Subscribe to The Horn Book

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

vernick_kid from diamond street

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

mccarthy_wildest race ever

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

burleigh_solving the puzzle under the sea

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 […]

Review of W Is for Webster: Noah Webster and His American Dictionary

fern_w is for webster

W Is for Webster: Noah Webster and His American Dictionary by Tracey Fern; illus. by Boris Kulikov Primary   Ferguson/Farrar   32 pp. 11/15   978-0-374-38240-7   $17.99 This breezy picture-book biography introduces young readers to the man responsible for all those plain, sturdy dictionaries housed in elementary classrooms across America. Far from plain himself, Webster was tall with […]

Review of The Book Itch: Freedom, Truth & Harlem’s Greatest Bookstore

nelson_book itch

The Book Itch: Freedom, Truth & Harlem’s 
Greatest Bookstore by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson; illus. by R. Gregory Christie Primary, Intermediate   Carolrhoda   32 pp. 11/15   978-0-7613-3943-4   $17.99 e-book ed. 978-1-4677-4618-2   $17.99 If the central character of Nelson’s Boston Globe–Horn Book Award-winning No Crystal Stair (rev. 3/12) was the author’s great-uncle, Lewis Michaux, this picture book adaptation […]

Vaunda Micheaux Nelson on The Book Itch

Vaunda Micheaux Nelson

In our November/December issue, our editors asked Vaunda Micheaux Nelson about revisiting the source material of her BGHB Award–winning No Crystal Stair in new picture book The Book Itch. Read the full review of The Book Itch here. Horn Book Editors: What compelled you to revisit the material from No Crystal Stair to create your […]

Review of Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova

snyder_swan

Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova by Laurel Snyder; 
illus. by Julie Morstad Primary, Intermediate   Chronicle   48 pp. 8/15   978-1-4521-1890-1   $17.99 In this exquisite introduction to ballet great Anna Pavlova (1881–1931), the impressionistic text begins the night young Anna goes out into the big city to see The Sleeping Beauty performed. Like the […]

Five questions for Duncan Tonatiuh

Duncan Tonatiuh by Patty Flagger

Duncan Tonatiuh’s distinctive, instantly recognizable style, heavily influenced by Mixtec codices, perfectly complements his choice of subject matter and his own Latino heritage. His new book Funny Bones: Posada and His Day of the Dead Calaveras (Abrams, 6–9 years), which arrives just in time for El Día de los Muertos, is a picture book biography of […]

Review of Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer, Spirit of 
the Civil Rights Movement

weatherford_voice of freedom

Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer, Spirit of 
the Civil Rights Movement by Carole Boston Weatherford; 
illus. by Ekua Holmes Intermediate   Candlewick   45 pp. 8/15   978-0-7636-6531-9   $17.99 Weatherford’s latest picture-book biography (Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom, rev. 11/06; I, Matthew Henson, rev. 3/08; among many others) chronicles the life of civil […]

Are biographies a hard sell?

Out of the Woods

Can’t get kids to read biographies, you say? Have you tried reading aloud picture book biographies? It’s a sure way to hook kids into the lives, obstacles, and contributions of thousands of individuals, both historical and present day. But aren’t picture books only for young children? Never! Today’s picture book biographies are rich adventure stories […]