I’ll be watching you…

elf in the fridge

Elf on the Shelf sticks around post-holidays to keep an eye on our New Year’s resolutions.

Seriously, what the fuck is the point?

Seriously

  Akashic Books is releasing a “children’s version” of Go the Fuck to Sleep. So now parents can harangue their children to sleep for realz.

Parents and picture books

I review three picture books about little superheroes for the New York Times this week. (I didn’t much like any of them.) Reviewing for a newspaper (or whatever it is we call them now) is really different from what we need to do at the Horn Book. You get more words, but you have to […]

Board-book-a-palooza

cloudy with a chance

Two new entries (both August) in Little Simon’s A Classic Board Book series, which repackages well-known picture books as board books, are on opposite ends of the adaptation spectrum. Emily Gravett’s Orange Pear Apple Bear makes by far the more natural translation. Gravett’s spare text, ample white space, humor, and eye-pleasing illustrations in a soft […]

Bummer of a summer movie

judy moody movie poster

After posting last week about Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer movie tie-in books, I went to see how Judy translated to the big screen. I had already read some less-than-stellar reviews of the movie, and the novelization based on the screenplay didn’t live up to the original nine books. Even these warnings did […]

In the What Were They Thinking? department…

Jean McElroy’s Let’s Count 123! (Simon and Schuster, May), a pleasant new board book that counts ten of the celebratory objects at a child’s birthday party (“1 cake / 2 candles / 3 party hats”), bills itself as “both chunky and lightweight!” The inside pages are not cardboard but paper-covered flat boxes (I think). So, […]

Can you Beliebe this?

Justin Bieber is stalking me. First he was in my email (in a new Peta2 ad) and home snail mail (on the cover of Vanity Fair; my roommate exclaimed in dismay, “This is the last issue of my subscription?”). Then he was in the HB office with his memoir First Step 2 Forever — “includes […]

Freaks and Zombies

Ripley’s Believe It or Not!: Enter If You Dare! is the seventh compendium of all things bizarre, freakish, and grotesque from around the world. You know the stuff: a sculpture of an Australian actress made with 24,000 peaches, an eighteen-inch-long fingernail, mice kebabs, a turtle with two heads and six legs, a man with 240 […]

Outside the lines

Lefty press Reach & Teach has published Sometimes the Spoon Runs Away with Another Spoon, a coloring book by Jacinta Bunnell and Nathaniel Kusinitz. The “tea, trains and tiaras for everyone!” message throughout is winningly lighthearted, even if such jokes as “Marriage is so gay” (illustrated with a wedding cake topped by two brides) are […]

The Prez’s picture book

Although President Obama’s Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters (Knopf) came in too late for review in the Horn Book Magazine, I thought I might offer a few comments here. Like most celebrity picture books (by which I mean picture books written by people famous for doing something other than writing books […]