OUR Liza with a Z

TenSled

PW‘s Elizabeth Bluemle (who, by the way, has a wonderful article coming up in the March/April Horn Book Magazine) visits our own Liza Woodruff, who unaccountably  left work as a circulation assistant at the Horn Book to live in Vermont with her lovely husband and children and dogs while she pursues a full-time career as […]

We’ve always known how to pick ‘em

hobbit

Lolly and trusty interns Kiona and Marisa have uploaded the complete Horn Book Fanfare, our choices from 1938 to the present for the best in books for youth published each year. I hadn’t known that on the very first list was The Hobbit, a book the Horn Book was very excited about. It was reviewed […]

Making Picture Books: The Words

zolotow_my grandson lew

The beginning of a picture book comes before the pictures. In Margaret Wise Brown’s beautiful Goodnight Moon, it was the magic of her words, their simplicity and the music in them, that made Clement Hurd’s now-famous visual interpretation possible. Unless the writer is also an illustrator, the writing always comes first. Many fine writers can […]

Making Picture Books: The Pictures

cooney_miss rumphius

I don’t know exactly how I came to be an illustrator of books. Certainly much art throughout the ages has been in the form of illustration, although not necessarily in books. Since I was very little, I intended to be an artist of some sort. As I grew older, I wanted also a liberal-arts education […]

Over and Over

zolotow_overandover_222x300

“Once there was a little girl who didn’t understand about time.” So, with deceptive simplicity — for who, of any age, does understand time? — did my mother, Charlotte Zolotow, begin her book Over and Over, first published in 1957. As I write these words today, Charlotte is ninety-seven and I am fifty-nine. I see […]

Rembering Margaret Mahy: March 21, 1936-July 23, 2012

Margaret Mahy

There was never anyone quite like her. Other amazing children’s writers have won the Hans Christian Andersen Award, but none had her extra‑ordinary range: verse; picture-book texts; books for every conceivable age group; scripts for radio, television, film; serials for newspapers and magazines. “I have been such a tradesman all my professional writing life,” she […]

Calling all wolves

illustration by Pat Marriott, from The Wolves of Willoughby Chase

  Joan Aiken’s daughter Lizza is hosting an evening in New York to celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Wolves of Willoughby Chase. You should go. The anniversary has also prompted a new audio edition of the novel (Listening Library) about which Martha says: “I’ve just started listening to it, narrated by Joan Aiken’s daughter […]

Whitney and Me: Confessions of a Work-for-Hire Diva

Whitney Houston

I would call it a guilty pleasure if I felt guilty. But my subscription to People magazine actually liberates me. Instead of furtively flipping pages in the checkout line, hoping to find the photos of Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s baby before it’s time to unload the hummus, I have Blue Ivy Carter (seven pounds) delivered, so […]

Lunch with Lee Kingman

Lee Kingman Natti

It had been nearly five years since my last lunch with Lee Kingman Natti, but it felt like just last month. Her home in Gloucester is an oasis reflecting Lee’s lifelong involvement with artists and writers, as well as her own art. We sat looking out at the granite quarry that holds their water supply […]

Ghost in the Machine

art by Diane Landry; photo by Richard Asch

  Here I am wandering amidst the wonder that is Diane Landry’s Knight of Infinite Resignation (which made me a lot happier than it did the artist if the title is anything to go by), on display at Mass MoCA as part of their “Oh, Canada” exhibition. I don’t think I’ve ever been in a […]