Autumn Allen

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Review of The 1619 Project: Born on the Water

The 1619 Project: Born on the Water by Nikole Hannah-Jones and Renée Watson; illus. by Nikkolas Smith Primary, Intermediate    Kokila/Penguin    48 pp.    g 11/21    978-0-593-30735-9    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-593-30737-3    $11.99 The book begins with a premise many African American families know well: a child gets an assignment at school that...

Review of Never, Not Ever!

Never, Not Ever! by Beatrice Alemagna; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Harper/HarperCollins    48 pp.    g 7/21    978-0-06-307649-5    $17.99 A five-year-old bat named Pascaline refuses to go to school. On the first day, as the other young animals parade past her window, Pascaline clings to the furniture in her family’s...

Review of Carpenter's Helper

Carpenter’s Helper by Sybil Rosen; illus. by Camille Garoche Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp.    g 3/21    978-0-593-12320-1    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-593-12321-8    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-593-12322-5    $10.99 It is spring, and Renata is helping Papi renovate the bathroom. They cut a hole in the wall where the new window will...

Review of We All Play

We All Play by Julie Flett; illus. by the author Preschool    Greystone Kids    40 pp.    g 5/21    978-1-77164-607-9    $17.95 e-book ed.  978-1-77164-608-6    $17.99 In Flett’s lively and beautifully illustrated story, animals engage in all sorts of playful behaviors, on land and in the water. Each spread depicts one or two...

We Are Water Protectors

I simply cannot get enough of We Are Water Protectors. It stands out among the books published this year for its importance in our shared culture and for its elegant beauty. Before I ever saw the book, I saw an illustration from one of its pages — the image of...

Review of Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks by Suzanne Slade; illus. by Cozbi A. Cabrera Primary, Intermediate    Abrams    48 pp.    g 4/20    978-1-4197-3411-3    $17.99 Gwendolyn Brooks (1917–2000) grew up on the South Side of Chicago “with little money to spare,” but her childhood home was rich in volumes of...

Review of The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story

The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story by Tina Cho; illus. by Jess X. Snow Primary    Kokila/Penguin    48 pp.    g 8/20    978-1-9848-1486-9    $17.99 Young Korean girl Dayeon admires her diver grandmother (“You are like a treasure-hunting mermaid”) and wants to be like her. Grandma is a haenyeo, one of many...

Review of Nana Akua Goes to School

Nana Akua Goes to School by Tricia Elam Walker; illus. by April Harrison Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp.    g 6/20    978-0-525-58113-0    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-525-58114-7    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-525-58115-4    $10.99 Although her grandmother, Nana Akua, is her “favorite person in the whole universe,” young Zura is not excited about...

Review of Love from A to Z

Love from A to Z by S. K. Ali High School    Salaam/Simon    342 pp. 4/19    978-1-5344-4272-6    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5344-4274-0    $10.99 Zayneb, a Muslim American high school senior, leaves for spring break in Doha, Qatar, a week early when she is suspended for a note she wrote in class about her Islamophobic history...
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