Subscribe to The Horn Book

Real Cowboys

Most of us associate illustrator Jonathan Bean with a more representative style and a less saturated medium. (Think Building Our House and This Is My Home, This Is My School.) But of course the Real Committee can’t be thinking about that, and anyway Bean made the right artistic choice for this book’s impressionistic text. The art is composed of […]

This Is My Home, This Is My School

Using the same setting and characters from his semi-autobiographical Building Our House (a 2013 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award winner), Jonathan Bean portrays a typical day in the life of a homeschooling family in This Is My Home, This Is My School. Mr. Versatile, Bean changes his illustration style from book to book and does so […]

Bad Bye, Good Bye

You know that feeling that you’ve missed something? Well, I had that feeling last week when I pulled out the titles for my class’s mock Caldecott. I blithely grabbed Bad Bye, Good Bye and thought, “Uh-oh. I never wrote about this one, did I?” In true Robin Smith fashion (ask any of my editors what […]

Studio Views: A New Freedom

I began using ink and watercolor at a time when I was trying to break some of the rules I learned during a very good but rigid high-school art education. The studio I attended was based on a classical master/apprentice model. My teacher was blunt: he wasn’t teaching you to be an artist; he was […]

Building Our House

Jonathan Bean’s Building Our House came out way back in January, so everyone probably knows by now that the book is based on a true story: the author’s parents (the ultimate DIYers) built the Bean family homestead from scratch while living in a trailer and raising three small children (!). Here are things I appreciate […]

January 2013 reviews of the week

As promised, we’re going to pop up from time to time off-season to keep us all up to date with new books that will be eligible for the next Caldecott. Every week, this website posts a review from the latest issue of Horn Book Magazine. Whenever it’s a picture book review, we’ll put link here. […]