Picture Books, Art and Illustration

always room for one more

From Newbery and Caldecott Medal Books, 1966-1975 edited by Lee Kingman, published by The Horn Book, 1975 Ten years, ten books. Ten books that, one by one, have been put forth as the best of the year’s picture books, by inference the best that America could produce. This is the burden of the Newbery and […]

Horn Book reviews of Caldecott Medal winners, 1960-1969

nine days to christmas

1960 MARIE HALL ETS and AURORA LABASTIDA Nine Days to Christmas (Viking) Illustrated by Marie Hall Ets The creator of Play with Me and her co-author, who has worked with children at the Benjamin Franklin Library in Mexico City, have together produced a charming Christmas picture book. The significance of the Mexican posada and piñata […]

Reviews of select Bernard Waber titles

house on east 88th street

Bernard Waber, Author-Illustrator  The House on East 88th Street 48 pp.  Houghton  $3.00 Library edition  $2.90 Tried out with a picture-book group, this tale of a domesticated crocodile named Lyle proved consistently captivating. In his story, Lyle wins the hearts of new residents of a New York City house where an actor has left him […]

May Massee: As Her Author-Illustrators See Her

may massee

by Ludwig Bemelmans About seven years ago a typographer brought Miss Massee to my house for dinner. It was a dreary building of six rooms in a noisy neighborhood. The windows of my living room looked out at a cobweb of telegraph wires, a water tank, and a Claude Neon sign that flashed “Two Pants […]

Ludwig Bemelmans

Ludwig Bemelmans

by May Massee Every writer leaves bits and pieces of his own story in his books whether he knows it or not, so I thought I’d look through some of Ludwig Bemelmans’ books to see what he says about himself here and there. The trouble is, I find a paragraph that shows what a good […]

Caldecott Award Acceptance by Ludwig Bemelmans

madeline's rescue

by Ludwig Bemelmans Paper read at the meeting of the American Library Association, Minneapolis, Minnesota, June 22, 1954. My deep gratitude to the members of the American Library Association for the Caldecott Medal. Now we shall talk about art. There is one life that is more difficult than that of the policeman’s and that is […]

Horn Book reviews of Caldecott Medal winners, 1950-1959

song of the swallows

1950 LEO POLITI, Author-Illustrator     Song of the Swallows (Scribner) The swallows always appeared at the old Mission of Capistrano on St. Joseph’s Day and Juan who lived nearby wondered how they could tell that from all others. This tender poetic story of the coming of springtime is touched by the kindliness of the good Fathers of […]

On Spies and Purple Socks and Such

Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

If you were a queer kid like me growing up in the sixties, I hope you were fortunate enough to come across books by Louise Fitzhugh. She may have saved your life, or at least made it a bit more comfortable. When I was eleven, I didn’t know I was gay; I only knew that […]

The Horn Book’s inaugural editorial

Horn Book Magazine, October 1924

We chose this title — THE HORNBOOK — because of its early and honorable place in the history of children’s literature, but in our use of it we are giving it a lighter meaning, as Mr. Caldecott’s three jovial huntsmen on the cover suggest. Just as they are so full of exuberant joy for the […]

Realms of Gold and Granite

Horn Book Magazine 75th Anniversary cover

The Bookshop for Boys and Girls was born, in a twelvemonth, with a pedigree and a distinguished list of patrons. Its role was largely determined from the outset. But life, real life, is also a string of accidents. Bertha Mahony was thirty-three and restless after ten years as a good right-hand at Boston’s Women’s Educational […]