Brian E. Wilson

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Review of All That Grows

All That Grows by Jack Wong; illus. by the authorPrimary    Groundwood    32 pp.3/24    9781773068121    $19.99e-book ed.  9781773068138    $16.99Nature walks and gardening result in an introspective child thinking small (and big) thoughts about the natural world in this quiet, poetic account, effectively told in the first person. The narrator’s sister, experienced...

Review of Copydog

Copydog by Zachariah OHora; illus. by the authorPreschool, Primary    Abrams    40 pp.11/23    9781419765018    $18.99e-book ed.  9781647008420    $15.54OHora (Sonny Says “Mine!”, rev. 9/21; Fuzzy, Inside & Out) employs his signature bold outlines and vibrant acrylic colors in this rollicking story of shaggy gray dog-child Elise and the adoring little sister, Rosemont,...

Once upon a Book

For the past several years, I have run a mock Caldecott program for first to eighth graders at my public library. For each contending book, I lead the children through an “art walk” during which we talk about the images and how they tell the story. This leads to some...

Emile and the Field

[Calling Caldecott posts this season will begin with the Horn Book Magazine review of the featured book, followed by the post's author's critique.]   Emile and the Field by Kevin Young; illus. by Chioma Ebinama Preschool    Make Me a World/Random    40 pp.    g 3/22    978-1-9848-5042-3    $17.99 Library ed.  978-1-9848-5043-0    $20.99 e-book...

Mel Fell

Author-illustrator Corey R. Tabor’s exuberant Mel Fell starts with a dramatic announcement from a baby kingfisher named Mel: today, with her mama away, is the day she will learn how to fly. Hiding in a tree hole, her siblings, Pim and Pip, watch with great concern as Mel marches to the end...

Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

In her afterword for Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks, artist Cozbi A. Cabrera talks about how she loved researching the life of legendary poet Gwendolyn Brooks. Cabrera thanks the staff at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's Rare Book and Manuscript Library for allowing her to hold...

Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera

According to National Geographic, the average size of a worker honeybee is between 0.4 to 0.6 inches. And yet this little critter serves a mighty role in the food chain. Some humans may view bees as a pest, but we depend on honeybee pollination for many of the foods we...


In a December 2018 interview at the site Art of the Picture Book, Oge Mora mentions that a quote from her favorite painter Jacob Lawrence — "when the subject is complex, simplicity is the only way to treat it" — inspires her. She praises Lawrence's playful style, as well as the way he created...

Bear Came Along

In her illustrator's note for the rollicking Bear Came Along, LeUyen Pham writes, "This book is truly special to me. It was one of those rare stories that, the moment I read it, I knew exactly how it would look." Her vibrant illustrations, done in watercolor, ink, and gouache, reflect...

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