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Archives for April 2018

#NESCBWI18 recap

The 2018 New England SCBWI annual conference — with the theme “Dream. Explore. Create.” — was held in Springfield, MA, April 20th–22nd.  I’ve attended this conference most years since 2008, and was aware of some welcome new measures: attendees are now required to read the SCBWI anti-harassment policy before registering, and the (always large and […]

Review of I Got It!

I Got It! by David Wiesner; illus. by the author Primary    Clarion    32 pp.    g 4/18    978-0-544-30902-9    $17.99 A boy stands watching a group of kids milling around a baseball diamond. He approaches the group and is (wordlessly) directed to the outfield. The game begins; the first batter smacks the ball. “I got it!” Instead, […]

Alice Provensen (1918-2018)

Author and illustrator Alice Provensen died April 23, 2018, in San Clemente, California. She was ninety-nine. With her late husband and collaborator Martin Provensen, she illustrated more than forty children’s books, including The Glorious Flight: Across the Channel with Louis Blériot, winner of the 1984 Caldecott Medal, and A Visit to William Blake’s Inn: Poems […]

Week in Review, April 23rd-27th

This week on hbook.com… From the March/April 2018 issue of The Horn Book Magazine: “An Easy Reader Renaissance” and “From The Guide: New for New Readers” Spring 2018 Publishers’ Previews: Wendy Mass & Rebecca Stead, Brian Lies, J. S. Puller, Sara Saedi, and Randy Ribay Reviews of the Week: Picture Book: People Don’t Bite People […]

The opposite of “easy”

We’ve passed the early reading stage in my house, but I love the Magazine’s new column on books for beginning readers, which declares that we are in an “easy reader renaissance.” I can see why. Books for kids learning to read are being published in all shapes, sizes, and formats, from the traditional I Can […]

Lovely Rita and the Sutherland lecture

A reminder that next Friday, May 4th, finds me introducing Rita Williams-Garcia for her Sutherland lecture, “Look Here. Not There,” at 7:30PM at the Harold Washington Library Center in Chicago. Admission to the program is free, but you have to sign up at chipublib.org/sutherland. I hope to see you there! The Sutherland Lecture committee thanks HarperCollins […]

From The Guide: New for New Readers

As the Horn Book editors discuss in this issue, we’re experiencing an “Easy Reader Renaissance,” with publishers exploring all the possibilities of these mainstays of children’s literature. The recommended examples below offer a glimpse at the wide variety of easy readers that are available for the equally wide variety of children who are beginning their […]

Review of This Is Our Constitution: Discover America with 
a Gold Star Father

This Is Our Constitution: Discover America with 
a Gold Star Father by Khizr Khan with Anne Quirk Intermediate, Middle School    Knopf    216 pp. 10/17    978-1-5247-7091-4    $16.99 Library ed.  978-1-5247-7092-1    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5247-7093-8    $10.99 This clearly written, straightforward study of the U.S. Constitution, written by Pakistan-born Khan (who spoke passionately at the 2016 Democratic National […]

Review of The Prince and the Dressmaker

The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang; illus. by the author Middle School, High School    First Second/Roaring Brook    282 pp. 2/18    978-1-250-15985-4    $24.99 Paper ed.  978-1-62672-363-4    $16.99 With a setting and palette reminiscent of Disney’s Cinderella and a setup involving a royal ball, this graphic novel has all the trappings of a rags-to-riches romance. […]

Review of People Don’t Bite People

People Don’t Bite People by Lisa Wheeler; illus. by Molly Idle Preschool    Atheneum    40 pp. 4/18    978-1-4814-9082-5    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-9083-2    $10.99 In subversively lilting rhymed verse, Wheeler enumerates the reasons “people don’t bite people” and suggests alternatives: “It’s good to bite a biscuit. / It’s good to bite a plum. / It’s BAD to […]