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Archives for March 2018

My editor Lillian

My first professional writing about children’s books was for School Library Journal, beginning my reign of terror with a letter to the editor about–my critics will love this–what I saw as excessive feminist ideology used in the SLJ review to bring down a book I had found awfully good, Sue Ellen Bridgers’ Notes for Another Life. (Writers: when your […]

Review of The Poet X

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo High School    HarperTeen    361 pp.    g 3/18    978-0-06-266280-4    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-06-266282-8    $9.99 Fifteen-year-old Xiomara, whose name means “one who is ready for war,” has been fighting her whole life. The self-described “brown and big and angry” Dominican girl from Harlem furiously confronts catcalling boys, chafes under her Catholic […]

My teacher Zena

Behold, in the photograph at left, an embodiment of the phrase dimples of iron. If Louise was the one who led me to children’s librarianship, Zena Sutherland gave me my focus on children’s books. I hadn’t even intended to take her class, but my friend Marybeth convinced me it would be fun to take together. […]

Review of The Little Red Fort

The Little Red Fort by Brenda Maier; 
illus. by Sonia Sánchez Primary    Scholastic    40 pp.    g 3/18    978-0-545-85919-6    $17.99 Young Ruby (whose “mind was always full of ideas”) decides to build a fort in her yard. She asks her brothers for help, but in true “Little Red Hen” fashion, no one agrees: “Oscar Lee pretended […]

Week in Review, March 12th-16th

This week on… March 2018 issue of Notes from the Horn Book: #5Q for Winifred Conkling on Votes for Women, inspiring nonfiction about the childhoods of female trailblazers, preschool books about interspecies friendships, wacky intermediate fantasy novels, and YA starring girls who save themselves Reviews of the Week: Picture Book: Vincent Comes Home by Jessixa […]

My friend Louise

Please never think that I am unaware of the privilege being a white guy in children’s books  has afforded me. But it was women who gave me a career, and here in honor of Women’s History Month and #kidlitwomen, I would like to tell you about five lady librarians whose impact on my life has been […]

March extracurriculars: Library Legislation and Literacy as Liberation

Last week I took two field trips away from the office (three, counting A Wrinkle in Time). Tuesday, March 6th, was Library Legislative Day at the Massachusetts State House in downtown Boston (across from the old, old Horn Book office on Beacon Hill; and look at it this week during the #NationalSchoolWalkout protest!). I went to […]

Intern with us!

Interested in learning more about the children’s book industry, book reviewing, or how magazines and review journals operate? A Horn Book internship is a great place to start. Our editorial interns are an invaluable help in managing the gazillion books that enter and leave our office (and if the phrase “gazillion books” sounds appealing to […]

Review of In the Past

In the Past by David Elliott; 
illus. by Matthew Trueman Primary    Candlewick    48 pp.    g 3/18    978-0-7636-6073-4    $17.99 This collection of imaginative, clever poems about ancient animals, all but one extinct, moves chronologically from trilobites in the Cambrian era to woolly mammoths from our current geologic time period (Quaternary), with good representation across dinosaur, sea, […]


Our Russell reviews A Wrinkle in Time based on a viewing the Horn Bookers took in together last week, in the legendary Before Time when one could get out of the house. The walking distance to a good movie theater is a definite perk of our location, and I do love these reserved movie seats you […]