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Archives for July 2012

Et tu, witches?

I recently took A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness out of the library; soon after, a paperback version of it (and its sequel, Shadow of Night) magically arrived in our office. (“Coincidence? Or psychic phenomenon?” Anyone remember that TV commercial?) I’d been enjoying this smart story of Diana, a brilliant thirty-something Oxford scholar and […]

“My Favorite Newbery” matching game featuring Robin McKinley

Robin McKinley won the 1985 Newbery for her high fantasy The Hero and the Crown, in which Aerin, the outcast daughter of the king, battles the great dragon Maur. Can you guess which of these Newbery-winning books is the author’s favorite? a) Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi (2003) b) Number the Stars by […]

Else Holmelund Minarik (1920-2012)

Else Holmelund Minarik, author of the Little Bear series of easy readers, died on July 12, 2012, at the age of 91. Little Bear, illustrated by Maurice Sendak, was one of the first I Can Read! titles published by Harper & Row, in 1957; in 1962, Sendak received a Caldecott Honor for Little Bear’s Visit […]

In Front of My House app review

At the meeting when the Horn Book staff decided starred reviews for the May/June Magazine issue, we read aloud Marianne Dubuc’s picture book Animal Masquerade. It took a good fifteen minutes (each one of them absolutely delightful). The app In Front of My House (Winged Chariot, 2011) based on Dubuc’s book of the same title, […]

Updated sports booklist — just in time for Olympics reading!

Lolly, who just returned from a whirlwind trip to London, was sweet enough to bring us a pre-Summer Olympics treat: Cadbury chocolate gold medals! Speaking of the 2012 Summer Olympics, we’ve just updated our Horn Book Magazine–recommended sports books list with recently published fiction and nonfiction for all ages. Read along with all the Olympics […]

Sports books

The books recommended below were all published within the last several years and reviewed by The Horn Book Magazine. Grade levels are only suggestions; the individual child is the real criterion. Picture books Suggested grade level: K–3 Crouching Tiger written by Ying Chang Compestine; illus. by Yan Nascimbene (Candlewick) Grandpa teaches his impatient grandson Ming […]

ChLA at Simmons

This year I attended the Children’s Literature Association‘s annual conference for the first time — an exciting rite of passage for a children’s lit graduate student! Scholars from all over the world came to Simmons College, my home university, from June 14-16, 2012, to talk about children’s literature. And Gregory Maguire serenaded everyone. It was […]

Donald J. Sobol (1924-2012)

Author Donald J. Sobol died on July 11, 2012, in Miami, Florida, at the age of eighty-seven. He is best known for his long-running and beloved boy detective series Encyclopedia Brown. The series was honored with a special Edgar Award in 1976 and inspired both a comic strip (1978-1980) and a television show (1989). Sobol’s […]

Review of Lies, Knives, and Girls in Red Dresses

Lies, Knives, and Girls in Red Dresses by Ron Koertge; illus. by Andrea Dezsö High School     Candlewick     88 pp. 7/12     978-0-7636-4406-2     $19.99 A much-honored poet and novelist retells, in free verse and from various points of view, twenty-three familiar tales (mostly Grimm, Andersen, and Perrault). With a contemporary sensibility and voice, Koertge pitches directly to […]

Five Questions for Caroline B. Cooney

Veteran YA novelist Caroline B. Cooney is providing the keynote address for School Library Journal‘s upcoming virtual conference, SummerTeen: A Celebration of YA Books, and I thought this would be a good time to ask her about her electronic life–via email, of course.   Roger Sutton: Your latest novel The Lost Songs (Delacorte) relies on […]