Boys’ life

herrndorf_why we took the car

A heartrending and hilarious junior-high road-trip novel; a story about stepping up in dire straits; an exploration of grief, false exteriors, and hope; and a riveting depiction of a boy feigning manhood. These new novels featuring teenage boys offer coming-of-age drama with real heart. Two teens abandon their lackluster lives and hit the Autobahn in […]

Flora and friends

viorst_lulu's mysterious mission

Kate DiCamillo’s Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures (illustrated by K. G. Campbell; Candlewick, 6–9 years) — that warmly told and illustrated story of a comics-loving girl, a superheroic squirrel, and their friendship — took home the 2014 Newbery Medal. The following primary and early intermediate novels also star smart, spirited girls on adventures big […]

Lives lived large

cline-ransome_benny goodman

Picture book biographies provide young children with glimpses into the lives of notable men and women. The following books highlight people whose accomplishments in the arts, on the seven seas, and on the world stage are inspirations to us all. Arun Gandhi, grandson of the Mahatma, tells of visiting Sevagram, India, as a child in […]

February’s Notes on the way!

feb 14 notes

Subscribers to our monthly newsletter Notes from the Horn Book should be receiving the February issue in their inboxes annnnnny minute. This time around we’ve got five questions for esteemed poet Marilyn Nelson, and much more: • Black History Month reading for middle-graders • picture books about independence for preschoolers • facts and figures about […]

From the Editor – February 2014

As we celebrate Black History Month, it’s wise to remember Dick Gregory’s quip: “Wouldn’t you know that when they got around to giving us a month, it would be the month of February, with all them days missing?” While a Month, or a Week, or a Day can serve to focus attention on something too […]

Books mentioned in the February 2014 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Marilyn Nelson Carver: A Life in Poems by Marilyn Nelson, Front, 13–16 years. A Wreath for Emmett Till written by Marilyn Nelson, illus. by Philippe Lardy, Houghton, 13–16 years. Freedom Business: Including a Narrative of the Life & Adventures of Venture, a Native of Africa written by Marilyn Nelson, illus. by Deborah […]

YA love stories for Valentine’s Day

anderson_impossible knife of memory

Looking to get swept away or to think about love’s deeper meaning? Lighthearted or serious, set in the U.S. or Iran, these four books will leave older YAs breathless for love. For more recommendations, see “What Makes a Good YA Love Story?” from the May/June 2013 Horn Book Magazine. When high school senior Hayley Kincain […]

Fascinating animal facts

roth_parrots over puerto rico

Learning about animals from an early age helps children understand their own relationship with the larger world. The following four books present fascinating facts and figures about extinct, endangered, and/or just extremely interesting animals. Susan L. Roth and Cindy Trumbore’s 2014 Sibert Award–winning Parrots over Puerto Rico is a gorgeously illustrated history of the critically […]

Books for Black History Month

lewis_march book 1

For Black History Month, we’ve put together a list of both recommended nonfiction books about important people and events and engaging fiction titles starring African American protagonists. Here’s a sampling of those new books to enjoy and share. In his autobiographical graphic novel March: Book One (cowritten by Andrew Aydin), Congressman John Lewis — the […]

I can do it myself!

lobel_taking care of mama rabbit

Preschool is all about gaining independence, and preschoolers aren’t afraid to let you know it. The protagonists of these new picture books test boundaries, learn big-kid tasks, and even begin to help others — all familiar experiences for preschoolers acquiring agency. The ten little rabbit siblings from Anita Lobel’s 10 Hungry Rabbits are back in […]