Walter Dean Myers (1937-2014)

Photo by Constance Myers

We are terribly sad to learn of the death of Walter Dean Myers on Tuesday from pneumonia. As an author, his accolades are nearly too numerous to count: National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, Margaret A. Edwards Award winner, (first) Printz Award winner, Coretta Scott King Author Award winner, Newbery honoree, Boston Globe-Horn Book honoree, […]

Walter Dean Myers on Fallen Angels

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This Q&A with author Walter Dean Myers appeared on the Zola Books blog on November 7th, 2013, and was shared with the Horn Book by Emma McKinstry of Goodman Media International, Inc. See Betty Carter’s discussion of themes in Fallen Angels, its sequel Sunrise over Fallujah, and its prequel Invasion here. The human element of […]

Review of Invasion

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Invasion by Walter Dean Myers Middle School, High School     Scholastic     218 pp. 10/13     978-0-545-38428-5     $17.99 e-book ed. 978-0-545-57659-8     $17.99 When Josiah “Woody” Wedgewood enlists in the army, he is immediately sent to England to prepare for the Normandy invasion, harboring only vague ideas about the nature of war. But when he lands on […]

Walter Dean Myers’s War “Trilogy”

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In each of his three books about war — Invasion (2013), set during WWII; Fallen Angels (1988), Vietnam; and Sunrise over Fallujah (2008), the second Iraq War — Water Dean Myers asks readers to immerse themselves in a specific conflict from the point of view of a particular character. These wars are distinct both geographically […]

Guess who?: Secrets revealed!

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A. Arthur Geisert B. Cynthia Rylant C. D.B. Johnson D. Barry Moser E. Martha Brooks F. Marilyn Nelson G. Katherine Paterson H. Helen Oxenbury I. Brian Pinkney J. Bill Martin Jr K. Peter Sís L. Walter Dean Myers M. Christopher Myers N. Michael Rosen O. Paul Fleischman P. Avi Q. Lynne Rae Perkins R. Jerry […]

Following in Their Fathers’ Paths

steptoe_mufaro's beautiful daughters

When you follow in the path of your father, you learn to walk like him. — Ashanti proverb (from In Daddy’s Arms I Am Tall) In the late 1960s, modern African-American literature for children was just coming into its own. For some of us, the 1967 publication of Virginia Hamilton’s Zeely was a turning point, […]

Earl Martin Phalen interviews Walter Dean Myers

Photo by Constance Myers

On a visit with our downstairs neighbors Reach Out and Read, I learned that their CEO Earl Martin Phalen blogs for The Huffington Post on the topics of early education, literacy, and parenting. Phalen recently interviewed National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Walter Dean Myers about literacy and his ambassadorial platform “Reading is not an […]

Happy new year, and welcome to a perfect new-year baby

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Here we are in Provincetown with friend Pam (other friend Lori was taking the picture), replete from days of Chex Mix and chocolate and Yahtzee, a game I thought I had mastered after years of battling AI opponents only to lose every time in this my first experience with the non-virtual dice variety. Also did […]

Stories out of School: Reading Became My Life

My last two years in high school were absolutely miserable. In the junior and senior years of a highly competitive school, one’s whole existence becomes the frantic preparation to enter the next highly competitive situation. Even the most casual conversations turned to SAT scores and grade point averages. What were the Ivies looking for? What […]

Compass Points: Escalating Offenses

“I admit I’ve made mistakes, but I’m not a bad human being.” It was a phrase I heard dozens of times during the series of prison interviews I conducted. The young, articulate man who sat on the opposite side of the long table had gunned down two guards in a botched armored car robbery. Both […]