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Celebrating America's Moon Landing

Today marks the 50th anniversary of the launch of NASA’s Apollo 11, the first space mission to land on the moon. (This Saturday, July 20th will be the anniversary of the actual moon landing and Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin's moon walk.) CBS, which broadcast the historic event live in...

Lift Every Voice: My Grandparents' House

As a child, I loved to visit my grandparents. Their home was very different from ours. My grandmother had purchased it late in life with her own money, she would proudly say. In the house were cherry-wood end tables with scalloped edges and leather insets, beautiful ornate ceramic peacocks that...

This is a test.

Hello, all, this is my maiden post for our new website, and I hope I soon have something more interesting to say than "this is a test." But, this is a test. Isn't it fascinating?...

Lift Every Voice: History and Stories

In addition to this year being the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Coretta Scott King Book Awards, it is also fifty years since I graduated from high school. My foundational education provided very few opportunities to read books by African American writers, either for school or pleasure. Interestingly,...

Make Way for Ashley! A Birthday Tribute

A poem written on the occasion of Ashley Bryan's 96th birthday.   What a Morning! Sing to the Sun!  Walk Together Children! Uh-Huh! Uh-Huh!  Dancing Granny’s movin’ her feet.  It’s Ashley’s day! Flying-High sweet!    It’s been said that The Night Has Ears.  Now the story’s told — his birthday’s...

"Raising a Lifelong Reader" tips from PBS Kids

Eagled-eyed Horn Book Creative Director Lolly Robinson alerted us to this 2016 article, "Raising a Lifelong Reader: Tips for Reading with Your Child," by longtime Horn Book Guide reviewer Cyrisse Jaffe. Cyrisse is editorial project manager in the education department of WGBH, our local PBS station. My own children's love...

Social issues today (July 2019)

For today's activist teens who are engaging with tough issues in the world around them, here are four recent YA nonfiction titles (three print and one audiobook version) to provide further context and enhance understanding — and compassion. In Ink Knows No Borders: Poems of the Immigrant and Refugee Experience,...

From the Editor (July 2019)

Last month I invited you to take a look at our new iteration of The Horn Book Guide, and now I ask you to visit the all-new Hbook.com, the Horn Book's home address on the internet. It is a work in progress — aren't we all? — but there is...

Books mentioned in the July 2019 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Kyle Lukoff When Aidan Became a Brother by Kyle Lutkoff, illustrated by Kaylani Juanita, Lee & Low, 4–7 years. B is for babies You Are New by Lucy Knisley, Chronicle, 2–5 years. Baby Goes to Market by Atinuke, illus. by Angela Brooksbank, Candlewick, 2–5 years. B Is...

Five questions for Kyle Lukoff (July 2019)

School librarian Kyle Lukoff's heartfelt picture book When Aidan Became a Brother (illustrated by Kaylani Juanita; Lee & Low, 4–7 years) begins, "When Aidan was born, everyone thought he was a girl" — perfectly encapsulating the disconnect many very young transgender/gender-creative kids feel. As his family prepares to welcome a...

More magic! (July 2019)

These sequels encourage intermediate and middle-school readers to return to favorite fantasy worlds…or to go back and start each series from the beginning. In Love Sugar Magic: A Sprinkle of Spirits, the second book set in and around the Logroño family's Amor y Azúcar Panaderia bakery, Leonora's friend Caroline tries...

B is for babies (July 2019)

Babies need good books, and so do their big siblings! Together, these warm and reassuring new picture books for preschool and primary-age children celebrate a baby's growth from in utero to first birthday. See also our Five Questions interview with Kyle Lukoff, author of When Aidan Became a Brother, in...

Lift Every Voice: In the Presence of Royalty

My heart was racing like Secretariat, even though I had practiced my acceptance speech, as I nervously approached the podium. They had called my name to receive the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award for my work on The Origin of Life on Earth: An African Creation Myth. The CSK Breakfast...

Lift Every Voice: History Comes Alive

It was an adult book — The Chaneysville Incident by David Bradley — that inspired me to try my hand at writing historical fiction for children. I’ll never forget the author’s harrowing description of one of the characters fleeing a pack of slave hunters. I have always been a history...

2019 CSK–Virginia Hamilton Award Acceptance by Pauletta Brown Bracy

Good Coretta-Scott-King-Book-Awards-Breakfast-Sunday morning! I stand before you as the fifth recipient of the Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement in the category of practitioner and in the company of the distinguished colleagues who have come before me: Dr. Henrietta Mays Smith, Demetria Tucker, Deborah D. Taylor, and Dr....

Table of Contents: July/August 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: ALA Awards

Features Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Award Acceptance by Pauletta Brown Bracy "The Year in Words and Pictures" by Elissa Gershowitz and Martha V. Parravano Newbery Medal Acceptance by Meg Medina A profile of Meg Medina by R. J. Palacio   CSK Author Award Acceptance by Claire Hartfield A profile of Claire...

Editorial: Try to Remember (July/August 2019)

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Thank goodness the inclusion of the 2019 ALA awards speeches in this issue allows me to talk about the Coretta Scott King Book Awards again (see our just-previous May/June issue celebrating the CSK’s fiftieth anniversary). Congratulations to all the winners, as well as to those receiving Legacy, Newbery, and Caldecott...

Week in Review, June 24th - 28th

This week on hbook.com... From the July/August 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: ALA Awards: Children’s Literature Legacy Award acceptance by Christopher Myers on behalf of Walter Dean Myers Newbery Medal acceptance by Meg Medina and profile by R. J. Palacio Caldecott Medal acceptance by Sophie Blackall and profile by...

My ALA 2019

My ALA began on Friday afternoon with a lunch hosted by Holiday House for their O'Dell Award winner Lesa Cline-Ransome, for Finding Langston. She's a Malden girl! So we two townies had a blast with back-in-the-day. Lesa's husband James and I discussed sartorial choices for that evening's Event, the CSK...

"WE ARE HERE": queer books beyond subtext

Today marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York City, an event that laid the groundwork for the first Gay Pride parade and celebrations that have evolved into a month-long recognition of LGBTQ+ identities and communities.During my 1990s childhood in a pervasively conservative, Christian, Southern environment, I...

2019 CSK Illustrator Award Acceptance by Ekua Holmes

Ekua Holmes. Photo courtesy of Ekua Holmes.Congratulations to all of the 2019 awardees on the podium today. Along with you, I am deeply honored to receive this award, on its fiftieth anniversary, given in the name of Coretta Scott King — a woman whom I deeply admire for her work...

Profile of 2019 CSK Illustrator Award winner Ekua Holmes

Ekua Holmes is love. I am but one grateful member of an immense and inspired community that cherishes, and is beloved by, Ekua. At its heart, this community is local, centered on the place of Ekua’s birth — Roxbury, Massachusetts — via Arkansas and the U.S. American South, via Africa....

Louise Payson Latimer: Pioneer of Library Service to Children in Washington, DC

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Portrait of Louise Latimer, 1914, painted by Suzanne Warriner Most children’s book connoisseurs have heard of New York Public Library’s Anne Carroll Moore, if only for her outspoken opinions on what was not good literature (including E. B. White’s Stuart Little). Many know of Boston Public Library’s Alice M. Jordan,...

2019 CSK Author Award Acceptance by Claire Hartfield

When I was a young girl, growing up on the South Side of Chicago, I was lucky enough to have weekly visits with my grandmother, Thelma Shepherd Rone, whom the adults called Dearest or Day but whom I always knew as Grammie. I was a quiet little girl, but I...

Profile of 2019 CSK Author Award winner Claire Hartfield

Claire Hartfield is a storyteller. It might be fair to say that she is a born storyteller, just-right words flowing through her pen with ease, creating images that allow her readers to see, to hear, even to breathe just as Claire did while writing. This gift might have come to...

ALA in D.C.

I'll be reporting tomorrow about My ALA but in the meantime wanted to make sure you knew we have posted the acceptance speeches and profiles of the Caldecott, Newbery, and Legacy winners, which together appear in print in the Horn Book Magazine issue being held by Carol Merrill seated to...

2019 Caldecott Medal Acceptance by Sophie Blackall

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Hello, hello, hello!Members of the 2019 Caldecott committee, my agents, my family, fellow authors and illustrators, publishers, librarians, beacons of the community—As the 2019 Caldecott committee gathered around a phone, early on a cold January morning in Seattle, I was having dinner in sweltering Myanmar, trying not to picture them....

Apply for a fall Horn Book internship + meet intern Katie!

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...

Hello Studio: A Profile of 2019 Caldecott Medal winner Sophie Blackall

On the highest floor of an old factory at the edge of Brooklyn, overlooking the water, is a skylit artists’ studio. This profile is drawn from interviews with the seven children’s book creators who, over the years, have shared that studio with Sophie Blackall.“Drawn in Brooklyn,” 2010 Photo: Matt Carr.Sergio...

2019 Newbery Medal Acceptance by Meg Medina

Photo: Petite Shards Productions.Good evening. Muy buenas noches.I’m so happy to be with all of you here tonight, and to share this incredible moment on stage with Sophie [Blackall] and to help honor the enormous legacy of Walter Dean Myers. My deepest congratulations to all the winners and honorees of...

Profile of 2019 Newbery Medal winner Meg Medina

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Meg Medina and R. J. Palacio at Niagara Falls, circa 1979. Photo: Marco Jaramillo.Imagine a girl, wavy brown hair, big smile, bright eyes, on the tall side, long legs and arms, in constant motion. (If she were a baby animal, she’d be a colt.) Imagine this girl is your best...

2019 Children’s Literature Legacy Award Acceptance by Christopher Myers on behalf of Walter Dean Myers

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Hey Pop,It’s been a minute since I’ve written you a proper letter, mostly because I don’t know your address or even if they have email wherever you are.When you were around, we’d write each other lots of letters, even if we knew we’d be meeting up for breakfast the next...

Lift Every Voice: Seeing Stars

I’ve been marinating in childhood memories this past year as I worked to complete my upcoming memoir, Ordinary Hazards. Among the memories there were, as you might imagine, many moments that marked my path as a writer: my first poetry reading at Countee Cullen Library in Harlem, receiving my first...

Week in Review, June 17th - 21st

  This week on hbook.com... We're at ALA Annual this weekend! Visit booth #725 on Monday for a copy of the hot-off-the-presses July/August Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: ALA Awards, featuring Newbery, Caldecott, CSK, and Legacy acceptance speeches. From May/June 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: The CSK Book Awards...

All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah near Santa Monica*: 2019 AJL annual conference recap

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This year’s Association of Jewish Libraries annual conference was held June 17th through 19th in Woodland Hills, CA. That’s in the Los Angeles area, near Topanga Canyon, lots of beaches, and plenty of other beautiful scenery. As a member of the Sydney Taylor Book Award committee, I was forced to attend.It’s...

#ALAAC19 Booth 725

Roger, Martha, and Elissa will be at ALA Annual #ALAAC19 in Washington, DC, this weekend. The Horn Book's booth is 725 -- please stop by. The swag is good. We'll have posters of 2019 Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall's July/August Horn Book Magazine cover (at right; hello, lighthouse!). On Monday morning...

Lift Every Voice: On My Fire Escape

The path leading to Ray Charles began on the fire escape of a rent-controlled apartment in Bedford-Stuyvesant. It was here that I discovered Paul Laurence Dunbar’s Little Brown Baby, Shakespeare’s “Et tu, Brute?” and Willard Motley’s Knock on Any Door; scurried down a rabbit hole; and walked on Gwendolyn Brooks’s...

Think lovely thoughts

I'm off tomorrow for ALA in D.C. and am wondering if 20,000 librarians could accomplish what 1200 hippies could not. Otherwise you will find me mainly in the exhibit hall with Al while Martha and Elissa stalk the sessions. Our booth number is 725, and we will be giving away...

Lift Every Voice: "You Are the Author!"

Photo: Bill McGuinnessI can’t remember a time when I have not been drawing and painting!As a child I loved picture books and memorized Mother Goose poems. I attended public elementary school in the Bronx, New York. In kindergarten, the teacher taught us the alphabet. She asked the students to draw a picture...

Undercover Reading

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My daughter and her husband caught their six-year-old reading in bed after lights out and celebrated.Quietly, of course. They didn’t want her to know they’d seen her taking advantage of the fading daylight coming through her bedside window. Still, they managed to take a picture of her, surrounded by stuffed...

Fresh Ginger and Garlic: A Conversation with Nikki Giovanni

Kwame and Nikki. Photo: Beatrice Saba.Over the past twenty years, I’ve been a vegan, a vegetarian, and a pescatarian. There have been only three periods in my adult life when I’ve indulged in the pleasures of meat. One was right after winning the Newbery, when I found myself craving cheeseburgers....

Upcoming CSK gala -- ridiculous shoes

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I am so excited to attend the CSK Gala at the Library of Congress on Friday night during ALA, honoring the fiftieth anniversary of the Coretta Scott King Book Awards. See the EMIERT website for more on "Coretta Scott King Book Awards: 50 Years Strong," and of course check out...

Week in Review, June 10th - 14th

  This week on hbook.com... Welcome to the newly revamped Horn Book Guide Online! June 2019 Notes from the Horn Book: 5Q for Mariko Tamaki, middle grade and YA for Pride Month, picture books for Father's Day, and easy-reader BFFs June 2019 Horn Book Herald: Boston Globe–Horn Book Awards Edition,...

Happy Father's Day 2019 from Family Reading

Happy Father's Day (on Sunday) to those who celebrate! Here are some articles, books, and links to make Dad (and Pop and Papi and Granddad and all others of any gender who hold that place in a child's life) feel loved and appreciated."Picture Books for Father's Day." From our brand-new-and-improved...

Aristotle and Dante Discover an Alternate Universe

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I'm quite taken with Michelle Ann Abate's essay about Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secret of the Universe in the hot-off-the-pixels new issue of Research on Diversity in Youth Literature, whose theme this time around is "Queer Futurities." Much to my shame, Abate points out something about that novel that...

Five questions for 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Picture Book Award winners Maxine Beneba Clarke and Van Thanh Rudd

A talented pair from Down Under, author Maxine Beneba Clarke and illustrator Van Thanh Rudd are the co-creators of this year’s Boston Globe–Horn Book Picture Book Award winner The Patchwork Bike (Candlewick, 5–8 years). Rudd’s playful, tactile illustrations (done on scrap cardboard) perfectly complement the childlike sensibility of Clarke’s spare,...

Lift Every Voice: Dreams Never Realized

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My mom and dad truly laid the foundation for my writing life by reading to me and my siblings every night — giving me a heart for stories. And there were many moments that followed that inspired my literary journey. Here is one.In February of 1991, my father showed me...

National Caribbean American Heritage Month 2019

June is National Caribbean American Heritage Month, which celebrates “the significance of Caribbean people and their descendants in the history and culture of the United States.” This past Monday, the City of Cambridge held a reception at City Hall; see the graphic above for additional events and celebrations around Massachusetts.Don’t...

My friend Susan

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Flowers by Susan BloomWe said goodbye yesterday to a friend of mine and of the Horn Book, Susan P. Bloom. I met Susan thirty years ago, when she and Cathie Mercier invited me to teach Simmons's Summer Children's Literature Institute. That year's theme, "Masquerade" was aptly borne out when Susan...

Five questions for Mariko Tamaki

Photo: Shawnee Custalow.Charismatic, too-cool Laura Dean is many things — but a good girlfriend is not one of them. Mariko Tamaki (author of Skim and This One Summer, both illustrated by Jillian Tamaki) and Rosemary Valero-O'Connell's relatable, warm, and witty graphic novel Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me (Roaring...

Imaginative Spaces and Connecting Lines: SFF and the CSK

According to Nichelle Nichols, the first Black woman cast as a main character on a major television show, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a Trekkie. In fact, she stated that it was his support that prompted her to continue her role as Lieutenant Uhura on Star Trek even though...

From the Editor: June 2019

We are thrilled — yes, thrilled — to announce the (re)launch of The Horn Book Guide, begun in 1990 as a semiannual print publication. It's been through a few iterations (anyone remember the CD-ROMs?) and we are happy to give its latest a home here. Please go over and poke...

Black Creators for Children

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The Coretta Scott King Book Awards are part of a profoundly rich history of African American children’s literature. It is a history that stretches back into the nineteenth century through the early-twentieth century Brownies’ Book magazine and the mid-twentieth-century Ebony Jr! publication.It is a history that encompasses the bibliographies of...

Susan P. Bloom (1938-2019)

The Horn Book office will be closed this afternoon as we attend the funeral of Susan P. Bloom, Director Emerita of the Center for the Study of Children's Literature at Simmons University. Susan was a great Friend of the Horn Book and a beloved mentor to many of us. She...

A new Horn Book Guide

Welcome to the new Horn Book Guide! Current subscribers to the Guide, whether print, digital, or database, should this morning be receiving instructions for logging in; for those who are not (yet? Please, God) go over and poke around. The two new features I like best are the ability of...

Because of course. #Pride

Massachusetts #LibrariansWithSuperpowers at Boston #Pride 2019...

Week in Review, June 3rd - 7th

This week on hbook.com...Preview July/August 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: ALA Awards featuring original cover art by Sophie BlackallICYMI: Presenting the 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Award winners! Click to read the press release, watch the announcement video, and read reviews of the winning titles.From the May/June 2019 Horn Book...

Good enough to eat, a.k.a. thank an art teacher

Today is National Doughnut Day. Moving beyond the editorial debate (donut v. doughnut) and the regional debate (Dunks v. Krispy Kreme v. Starbucks), I wanted to take this opportunity to encourage people to thank an art teacher. Ours is Mr. Wynn, and this hugely child-friendly project pictured above consisted of...

Lift Every Voice: Necessary Foundations

The sound of her voice. The comfort of her lap. The colors and words on the pages of the books tucked around us. My mother read to me from the time I was born. I vaguely remember a poem called “The Rock-a-By Lady.” I found out later it was by...

Lift Every Voice: “Four Women” and Me

Photo: Jati LindsayWhen I was fourteen, my mother caught me lumbering down the hallway toward my room cradling a turntable. The turntable was hers and had been in the family for decades, stored in the basement of our house. I’d never heard any sound come from it. Not at the...

Feeling mighty lonesome, haven't slept a wink

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On my desk this morning.Spurred by Globe columnist Devra First's thoughts, Boston is a-bubble with discussion about whether it is ethically okay to buy Peet's coffee, given the company's Nazi history. The column specifically references, as the columnist's favorite, Major Dickason's Blend, which to my ears has always sounded ineffably...

A Vision for the CSK: Past, Present, and Future

My first novel came out ten years ago, and one year later, in 2010, it was honored with the John Steptoe Award for New Talent by the Coretta Scott King Book Awards Jury. I was surprised and delighted on a number of levels when I got the call that January...

Review of D-Day: The World War II Invasion That Changed History

D-Day: The World War II Invasion That Changed Historyby Deborah HopkinsonIntermediate, Middle SchoolScholastic Focus/Scholastic    376 pp.    g8/18    978-0-545-68248-0 $16.99e-book ed.    978-0-545-68249-7 $16.99D-Day marked the beginning of the end for Hitler’s stranglehold on Europe. A massive, coordinated attack that was months in the planning, Operation Overlord saw Allied forces land on...

Happy Anniversary: Stevie

Stevie by John Steptoe (1950–1989) was published by Life magazine and then by Harper & Row in 1969. It celebrates its fiftieth anniversary in 2019.I locate the beginning of what I’ve come to call #blackboylit — literature for children and young adults that centers the experiences of boys of African...

BGHB Awards 2019

Photo by darling RichardWe have our winners! Read all about them! I'd like to thank our sisters at SLJ and Media Source for graciously sharing the podium at their Day of Dialog in New York. Next year we should do it at the end of the day so we can...

Preview July/August 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: ALA Awards

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Special Issue: ALA Awards.Original cover art by 2019 Caldecott Medal winner Sophie Blackall.Pauletta Brown Bracy’s Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Award Acceptance speech.“The Year in Words and Pictures”: Horn Book editors Elissa Gershowitz and Martha V. Parravano discuss the children’s book landscape of 2018.Meg Medina’s Newbery Medal acceptance speech.Author R. J....

Week in Review, May 27th - 31st

This week on hbook.com...Presenting the 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Award winners! Click to read the press release, watch the announcement video, and read reviews of the winning titles.Horn Book Magazine starred reviews, July/August 2019From May/June 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: The CSK Book Awards at 50: “An Interview with...

Horn Book Magazine starred reviews, July/August 2019

illustration from Pie in the Sky by Remy Lai. The following books will receive starred reviews in the July/August 2019 Horn Book Magazine. Each year our July/August issue celebrates the ALA Youth Media Awards; this time around you can look forward to original cover art by (second-time!) Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall,...

The 2019 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award winners...for families!

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Yesterday Roger announced the 2019 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award winners, and they are GREAT! My youngest, age six, will be most drawn to the picture books, some of which he's already seen, some he hasn't. Picture Book Award winner The Patchwork Bike by Maxine Beneba Clarke, illustrated by Van Thanh...

Presenting the 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Award winners

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On Wednesday, May 29, 2019, at SLJ's Day of Dialog, Horn Book editor in chief Roger Sutton announced the 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Award winners. If you missed the Facebook Live stream (or if you just want to relive the excitement!), you can watch the archived video here:THE BOSTON GLOBE–HORN...

Reviews of 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Picture Book Award Winner and Honor Books

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Picture Book Winner The Patchwork Bikeby Maxine Beneba Clarke; illus. by Van Thanh RuddPrimary    Candlewick    40 pp.9/18    978-1-5362-0031-7    $15.99A child in an unnamed “village where we live inside our mud-for-walls home” describes the diversions of daily life: “whooping and shrieking and laughing” on the sand hill, exploring the desert, and...

Reviews of the 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Fiction and Poetry Award Winner and Honor Books

Fiction and Poetry Winner The Season of Styx Maloneby Kekla MagoonIntermediate, Middle School    Lamb/Random    298 pp.    g10/18    978-1-5247-1595-3    $16.99Library ed.  978-1-5247-1596-0    $19.99e-book ed.  978-1-5247-1597-7    $10.99It’s summertime, and the living is easy. At least it was before narrator Caleb and his older brother Bobby Gene make a bad deal with their...

Reviews of the 2019 Boston Globe–Horn Book Nonfiction Award Winner and Honor Books

Nonfiction WinnerThis Promise of Change: One Girl’s Story in the Fight for School Equalityby Jo Ann Allen Boyce and Debbie LevyIntermediate, Middle School    Bloomsbury    311 pp.    g1/19    978-1-68119-852-1    $17.99e-book ed.  978-1-68119-853-8    $12.59 In 1956 in the small town of Clinton, Tennessee, twelve African American students integrated the all-white high school. Jo Ann...

An Interview with George and Bernette Ford

George and Bernette Ford are two icons of African American children’s literature. George is the winner of the first Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award, in 1974, for Ray Charles (written by Sharon Bell Mathis) and a past president of the Council on Interracial Books for Children. He and Bernette were...

Join me for BGHB @ DoD

Tomorrow morning at 8:30 a.m. sharp (Eastern Daylight Time), you can join me live at Little Sister's Day of Dialog in NYC or virtually live on The Horn Book's Facebook page to hear the winners of the 2019 Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards. Visit hbook.com/bghb19 after the announcement to see the...

Week in Review, May 20th - 24th

This week on hbook.com...Remembering Judith Kerr (1923-2019)Summer Reading 2019 featuring 5Q for Isabel Quintero and Zeke PeñaFrom May/June 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: The CSK Book Awards at 50: Lift Every Voice: "My Own Origin Story" by Javaka SteptoeMay Nonfiction Notes: life skills, activists and activism, evolution, and sustainable eating...

#summervibes

You know we love a good color palette, so we're into the (unintentional but v. appropriate!) beachy aesthetic of this year's Summer Reading list. Click here for our full list of recommendations with annotations and an interview with Isabel Quintero and Zeke Peña, then download and print the PDF —...

The Sun Is Also a Star movie review

In Nicola Yoon’s YA novel The Sun Is Also a Star (Delacorte, 2016), Natasha Kingsley and her family are a day from being deported to Jamaica after nine years living in New York City. Natasha is doing everything she can to get that decision overturned — and then she meets...

Judith Kerr (1923-2019)

Author/illustrator Judith Kerr has passed away at the age of ninety-five. Kerr's first book was the picture-book classic The Tiger Who Came to Tea. She is also the creator of a long-running series about Mog, the Forgetful Cat; and more recently Mister Cleghorn's Seal, The Crocodile Under the Bed, One...

Jewish American Heritage Month 2019

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May is Jewish American Heritage Month! The Boston Public Library has a good list of books to get you started exploring the (varied) Jewish experience in the U.S. Check out The Knish War on Rivington Street for a glimpse into the early-twentieth-century Lower East Side (and two knish recipes); or...

Books mentioned in the May 2019 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book

Life skillsAlexander, Kwame  The Playbook: 52 Rules to Aim, Shoot, and Score in This Game Called LifePhotographs by Thai NeaveGr. 4–6, middle school     172 pp.     Houghton     2017Trade ISBN 978-0-544-57097-9Ebook ISBN 978-1-328-69892-6Groban, Betsy, Editor  Totally Middle School: Tales of Friends, Family, and Fitting InGr. 4–6, middle school     181 pp.     Delacorte     2018Trade...

One of the choices

A couple of years ago, I had an idea for a blog post: a collection pictures I’d taken of my kids over time, having fallen asleep on books or with books next to them, asleep, in their beds. Gripping, right? Well, that post hasn’t come to pass...you’re welcome.Elissa’s post about...

Lift Every Voice: My Own Origin Story

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Growing up, I always loved magic. It was exciting, because I was a curious kid who devoted a good deal of brainpower to figuring out the whys of the world. This love of magic eventually manifested in a love of science — and with it science fiction — which permeated...

Spring Picture Books on the Radar

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Why, hello there! We are running our fingers through a few months’ worth of cyber-dust here at the Calling Caldecott blog, given that our last post was in January.Have you been reading picture books in 2019? You can trust that we have, and we thought it would be a good...

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, "a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States." Here are some links, resources, and articles by and about Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans to help acknowledge, celebrate, and amplify the voices of children's book creators of Asian and Pacific...

Happy anniversary, CSK!

As you know (and if you don't, you must be new here 😉), the Coretta Scott King Book Awards celebrate their 50th anniversary this year, and the Horn Book's annual special issue is themed around that anniversary. We are honored to have a roster of more than thirty African American...

Game of Thrones read-alikes

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Welp, I dunno about you, but I was Not Happy with the most recent episode of Game of Thrones. And given that it was the penultimate episode — ever — I'm getting pretty nervous about the finale on Sunday.Whether you're sticking out the season and looking for something to help...

R.I.P., Grumpy Cat

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We are sad to hear of the passing of kitty superstar Tardar Sauce, better known as Grumpy Cat. Her perpetually "grumpy" expression (the result of her unique genetics) has brought smiles to so many and reportedly belied a sweet personality. We'll miss you, Grumpy Cat.In her honor, here are some...

Lift Every Voice: Words and Music

Because I was running away from anything that required being in the public eye, I am sure that any early motivation to be a writer was deeply buried in my subconscious and lay there, unrecognized, for many years. Writing this article has sent me back to pull those memories together...

Week in Review, May 13th - May 17th

This week on hbook.com...Summer Reading 2019 featuring 5Q for Isabel Quintero and Zeke PeñaFrom May/June 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: The CSK Book Awards at 50: "Walking My Own Path" by Renée Watson "The Greatest Review I’ll Ever Get" by Christopher Paul Curtis "Words and Music" by Eloise GreenfieldReviews of...

Horn Book Summer Reading

We've pulled together our annual recommendations for summer reading. As ever, we present books we hope will spur purely recreational reading, which to my mind is the kind of reading most worth doing. I hope you find something your charges will like.     For myself, I'm deciding between a Graham Greene tear...

Field Notes: A Family Affair: Connecting Community to Books

On a rainy day in July 2017, a group of teachers, librarians, and community activists gathered at Frugal Bookstore, Boston’s only Black-owned bookstore, to participate in a discussion of Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give (which would go on to be named a 2018 Coretta Scott King Author Award Honor...

2019 Summer Reading Recommendations

What could be better than icy-cold raspados on a hot summer day? Isabel Quintero and Zeke Peña’s new picture book My Papi Has a Motorcycle has had us dreaming of shave ice since our Five Questions Summer Reading interview revealed their favorite flavors (limon for Zeke; for Isabel: “Strawberry and...

Summer Reading 2019: Five Questions for Isabel Quintero and Zeke Peña

Author Isabel Quintero and illustrator Zeke Peña previously collaborated on 2018 Boston Globe–Horn Book Nonfiction Award–winning graphic novel Photographic: The Life of Graciela Iturbide (Getty, 12 years and up). Now, in the summer-perfect picture book My Papi Has a Motorcycle (Kokila/Penguin, 5–8 years; concurrently published in Spanish as Mi papi...

Lift Every Voice: Walking My Own Path

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Courtesy NCAAP.I was used to getting red-ink marks in the margins of my school essays until I met my high school English teacher, Linda Christensen. For our final projects, Ms. Christensen would write two-page letters with praise and feedback about revisions. I had never had a teacher be so thoughtful...

Lift Every Voice: The Greatest Review I'll Ever Get

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Memory is a very inexact and unreliable process, and it’s tricky to try to point to one event in our past and say it was somehow life-changing. That said, if the question is: what set me on the road to becoming an author? I have a memory that is as...

"Why is everything so Spanish in here?"

Anika Aldamuy Denise...to celebrate Día, children! El día de los niños / El día de los libros is a nationwide celebration that “emphasizes the importance of literacy for children of all linguistic and cultural backgrounds.” For the second year in a row, I visited the Connolly Branch of the Boston Public...

Week in Review, May 6th - 10th

This week on hbook.com...From May/June 2019 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: The CSK Book Awards at 50: “Let Our Rejoicing Rise” by Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop Lift Every Voice: "From One Book to Many" by Rita Williams-Garcia Lift Every Voice: "A Matter of Choice" by Shadra Strickland CSK by the...

Mother's Day 2019

Happy Mother’s Day this Sunday, May 12, to those celebrating, especially our own mothers and our mom friends! Here are a few recommended books, articles, and blog posts featuring moms and Mother’s Day; find plenty more about mothers (and dads, and grandparents, and other kinds of loving caregivers) over at...

Readers, assemble!

It’s hard to miss the excitement (and spoilers — eek!) about Marvel’s Avengers: Endgame, released in theaters on April 26th. This latest film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe concludes what the company refers to as Phase 3 of the Infinity Saga and wraps up many favorite story lines from the...
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