesson in overcoming assumptions. The mail I receive from readers trends strongly to the appreciative; it’s rare that anything remotely critical comes in, so I’m sure I’m completely spoiled. When I read this letter from a class near Philadelphia and saw that they were questioning a scene in the background of one […]

Editorial: Plus ça change

May/June 2015 Horn Book Magazine

Late last summer, the Horn Book staff gathered at Roger’s house for our annual editorial and organizational planning meeting. It was one of those Goldilocks sorts of days: too hot in the sun, too cold in the shade. This winter’s Snowpocalypse wasn’t even a gleam in anyone’s eye. Our office had recently moved from Charlestown […]

From the Editor – April 2015

The Academy of American Poets chose wisely back in 1996 when they designated April as National Poetry Month. A book of poetry is the perfect choice for outdoor reading in spring. You can open to one page and put your hands back in your pockets to warm while you read. You can pay attention to […]

“There Is Work to Be Done” -Walter Dean Myers

Photo by Constance Myers

It was difficult to accept Walter Dean Myers’s death last summer. Just months earlier, and almost exactly a year to this date, he brought the conversation, decades unresolved, to the general public, with his searing New York Times op-ed “Where Are the People of Color in Children’s Books?” He gave us the CCBC statistics: only […]

From the Editor – March 2015

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The #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign is doing a great job of helping us (by which I mean children’s book professionals of all sorts) keep to the fore of our attention the need not just for books that articulate a multitude of experiences, but diverse creators to create them and diverse readers to read them. Two articles in […]