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Elissa Gershowitz

About Elissa Gershowitz

Elissa Gershowitz is executive editor of The Horn Book, Inc. She is a current member of the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee.

Review of The Itchy Book

The Itchy Book [Elephant & Piggie Like Reading!] by LeUyen Pham; illus. by the author; with additional illustrations by Mo Willems Primary    Hyperion    58 pp.    g 5/18    978-1-368-00564-7    $9.99 Pham’s early reader touches on herd-mentality and nonconformity in a make-believe prehistoric setting. A turtle snoozes in front of a rock etched with the words “Dinosaurs […]

Illustrators — finally!

“Illustrators — finally! Authors get all the credit for everything!” said my eight-year-old when I told him I was going to be spending time with a few. On Friday, July 27, I was invited to Shady Hill School in Cambridge, MA, by the incomparable Kim Parker [NB: every parent, teacher, librarian, administrator, person who cares […]

Uncommon graphic novels for beginners

Difficult to classify — and entertaining to read. Here are four new graphic novels for beginning readers and middle graders. See also “Five Questions for Sergio Ruzzier” about his Fox + Chick series (in this issue), “New for New Readers: An Easy Reader Renaissance,” and Brian Selznick and David Serlin’s Talks with Roger interview about […]

Summer staycations

These picture books show that summer vacations don’t have to be elaborate going-away affairs — with a little imagination and some good friends, they can be a state of mind. In Deborah Underwood’s Monster & Mouse Go Camping, outdoor enthusiast Mouse convinces her anxious pal Monster to go camping with her: “Camping is great!” Mouse’s […]

From Pencil to Page: Sketches and Illustrations by Grace Lin

The weekend before last, my family and I attended the family-friendly opening reception of Grace Lin’s exhibit “From Pencil to Page: Sketches and Illustrations” at the Pao Arts Center, part of the Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center. Grace’s Ling & Ting early readers are favorites in my house, as is Starry River of the Sky, which […]

ALA 2018: So many choices, so little time, wear comfy shoes

ALA is like a Choose Your Own Adventure, with myriad paths to follow. I missed out on a lot (Michelle Obama and Carla Hayden, Trombone Shorty, the sold-out CSK Breakfast — see Martha’s post), but everything I did see left me invigorated and in awe. Saturday morning began with the “Native YA Today: Contemporary Indigenous […]

Review of Niblet & Ralph

Niblet & Ralph by Zachariah OHora; illus. by the author Primary    Dial    40 pp.    g 6/18    978-0-7352-2791-0    $17.99 Gemma lives with her dad and her cat, Ralph, in an apartment across the hall from Dilla, his mom, and Dilla’s cat, Niblet. Though Gemma and Dilla have not yet met, Ralph and Niblet are fast friends, […]

Loving Day 2018

Tuesday, June 12, marked the fifty-first anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, the landmark civil rights case that struck down anti-miscegenation laws and legalized interracial marriage. Last weekend the Central Flea outdoor open market in Cambridge, MA, shared its space with the Loving Day Cambridge Block Party. Lots and lots of people were involved in organizing the […]

Summer lessons

The following new summery picture books for preschoolers and up touch on themes of overcoming fears, making new friends, defining home, and persevering, all in light-and-breezy summertime-friendly ways. For more recommended summertime reads, check out our Summer Reading list. See also our new Five Questions interviews with Julián Is a Mermaid author/illustrator Jessica Love and […]

Local Women Authors in Conversation at the Cambridge Public Library

Last week the Cambridge (MA) Public Library hosted a panel of Local Women Authors in Conversation. Moderated by Professor Susan Tomlinson of the University of Massachusetts, Boston, and editor of the scholarly journal Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers, the panelists were middle-grade writer Susan Tan (author of the Cilla Lee-Jenkins books and Horn Book […]