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 […]

Youth Media Awards and teachers

tamaki_this one summer

I’ve been somewhat preoccupied this week since the ALA Youth Media Award announcements Monday morning. Here at the Horn Book, we swing into action putting up web posts with our reviews of the winning books. Over at my other blog, Calling Caldecott, the award announcement signals the beginning of the end of our blog season. […]

Caldecott-fandom crossovers, pt. 2

adipose

Well, I guess I’m flying my fangirl flag high on OOTB these days. After last week’s Sam & Dean post and Monday’s ALA Youth Media Awards announcements, I’m back with another “I can’t be the only one…” situation. Is it just me, or does unimaginary friend Beekle look a lot like the Adipose babies from […]

ALA Awards 2015: Horn Book reviews of the winners

alexander_crossover

     The most prestigious honors in children’s literature, the Newbery and Caldecott medals, were awarded to Kwame Alexander and Dan Santat on February 2, 2015, at the American Library Association’s midwinter meeting in Chicago. Also announced at the gathering were the winners of the Coretta Scott King, Pura Belpré, Michael L. Printz, Robert F. Sibert, […]

Reviews of the 2015 Caldecott Award winners

santat_adventures of beekle

Winner: The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat; illus. by the author Primary    Little, Brown    40 pp. 4/14     978-0-316-19998-8     $17.00 Imaginary friend Beekle waits and waits for a child to think him into existence. When it doesn’t happen, Beekle sails off to the real world — a city full of boring adults — […]

Caldecott Award live

logo_YMA

The ALA Youth Media Awards will be announced tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. CT in Chicago (that’s 9 a.m. for Martha and me in Boston). Here is a link to the live webcast. Watching online is not quite the same as being in that huge ballroom full of book-loving early risers, fizzing with anticipation and […]

Caldecott 2014: The Year in Pictures

locomotive

Welcome to Las Vegas! City of lights, city of sin; of excess, exploitation, and glitter. It may be an unlikely spot for a library conference, but its unofficial slogan makes it an apt one: what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. I’m referring here not to mayhem and debauchery (although…feel free) but to the famed […]

B: A Profile of Brian Floca

locomotive

An editor’s dream — smart authors, smart artists. They save so much time. That is, they’re up to speed without undue heaving or the need for sand on the tracks (see Locomotive for more on the subject). My subject in this tribute is someone who is all three: author, artist, smart. Given a pencil, Brian […]

ALA Awards 2014: Horn Book reviews of the winners

diCamillo_Flora

     The most prestigious honors in children’s literature, the Newbery and Caldecott medals, were awarded to Kate DiCamillo and Brian Floca on January 27, 2014, at the American Library Association’s midwinter meeting in Philadelphia. Also announced at the gathering were the winners of the Coretta Scott King, Pura Belpré, Michael L. Printz, Robert F. […]

Reviews of the 2014 Caldecott Award winners

locomotive

Winner: Locomotive by Brian Floca; illus. by the author (Jackson/Atheneum) Talk about a youth librarian’s dream come true: a big new book about those ever-popular trains from a bona fide picture-book-nonfiction all-star. Striking cinematic endpapers lay the groundwork, describing the creation of the Transcontinental Railroad in the 1860s. Then, in a sort of historical-fiction-meets-travelogue narrative, […]