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Review of Betty Before X audiobook

Betty Before X by Ilyasah Shabazz with Renée Watson; read by Ilyasah Shabazz Intermediate, Middle School    Macmillan Young Listeners    Rev. 3/18 4 CDs    4.5 hrs.    978-1-4272-9368-8    $29.99 Long before she was the wife of Malcolm X, Betty Shabazz was a girl growing up in 1940s Detroit within a solid churchgoing community engaged in the fight […]

Review of As You Wish audiobook

As You Wish by Chelsea Sedoti; read by Brian Hutchison High School    Recorded Books    Rev. 1/18 8 CDs    9.75 hrs.    978-1-5019-7224-9    $24.49 In a Nevada desert town where everyone gets a wish on his or her eighteenth birthday (and it comes true), seventeen-year-old Eldon doesn’t know what to choose. What’s more, he’s convinced that most […]

Review of Waylon!: Even More Awesome audiobook

Waylon!: Even More Awesome by Sara Pennypacker; read by Christopher Gebauer Intermediate    Recorded Books    Rev. 11/17 3 CDs    2.5 hrs.    978-1-5019-8150-0    $10.45 Fourth grader Waylon and his classmate Baxter (“the closest thing to a juvenile delinquent [Waylon] had ever encountered”) are dog lovers with a problem: if they don’t find a permanent home for Dumpster […]

Review of The Journey of Little Charlie audiobook

The Journey of Little Charlie by Christopher Paul Curtis; read by Michael Crouch Intermediate, Middle School    Listening Library Rev. 3/18    5 CDs    5.23 hrs.    978-0-8041-6802-1    $45.00 Twelve-year-old narrator “Little Charlie” Bobo is already the size of a man, and when his South Carolina sharecropper father dies in a freak accident, the sheriff suspects Charlie. Charlie […]

Gendered reading and audiobooks

My daughter became a bookworm this year, reading middle grade novels by Carl Hiaasen, Kate Beasley, Robert Beatty, and Erin Entrada Kelly. She read before bed, and while eating breakfast and brushing her teeth. When she finished a book, she’d pass it along to me, and we’d discuss it. I felt excited about this new […]

Review of I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter audiobook

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sánchez; read by Kyla Garcia High School    Listening Library    Rev. 3/18 8 CDs    9.7 hrs.    978-1-5247-8224-5    $60.00 When her older sister, Olga, dies, Julia discovers Olga was not the “perfect Mexican daughter” everybody thought she was. Julia, who longs to be a writer and leave […]

Review of Votes for Women: American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot audiobook

Votes for Women: American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot by Winifred Conkling; read by Christina Moore Middle School, High School    Recorded Books    Rev. 3/18 6 CDs    7.25 hrs.    978-1-5019-7193-8    $20.99 Narrator Moore has a deep, resonant alto with a no-nonsense quality that perfectly embodies the resolve of America’s first feminists. When quoting Susan […]

Jim Dale’s soporific magic

I’ve always been a big Harry Potter fan, but I never dreamed how much a part of my life Harry would become. When my first son was born, I was in labor for a week and struggling to stay calm. My mom is a psychologist and also does hypnosis (legitimate hypnosis — not making people […]

Crossing bridges, turning pages

Mothering my seven children often inspires my writing, but I’ve made it a policy to avoid writing publicly about specific struggles I have with them. Growing up is hard enough, and I worry that real openness could amount to betrayal or worse. All to say: I have a story to tell about one of my […]

Summer listening

These recent speculative fiction favorites are now available as audiobooks — just in time for summer, when teens may be seeking escapist vacation listening or entertainment on that epic road trip with friends. In Kristin Cashore’s Jane, Unlimited, recently bereaved Jane is unexpectedly invited to spend the weekend at a mysterious island mansion — and […]