Raising readers is the goal of every reading parent and is at the heart of the Horn Book’s mission.

Rumpeta-ing through Reading: Picture Books for the Very Young

My daughter Emily has always been a reading omnivore: we have photos of her poring over books from the time she could first sit up. Everything was of interest: catalogs featuring photographs of children; books verging on toys, with flaps or holes or even wheels; concept books; story books. Gradually, certain authors and books became […]

#WeGotDiverseAwardBooks: Reflections on Awards and Allies

lambert and family

I missed out on ALA Midwinter this year. At nine months pregnant, there was just no way I could hop on a plane (or hop anywhere, really) to be a part of the conference and its festivities. But shortly after the 2015 ALA Youth Media Awards were announced, a colleague emailed me, “How about all […]

Megan Dowd Lambert Hubbub booklist

Books in the Home, from My Home to Yours Megan Dowd Lambert megan.lambert@simmons.edu Boston Book Fest Hubbub, The Four Seasons, Boston, MA 4/14/2015 Selected Books about Books and Reading Bottner, Barbara Miss Brooks Loves Books (and I Don’t), illustrated by Michael Emberley Gerstein, Mordicai A Book Gravett, Emily Again! Klausmeier, Jesse Open This Little Book, […]

In Defense of Gentle Men

frazee_farmer and the clown

Although I found much to celebrate in the aftermath of the 2015 ALA Youth Media Awards announcements, I admit that I sat licking my wounds over one favorite picture book that didn’t make the Caldecott cut: Marla Frazee’s The Farmer and the Clown. I’d given a copy to my eight-year-old daughter Caroline, and my liking […]

Read like the Obamas

woodson_brown girl dreaming

Over the weekend, the Obamas did some shopping at the DC indie bookstore Politics and Prose to support Small Business Saturday. Here’s what they bought. And here’s what The Horn Book thought of their selections when they were originally published. Reviews are from The Horn Book Guide Online and The Horn Book Magazine. Cronin, Doreen […]

Words for Flora’s Mother (and Other Imperfect Parents)


Often, when I mention that I have five children, people ask, “How do you do it all?” I sometimes quote a response I’ve heard from Donna Jo Napoli, fellow writer, professor, and mother of five: “How do I do it all? Badly. You could eat off my kitchen floor…for weeks.” How I do it all […]

Books in the Home: The Penderwicks on Hayward Street


Middle grade fiction saved Jeanne Birdsall’s life. Here’s how Birdsall’s Penderwicks books helped save two of her fans. The first time we listened to The Penderwicks on Gardam Street, we were fleeing Hurricane Irene. Traffic was backed up on the road out of Maryland’s Eastern Shore, and I was running out of ways to entertain […]

Five Questions for Kitty Flynn

Chloe and Jakob

At our upcoming Fostering Lifelong Learners: Prescribing Books for Early Childhood Education conference, Horn Book Guide Executive Editor Kitty Flynn will be leading a presentation about how the Horn Book evaluates and reviews preschool books. This is one aspect of her work that also engages her off the clock: Kitty and her husband are parents […]

Books in the Home: Reading Up

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Like many writers, I had a reading childhood, but I’ve only recently understood how countercultural my mother was about my reading. My brother and sister and I are close in age, so when I was a child there were no big-kid books and little-kid books; no girl books and boy books. All the books belonged […]

The Secret Garden’s Perennial Wisdom…for Parents

The Secret Garden

Every September of my English teaching career, I’d type up the semester’s reading list and prepare myself for the inevitable question: I’ve already read this! Why do I have to read it again? I’d tell my 
students that rereading a novel at a new period in their lives could bring fresh insight. But I never […]