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Brave new worlds

bruchac_trail of the dead

Along with questions about technological and scientific advances, these recent YA novels — three sci-fi adventures and one science-centric historical fantasy — implicitly explore issues of social justice, inviting readers to think critically about our own world. Having escaped from prisonlike Haven in Killer of Enemies, a battle-hardened Lozen now leads her band of refugees […]

From the Editor – April 2016

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I invite you to have a listen to the Horn Book’s new podcast, started by editorial assistant Siân Gaetano with a prayer (from me) and a ton of enthusiasm (from Siân). We’ve covered such topics as boys and reading, adult books for children, my bête noir Twitter, and the mysteries of the Sorting Hat, which […]

Twentieth-century friends

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Here are four works of historical fiction with vivid characters whose relationship with friends and family will draw middle-grade readers into their stories. In G. Neri’s Tru & Nelle, Truman, an eccentric Little Lord Fauntleroy aspirant, and Nelle, a feisty girl with a boyish haircut, strike up an unlikely and unshakable friendship in Depression-era Monroeville, […]

Books mentioned in the April 2016 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Roxane Orgill Jazz Day: The Making of a Famous Photograph by Roxane Orgill, illus. by Francis Vallejo, Candlewick, 6–9 years. A variety of verses When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons by Julie Fogliano, illus. by Julie Morstad, Roaring Brook, 5–8 years. Wet Cement: A Mix of Concrete Poems by Bob […]

Look closely

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The following books encourage young children to use their powers of observation and look closely at the pages before them — and at the world around them. Starting with a clever, attention-grabbing title — I Hear a Pickle: (and Smell, See, Touch, and Taste It, Too!) — Rachel Isadora’s book about the five senses is […]

A variety of verses

morstad_when green becomes tomatoes

Poetry can rhyme, or not. It can take interesting shapes, or just use straightforward lines. These collections for primary and intermediate readers are great examples of the many forms poetry can take. Look for our What Makes Good Poetry? newsletter in your inbox on April 27, 2016. When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons […]

Five questions for Roxane Orgill

roxane orgill

Art Kane’s spectacular 1958 photograph of fifty-seven jazz greats, Harlem 1958, was the inspiration for Roxane Orgill’s poetry collection Jazz Day: The Making of a Famous Photograph (Candlewick, 6–9 years), illustrated by Francis Vallejo. With equal measure warmth and humor, confidence and awe, Orgill’s poems capture a thrilling moment in music history. 1. You mention […]