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Election Day 2018

Harris, Duchess  Freedom of Religion Middle school, high school    112 pp.    ABDO/Essential Harris, Duchess, with Kari A. Cornell  Freedom of the Press Middle school, high school    112 pp.    ABDO/Essential Harris, Duchess  Governmental Checks and Balances Middle school, high school    112 pp.    ABDO/Essential Harris, Duchess, with Rebecca Morris  The Right to Bear Arms Middle school, high […]

Review of Thomas Paine and the Dangerous Word

Thomas Paine and the Dangerous Word by Sarah Jane Marsh; illus. by Edwin Fotheringham Primary, Intermediate    Disney-Hyperion    80 pp.    g 5/18    978-1-4847-8144-9    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-368-02251-4    $10.99 Corset maker. Sailor. Tax collector. Husband. Thomas Paine fails at all these pursuits. But what he can do is write and persuade, and when in 1774 he immigrates […]

Review of Boots on the Ground: America’s War in Vietnam

Boots on the Ground: America’s War in Vietnam by Elizabeth Partridge Middle School, High School    Viking    212 pp.    g 4/18    978-0-670-78506-3    $22.99 e-book ed.  978-0-425-29178-8    $11.99 The Vietnam War was a time of virulent political divisiveness, profound cultural upheaval, and horrific events. It can be challenging to understand, especially for young people born decades afterward, […]

Of scientists and samurai

These nonfiction audiobooks, recommended for middle-school listeners and up, highlight a variety of memorable moments and important figures throughout human history. Samurai Rising: The Epic Life of Minamoto Yoshitsune is the bloody, heroic saga of an iconic twelfth-century samurai. Author Pamela S. Turner combines meticulous historical detail with conversational modernity and wry asides. Her narrative […]

Five questions for Anne Quirk

Anne Quirk’s The Good Fight: The Feuds of the Founding Fathers (And How They Shaped the Nation) (Knopf, 10–14 years) highlights four sets of venerable opponents whose disputes helped set America’s path during its formative years. And just like its author — who was former publisher of The Horn Book — the book is smart, […]

Review of The Good Fight: The Feuds of the Founding Fathers (and How They Shaped the Nation)

The Good Fight: The Feuds of the Founding Fathers (and How They Shaped the Nation) by Anne Quirk; illus. by Elizabeth Baddeley Intermediate    Knopf    118 pp.    g 8/17    978-1-5247-0035-5    $16.99 Library ed.  978-1-5247-0036-2    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5247-0119-2    $10.99 “It hurts to be on the wrong side of history. Winners, like George Washington, have great cities […]

Review of Long May She Wave: The True Story of Caroline Pickersgill and Her Star-Spangled Creation

Long May She Wave: The True Story of Caroline Pickersgill and Her Star-Spangled Creation by Kristen Fulton; illus. by Holly Berry Primary    McElderry    40 pp. 5/17    978-1-4814-6096-5    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-6097-2    $10.99 Caroline Pickersgill grew up around industrious women: her widowed mother ran a successful flag-making business from their Baltimore […]

American Revolution, NOT rich white men

Ms. Katie’s third-grade class sent home a note letting families know about their Revolutionary War project, a collection of essays titled History’s Unknown Heroes: Uncovering Massachusetts’s Revolutionary Heroes: In third grade, we were studying the American Revolution, and we noticed there were a lot of important people whose stories are not told that much. The […]

U.S. politics

Carson, Mary Kay  Why Couldn’t Susan B. Anthony Vote?: And Other Questions About Women’s Suffrage Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Sterling Richmond, Benjamin  What Are the Three Branches of Government?: And Other Questions About the U.S. Constitution Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Sterling Good Question! series. A question-and-answer format provides information relevant to each book’s American government […]

Ripped Apart: A Civil War Mystery app review

As Ripped Apart: A Civil War Mystery (Smithsonian, 2015; iOS only) opens, it’s your first day as an intern at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. After curator Isabella Wagner introduces you to the museum and the task at hand, you head down to the creepy basement — alone — to get to work. […]