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Review of Two Brothers, Four Hands: The Artists Alberto and Diego Giacometti

Two Brothers, Four Hands: The Artists Alberto and Diego Giacometti by Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan; illus. by Hadley Hooper Primary, Intermediate    Porter/Holiday    64 pp.    g 4/19    978-0-8234-4170-9    $21.99 e-book ed.  978-0-8234-4224-9    $16.99 Experts at accessibly describing art and exploring the often-complex lives of its creators, Greenberg and Jordan (most recently Meet Cindy Sherman, rev. […]

Review of The Mighty Heart of Sunny St. James

The Mighty Heart of Sunny St. James by Ashley Herring Blake Intermediate, Middle School    Little, Brown    373 pp.    g 3/19    978-0-316-51553-5    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-0-316-51550-4    $9.99 After receiving a heart transplant, twelve-year-old Sunny decides it’s time for a “New Life” with specific components — including finding a boy to kiss and finding a new best […]

Journeys through grief

Though each of the protagonists of these middle-grade and middle-school stories navigates grief in her or his own way, their paths to healing are all poignant and relatable. In Kwame Alexander‘s Rebound, the 1988-set prequel to Newbery Medal winner The Crossover, twelve-year-old Charlie Bell is spending the summer with his grandparents following the sudden death […]

Happy National Poetry Month 2019!

April is National Poetry Month. These illustrated collections for primary and intermediate readers show the variety of forms poetry can take (hello, riddle-ku!) and topics it can cover — from melting snowmen to creativity-unlocking pencils and more. For more on poetry from The Horn Book, see the tags National Poetry Month and poetry. Snowman – […]

Review of The Last Last-Day-of-Summer

The Last Last-Day-of-Summer by Lamar Giles; illus. by Dapo Adeola Intermediate, Middle School    Versify/Houghton    289 pp.    g 4/19    978-1-328-46083-7    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-0-358-04721-6    $9.99 African American cousins Otto and Sheed Alston are local legends in their small Virginia town, often featured in the Logan County Gazette for their daring exploits — getting rid of ghosts, […]

Review of The Undefeated

The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander; illus. by Kadir Nelson Primary, Intermediate, Middle School    Versify/Houghton    40 pp.    g 4/19    978-1-328-78096-6    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-358-05761-1    $12.99 Alexander and Nelson honor the achievements, courage, and perseverance of ordinary black people as well as prominent black artists, athletes, and activists. The free-verse poem begins: “This is for the unforgettable. / […]

Review of Titanosaur: Discovering the World’s Largest Dinosaur

Titanosaur: Discovering the World’s Largest Dinosaur by José Luis Carballido and Diego Pol; illus. by Florencia Gigena Primary, Intermediate    Orchard/Scholastic    40 pp.    g 3/19    978-1-338-20739-2    $18.99 The paleontologists who discovered the fossilized bones of a group of seven of the largest-known (“for now”) dinosaurs take readers step-by-step through the careful and time-consuming process of unearthing, […]

Review of A Ray of Light: A Book of Science and Wonder

A Ray of Light: A Book of Science and Wonder by Walter Wick; photos by the author Intermediate    Scholastic    40 pp.    g 2/19    978-0-439-16587-7    $17.99 Wick explores the concepts of light and color in a sophisticated yet comprehensible format. As in his masterful A Drop of Water (rev. 3/97; winner of the 1997 Boston Globe–Horn […]

Review of No More Poems!: A Book in Verse That Just Gets Worse

No More Poems!: A Book in Verse That Just Gets Worse by Rhett Miller; illus. by Dan Santat Primary, Intermediate    Tingley/Little, Brown    48 pp. 3/19    978-0-316-41652-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-316-41649-8    $9.99 Miller, lead singer/songwriter of the alt-country band Old 97’s, knows how to grab an audience’s attention. This collection of twenty-three kid-pleasing poems opens with […]

Brave girls in audiobooks

These audiobooks starring brave and resilient female protagonists will appeal to middle-grade fans of historical fiction featuring strong and lively young women. March is Women’s History Month. See also our Five Questions interview with Laurie Halse Anderson and the “Strong women making an impact 2019” section in this issue of Notes from the Horn Book; […]