Shoshana Flax

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Review of The Book of Not Entirely Useful Advice

The Book of Not Entirely Useful Advice by A. F. Harrold; illus. by Mini Grey Intermediate    Bloomsbury    160 pp.    g 3/21    978-1-5476-0677-1    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5476-0678-8    $13.99 Harrold (The Song from Somewhere Else, rev. 5/17) presents poems (a few repurposed from previous collections) full of practical and not-so-practical insights on...

Review of Hard-Boiled Bugs for Breakfast: And Other Tasty Poems

Hard-Boiled Bugs for Breakfast: And Other Tasty Poems by Jack Prelutsky; illus. by Ruth Chan Intermediate    Greenwillow    144 pp.    g 1/21    978-0-06-301913-3    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-06-301915-7    $9.99 Prelutsky fans specifically, and fans of humorous poetry generally, should find just what they’re looking for here: nonsense confidently delivered in lines that...

Pop! Goes the E-book

Photo: wjenningsphotography/Getty Images. All montaged elements: Getty Images (various artists). Since we began working remotely, e-books have become a major part of our lives. They’re convenient in some ways, and necessary to our current situation, but there’s nothing like the “real” thing, especially when a book has tactile elements like...

Review of Osnat and Her Dove: The True Story of the World's First Female Rabbi

Osnat and Her Dove: The True Story of the World’s First Female Rabbi by Sigal Samuel; illus. by Vali Mintzi Primary, Intermediate    Levine Querido    40 pp.    g 2/21    978-1-64614-037-4    $17.99 Osnat Barzani (1590–1670) convinced her father, a rabbi, to teach her to read Hebrew, unusual as that was for a...

Review of The Mysterious Disappearance of Aidan S. (as Told to His Brother)

The Mysterious Disappearance of Aidan S. (as Told to His Brother) by David Levithan Intermediate, Middle School    Knopf    224 pp.    g 2/21    978-1-9848-4859-8    $16.99 Library ed.  978-1-9848-4860-4    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-9848-4861-1    $9.99 Lucas’s brother Aidan goes missing, which leads to the worried, sympathetic response one would expect from his community....

Review of Letters from Cuba

Letters from Cuba by Ruth Behar Intermediate, Middle School    Paulsen/Penguin    272 pp.    g 8/20    978-0-525-51647-7    $17.99 In 1938, eleven-year-old Jewish girl Esther is the first of her siblings to emigrate from Poland to Cuba, joining her father, who went three years earlier. Her letters to her sister, kept in a...

R.I.P. Norton Juster

I was lucky enough to hear Norton Juster (1929–2021) speak at the Boston Public Library a few years ago, and brought a copy of The Phantom Tollbooth that had been passed down from my mother to me. I half-apologized for its well-loved appearance. “It’s either well-loved or well-hated,” he said. “Well-loved,” I repeated....

Purim 2021

The pandemic persisted: But so did we: Happy Purim! For more on the Purim story and the "persistent" Queen Esther see the Guide/Reviews Database subject search Holidays--Purim. Also read Heidi Rabinowitz and Sadaf Siddique's Horn Book Magazine article "We Need Diverse Jewish and Muslim Books:  A Conversation" and visit the...

Dancing at the Pity Party: Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour 2021

Welcome to our stop on the 2021 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour! Author Tyler Feder was kind enough to answer my questions about Dancing at the Pity Party: A Dead Mom Graphic Memoir (Dial), this year’s Gold Medal winner in the Young Adult category. Feder’s look back at her...

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