Haunted home


With the theme “Homecoming,” Simmons College’s Center for the Study of Children’s Literature held its biennial Institute this weekend; the Horn Book staff provides an excellent summary. (And Shoshana Flax has written a poem in its honor, too.) The funniest moment was when Jack Benny Gantos quipped about Go Set a Watchman, whose publication, he said […]

Paul Bunyan and Boston

emberley_story of paul bunyan

An example of the spare beauty of mid-century design, Barbara and Ed Emberley’s The Story of Paul Bunyan (originally published in 1963 by Prentice Hall; new edition AMMO Books, January 2015) is illustrated with woodcuts and printed in two colors — woodsy brown accented with a bright blue befitting Paul’s beloved ox, Babe. The story […]



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 […]

What was the address of Greenaway House?

Alice-Heidi dollhouse

Please join Children’s Books Boston for our second Wicked Boston Children’s Books Trivia Challenge, to be held at M.J. O’Connor’s Back Bay (yes, a BAR) on Monday June 15th at 6:30PM. Jack Gantos will be your host; admission is one sawbuck, cash money, at the door. Sign up here.

I’ll show you WINTER.


Seasonally enough, last night I attended Blizzard of Voices, an oratorio by Paul Moravec (husband to your friend and mine Wendy Lamb). While you might have thought the warm and woody Jordan Hall would have been an oasis in Boston’s horrible weather, Moravec’s commemoration of the 1888 Schoolhouse Blizzard was terrible–in the exactest sense–in its evocation of […]

Fools, rush in.


This Saturday (moved to February 28th, same time same place) I will be speaking on a panel organized by Irene Smalls for people interested in writing books for children. At the Dudley Branch Library, 65 Warren Street in Roxbury, the panel, free and open to all comers, will run from 3:00 to 4:45, optionally followed by […]

Boston KidLit Book Exchange


In the Boston area and looking to either offload children’s/YA books or pick some up for your library? You’re in luck: Boston KidLit Drink Night founders Sam Musher, Jennie Simopoulos, and Kimberly Huynh have just launched the Boston KidLit Exchange to help match up donors with recipient libraries. According to the Exchange’s site, “We’re here […]

It’s not on any chart / You must find it with your heart


Please join me on Saturday the 25th at the Boston Book Festival for “Masters of Fantasy,” a panel discussion with Soman Chainani (A World Without Princes), Holly Black and Cassandra Clare (The Iron Trial), and Gregory Maguire (Egg & Spoon). We’ll be talking about–well, I guess I should get on that right quick, as I’m […]

Something’s coming

Arboretum lilac

Time for a meltdown?


If you’re free and in Boston Wednesday night, I’ll be participating in a panel discussion of the Common Core State Standards for Bookbuilders of Boston. Other panelists include Simmons GSLIS prof Amy Pattee and educational publishing consultant Steve Pekich; the program runs from 6:00-8:00PM at 501 Boylston Street in Copley Square. Bring ID to get […]