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Review of Anything but Ordinary Addie: The True Story of Adelaide 
Herrmann, Queen of Magic

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Anything but Ordinary Addie: The True Story of Adelaide 
Herrmann, Queen of Magic by Mara Rockliff; 
illus. by Iacopo Bruno Primary, Intermediate    Candlewick    48 pp. 4/16    978-0-7636-6841-9    $17.99 Rockliff and Bruno (Mesmerized, rev. 1/15) bring the now-all-but-forgotten female magician Adelaide Herrmann back to center stage. Bold and spunky, Addie, in Rockliff’s strikingly vivid depiction, was […]

Review of Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions

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Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions by Chris Barton; illus. by Don Tate Primary, Intermediate    Charlesbridge   40 pp. 5/16    978-1-58089-297-1    $16.95 e-book ed.  978-1-60734-640-1    $9.99 From childhood, African American inventor Johnson was a tinkerer: 
“Lonnie loved building and creating. Ideas for inventions just kept on flowing.” We learn about how young Lonnie made model […]

Chris Barton on Whoosh!

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In our July/August 2016 issue, senior editor Elissa Gershowitz chatted with author Chris Barton about his new picture book biography Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions. Read the full review. Elissa Gershowitz: What is one of the challenges and/or rewards of writing a picture-book biography of a contemporary figure? Chris Barton: One big reward […]

Review of Just a Lucky So and So: The Story of Louis Armstrong

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Just a Lucky So and So: The Story of Louis Armstrong by Lesa Cline-Ransome; 
illus. by James Ransome Primary    Holiday    40 pp. 4/16    978-0-8234-3428-2    $16.95 e-book ed.  978-0-8234-3598-2    $16.95 Today’s child may know Louis Armstrong only as the trumpeter of “What a Wonderful World” or as a character in an old movie; the Ransomes’ newest […]

Arts and letters

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STEM’s great and all, but these picture-book biographies — about two fine artists, a musician, and a wordsmith — show that a career in arts and letters can be more than just a dream. In Cloth Lullaby: The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois, Amy Novesky presents an exquisite portrait of modern artist Louise Bourgeois, who […]

Review of You Never Heard of 
Casey Stengel?!

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You Never Heard of 
Casey Stengel?! by Jonah Winter; illus. by Barry Blitt Primary, Intermediate    Schwartz & Wade/Random    
40 pp. 3/16    978-0-375-87013-2    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-375-97013-9    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-375-98748-9    $10.99 Winter’s latest baseball book (You Never Heard of Sandy Koufax?!, rev. 3/09; You Never Heard of Willie Mays?!, rev. 1/13) hits the shelves just […]

Review of Cloth Lullaby: The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois

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Cloth Lullaby: The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois by Amy Novesky; 
illus. by Isabelle Arsenault Primary    Abrams    40 pp. 5/16    978-1-4197-1881-6    $18.95 Novesky returns to territory in which she shines — picture-book biographies of influential and strong-willed female artists (Georgia in Hawaii; Me, Frida) — with this exquisite portrait of modern artist Louise Bourgeois, who […]

Review of The Kid from Diamond Street: The Extraordinary Story of Baseball Legend Edith Houghton

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The Kid from Diamond Street: The Extraordinary Story of Baseball Legend Edith Houghton by Audrey Vernick; 
illus. by Steven Salerno Primary   Clarion   40 pp. 3/16   978-0-544-61163-4   $17.99   g Edith Houghton was “magic on the field,” a baseball legend of the 1920s. Playing starting shortstop for the 
all-women’s professional team the Philadelphia Bobbies, she drew fans […]

Winning sports picture books

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Cheating marathoners; a trailblazing sports reporter; a girl shortstop; and an illegal integrated b-ball game. Here are some nonfiction sports picture books that capture the dramatic action both on and off the track/field/court. Meghan McCarthy’s The Wildest Race Ever: The Story of the 1904 Olympic Marathon describes America’s first Olympic marathon, which took place in […]

Review of Solving the Puzzle 
Under the Sea: Marie Tharp Maps the Ocean Floor

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Solving the Puzzle 
Under the Sea: Marie Tharp Maps the Ocean Floor by Robert Burleigh; 
illus. by Raúl Colón Primary   Wiseman/Simon   40 pp. 1/16   978-1-4814-1600-9   $17.99 e-book ed. 978-1-4814-1601-6   $10.99 The duo behind Look Up!: Henrietta Leavitt, Pioneering Woman Astronomer spotlights another groundbreaking woman scientist: Marie Tharp, the oceanographic cartographer whose mapping of the Atlantic […]