Editorial: Parents: A Vital Link

By Ethel L. Heins By now it is probably beating a dead horse to talk about the continuing downward trend of the verbal Scholastic Aptitude Test scores and to set forth the variety of factors on which to lay the blame. And it is also laboring the obvious to stress the fact that the reading […]

Letter from England: Dorothy Butler

By Aidan Chambers Every year our children’s book editors give the Eleanor Farjeon Award to someone they consider has performed outstanding services to children’s books. This year the recipient is Dorothy Butler. Two of her books will shortly reach you and will richly demonstrate why our editors felt they wanted to recognize this remarkable woman. […]

Dorothy Butler, 1925-2015

dorothy butler

We were very sad to hear about the death this week of Dorothy Butler — author, bookstore doyenne, kiwi, and great Friend of The Horn Book. Read — and be inspired by — her classic Horn Book Magazine article “A Children’s Bookshop in New Zealand: One Family’s Enterprise“: “The fact that the story of my […]

What ELSE do you do?: five questions for Deborah Taylor

Deborah Taylor is third from the left in this 2014 photo of the "Cincy Gang." Photo by Alison Dougherty Berkowitz

This series of interviews debuted last spring with five questions for author T.A. Barron; now I’m following it up with five more for one of my favorite librarians, Deborah Taylor, coordinator of school and student services for the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore. Deb and I have been friends for more than thirty years since […]

Marcia Brown, 1918-2015


We were saddened to hear about the death of author-illustrator Marcia Brown this week at the age of ninety-six. The winner of three Caldecott Medals — for Cinderella in 1955, Once a Mouse in 1962, and Shadow in 1983 — she was also recognized with a whopping six Caldecott Honors (including her indelible Stone Soup […]

Jack and Hazel


WHY I have to go to Chicago to see Jack Gantos when he lives only a mile away from my office is a question I’ll happily ignore to hear his Zena Sutherland Lecture at the Chicago Public Library tomorrow night. Join us if you can; otherwise you can read Jack’s speech in the Horn Book this […]

News from the North


Please forgive my long absence here; between Christmas and some family stuff I’ve been mostly out of the office for almost a month. And how things DO pile up: I am heartened by the advice of the late Booklist editor Edna Vanek, passed down to me by Betsy Hearne: “one book at a time.” That […]

Remembering Trina Schart Hyman


November 19, 2014 marks the ten-year anniversary of the death of illustrator Trina Schart Hyman. Author/illustrator Jim Arnosky shares his memories of the Great Lady — what she meant to him as a mentor and as a friend. We are approaching ten years since the world of children’s literature lost Trina Schart Hyman. I still […]

Girls in Towers


Madeleine L’Engle’s novel Camilla (titled Camilla Dickinson when first published in 1951 and recently reissued) features a bright and passionate fifteen-year-old who presents us with the essential question of the YA genre — how will this girl survive the emotional chaos of adolescence? In fairy tales, this same question is more logistical — how will […]

Marla Frazee, wipe that smile off your face!


The story below is one reason we love Marla Frazee. Find out many more by reading her Talks with Roger interview. I was once a clown, in high school. A bunch of us were nominated to be on the homecoming court — twenty-five or thirty people — and I did not want to be one […]