Book Reviews

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Review of Black Girl You Are Atlas

Black Girl You Are Atlas by Renée Watson; illus. by Ekua HolmesMiddle School, High School    Kokila/Penguin    96 pp.2/24    9780593461709    $18.99e-book ed.  9780593461716    $10.99This poetry collection masterfully encapsulates Watson’s experience of Black girlhood and womanhood. Through an array of poetic styles, she weaves together her personal reflections, celebrating the multifaceted nature...

Review of Climbing the Volcano: A Journey in Haiku

Climbing the Volcano: A Journey in Haiku by Curtis Manley; illus. by Jennifer K. MannPrimary    Porter/Holiday    40 pp.1/24    9780823451661    $18.99e-book ed.  9780823457458    $11.99Manley offers a child’s point of view of a day-long hike up a mountain (identified in the back matter as the South Sister in Oregon’s Cascade Mountain Range)....

Review of What You Need to Be Warm

What You Need to Be Warm by Neil Gaiman; illus. by various artists Primary, Intermediate    Quill Tree/HarperCollins    32 pp. 10/23    9780063358089    $18.99 e-book ed.  9780063358102    $12.99 Gaiman, who serves as a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN Refugee Agency, used social media to ask people about their memories of being warm,...

Review of Kin: Rooted in Hope

Kin: Rooted in Hope by Carole Boston Weatherford; illus. by Jeffery Boston WeatherfordIntermediate, Middle School    Atheneum    208 pp.9/23    9781665913621    $18.99e-book ed.  9781665913645    $10.99From a single photograph and sparse information to a fully realized lineage of excellence, an African American author, with dramatic illustrations by her son, traces their family’s roots....

Review of Welcome to the Wonder House

Welcome to the Wonder House by Rebecca Kai Dotlich and Georgia Heard; illus. by Deborah FreedmanPrimary, Intermediate    Wordsong/Astra    40 pp.7/23    9781635927627    $18.99e-book ed.  9781635928631    $11.99Twenty-nine poems in a lovely mix of forms and styles populate this book, presented as a “house” with twelve double-page-spread “rooms.” Each room has a slightly...

Review of My Head Has a Bellyache: And More Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups

My Head Has a Bellyache: And More Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups by Chris Harris; illus. by Andrea Tsurumi Primary, Intermediate    Little, Brown    192 pp. 7/23    9780316592598    $19.99 e-book ed.  9780316566179    $9.99 “Mint-chip ice cream (so fantastic!), / ­Key-lime taffy (so elastic!), / Bags of all-green jelly beans…...

Review of How to Write a Poem

How to Write a Poem by Kwame Alexander and Deanna Nikaido; illus. by Melissa Sweet Primary    Quill Tree/HarperCollins    32 pp. 4/23    9780063060906    $18.99 e-book ed.  9780063309937    $10.99 Alexander and Nikaido offer a single poem as this lyrical picture book’s text, inviting young readers (and listeners) to “dive deep into the...

Review of Animals in Pants

Animals in Pants by Suzy Levinson; illus. by Kristen Howdeshell and Kevin Howdeshell Primary    Cameron/Abrams    32 pp. 4/23    9781951836627    $17.99 e-book ed.  9781647009502    $15.54 A red-haired child introduces the picture book’s topic forcefully with a large word balloon before the title page: “What? YOU’VE NEVER SEEN ANIMALS IN PANTS?!?” Twenty-three...

Review of The Dream Train: Poems for Bedtime

The Dream Train: Poems for Bedtime by Sean Taylor; illus. by Anuska AllepuzPreschool    Candlewick    88 pp.3/23    9781536228342    $19.99British poet Taylor sends little ones to bed with thirty imaginative poems in three thematic sets: “Night Arrives,” “Shut-Your-Eyes Time,” and “Dream Wheels Turning.” With a mix of rhyming and free-verse poetry, along...
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