Tricks and treats

seeger_i used to be afraid

Spiders, trolls, mummified cats, and monsters with three heads. Oh, my! Perfect for Halloween story hours, here are four new picture books that will give young audiences something to be (not too) frightened about. For more new recommended Halloween picture books, see 2015 Horn Boo! I Used to Be Afraid by Laura Vaccaro Seeger is […]

Review of When Sophie’s Feelings Are Really, Really Hurt

bang_when sophie's feelings are really hurt

When Sophie’s Feelings Are Really, Really Hurt by Molly Bang; illus. by the author Primary   Blue Sky/Scholastic   40 pp. 10/15   978-0-545-78831-1   $17.99   g In Bang’s now-classic When Sophie Gets Angry…Really, Really Angry, Sophie coped with a volcanic episode of rage by communing with a favorite beech tree; both Sophie and the tree are back in […]

Review of Waiting


Waiting by Kevin Henkes; illus. by the author Preschool   Greenwillow   32 pp. 9/15   978-0-06-236843-0   $17.99 Library ed. 978-0-06-236844-7   $18.99   g Waiting is a huge part of every child’s life, and Henkes uses a light touch to address the topic. Five toys wait on a windowsill. An owl waits for the moon; a pig holding an […]

Review of Buddy and Earl

fergus_buddy and earl

Buddy and Earl by Maureen Fergus; illus. by Carey Sookocheff Primary   Groundwood   32 pp. 8/15   978-1-55498-712-2   $16.95 e-book ed. 978-1-55498-713-9   $14.95 Sweet, clueless mutt Buddy meets a “strange-looking thing” inside a box in the living room, who introduces himself as Earl. Earl claims to be first a racecar, then a giraffe, then a sea urchin, […]

2015 BGHB Picture Book Day

frazee_farmer and the clown

It’s BGHB Week! On Tuesday we recognized our Fiction Award winners and honorees. Yesterday we celebrated our Nonfiction Award recipients. It’s picture books’ turn! Read reviews of all of the 2015 picture book winners here; see below for more web extras about them. Join us on October 2–3, 2015, for the Horn Book at Simmons […]

Review of Double Trouble for Anna Hibiscus!

atinuke_double trouble for anna hibiscus

Double Trouble for Anna Hibiscus! by Atinuke; illus. by Lauren Tobia Preschool, Primary   Kane Miller   40 pp. 9/15   978-1-61067-367-9   $14.99 The latest Anna Hibiscus picture book (Splash, Anna Hibiscus!, rev. 11/13) set “in Africa. Amazing Africa” relates Anna’s adjustment to the arrival of twin baby brothers, referred to as “Double Trouble.” Title-page art shows Anna […]

Review of Fire Engine No. 9

austin_fire engine no. 9

Fire Engine No. 9 by Mike Austin; illus. by the author Preschool   Random   40 pp. 9/15   978-0-553-51095-9   $16.99 Library ed. 978-0-375-97428-1   $19.99 e-book ed. 978-0-553-51096-6   $10.99 Firefighter-wannabes ride along as Engine No. 9 races across town to put out a fire. At the firehouse, a loudspeaker blares, “ALERT! ALERT! FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!” The crew springs […]

In the waves, in the water…

stella_in the waves

I’m a big fan of young sister duet Lennon & Maisy (thanks to Jen Brabander*, for introducing me to their YouTube videos!), so I was intrigued to see their new picture book In the Waves (HarperCollins, April 2015) come in. Illustrated with warm ink-and-watercolor art by Steve Björkman, the book is based on Lennon & […]

Five questions for Eric Carle


In The Nonsense Show, iconic picture-book creator Eric Carle reveals depths of previously unknown daffiness. A human baby sits in a kangaroo’s pouch, a lion is a people-tamer, a mouse catches a cat. Adults will appreciate the matter-of-fact surrealism; kids will simply find the whole thing a riotous hoot. 1. There’s a true three-year-old’s sense […]

Stuff and nonsense


These new picture books put silly spins on their topics, with playful pigs, wily walruses, mischievous mice, hat-stealing creatures (not, this time, a fish) — and antic adventures for all.  In Anita Lobel’s Playful Pigs from A to Z, twenty-six pigs who are exploring the countryside find a field of “magical surprises”: brightly colored, freestanding […]