Books mentioned in the March 2015 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book

Trailblazing women Demi  Florence Nightingale Gr. K–3     40 pp.    Holt    2014 Trade ISBN 978-0-8050-9729-0 Extraordinary Women series Doak, Robin  Michelle Obama Gr. 4–6    48 pp.    Raintree    2014 Library binding ISBN 978-1-4109-5940-9 Paperback ISBN 978-1-4109-5948-5 Hunter, Nick  Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge Gr. 4–6    48 pp.    Raintree    2014 Library binding ISBN 978-1-4109-5942-3 Paperback ISBN 978-1-4109-5950-8 Kulling, Monica  […]

Sporting life

amstutz_bicycle basics let it roll

Amstutz, Lisa J.  Bicycle Basics: Let It Roll! Gr. K–3     24 pp.   Capstone Amstutz, Lisa J.  Bike Safety: A Crash Course Gr. K–3     24 pp.    Capstone Pebble Plus: Spokes series. These primers are good introductions to the sport as well as to bicycling safety, history, and mechanical basics. Clearly focused on promoting the recreational fun […]

Folklore from around the world

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Andrews, Jan  When Apples Grew Noses and White Horses Flew: Tales of Ti-Jean Gr. 4–6     69 pp.     Groundwood Illustrated by Dušan Petričić. Ti-Jean, cheerful, hapless stripling of French-Canadian folklore, makes a winning appearance in three tales of European origin lightly transposed to a New World setting. Andrews is a storyteller, and these zesty, well-paced […]

National Poetry Month

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Florian, Douglas Poem Depot: Aisles of Smiles Gr. K–3     154 pp.     Dial Readers browse through “Poem Depot’s” eleven “aisles” (chapters) with names like “Chortles & Chuckles” and “Tons of Puns.” Many of the pieces are four to ten lines long, easily memorized by the audience, who will enjoy the funny punch lines. Florian uses thick, […]

Earth Day 2015

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Chancellor, Deborah  The Changing Environment Gr. K–3     48 pp.    Kingfisher/Macmillan Kingfisher Readers series. In two-page chapters, the book introduces foundational environmental concepts, including animal species, ecosystems, climate, and fossil fuels, then seamlessly unites these concepts in discussions of environmental threats and possible resolutions. Complex connections (e.g., the relationship between global warming, habitat loss, and endangered […]

Trailblazing women

demi_florence nightingale

Demi  Florence Nightingale Gr. K–3     40 pp.    Holt A straightforward text of declarative sentences describes Florence Nightingale’s childhood, training, service in Crimean War hospitals, and lifelong crusade to reform nursing and health care. The true draw of this clear picture book biography, however, is Demi’s simple line-drawn illustrations with collage elements: close reader attention will […]

Review of I, Fly

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I, Fly: The Buzz About Flies and How Awesome They Are by Bridget Heos; illus. by Jennifer Plecas Primary   Holt   40 pp. 3/15   978-0-8050-9469-5   $17.99   g An adorable fly — googly-eyed, fuzzy-bodied, and with a winning smile, as portrayed in Plecas’s funny but informative cartoon illustrations — makes a compelling argument for why he should […]

Review of Fatal Fever

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Fatal Fever: Tracking Down Typhoid Mary by Gail Jarrow Intermediate, Middle School  Calkins Creek/Boyds Mills  176 pp. 3/15      978-1-62091-597-4     $16.95 In the second book by Jarrow about a deadly disease — Red Madness was the first — she takes on typhoid. At the turn of the twentieth century, typhoid was still very much […]

Review of One Plastic Bag

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One Plastic Bag: Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia by Miranda Paul; illus. by Elizabeth Zunon Primary   Millbrook   32 pp. 2/15   Library ed. 978-1-4677-1608-6   $19.99 e-book ed. 978-1-4677-6299-1   $19.99 In the 1980s in the cities of the Gambia, a switch from using baskets made of natural materials to non-biodegradable plastic bags led […]

Review of Tomboy

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Tomboy: A Graphic Memoir by Liz Prince; illus. by the author Middle School, High School   Zest Books   256 pp. 9/14   Paper ed. 978-1-936976-55-3   $15.99 e-book ed. 978-1-936976-56-0   $15.99 “When you don’t look or act like what everyone has been told is the norm, you get proverbially barfed on a lot.” In an often funny, sometimes […]