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From the editor — June 2013

Dan Brown’s Inferno is not going to last me much longer, so I’m glad Katie Bircher and Elissa Gershowitz have put together the Horn Book’s annual Summer Reading Recommendations. There are choices for all tastes and ages here (and adults shouldn’t miss Eleanor & Park, a swoony and literate YA romance that just won the […]

Books mentioned in the June 2013 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Ann M. Martin Better to Wish [Family Tree] by Ann M. Martin, Scholastic, 10–14 years. Middle-grade family stories The Thing About Luck by Cynthia Kadohata; illus. by Julia Kuo, Atheneum, 10–14 years. The Romeo and Juliet Code and Romeo Blue by Phoebe Stone, Levine/Scholastic, 10–14 years. One Crazy Summer and P.S. Be […]

Five questions for Ann M. Martin

Ann Martin fans, rejoice: she’s back, with an addictive new middle-grade series. Readers will find familiar hallmarks of Martin’s earlier work: the intimacy with which readers get to know the characters; the amount of emotion conveyed through small incidents. But in other ways, this series is quite different. Here’s what the author had to say […]

Middle-grade family stories

The thing about family is that it can be unpredictable. These four new books present families from different eras in all their unique and messy complexities. In Cynthia Kadohata’s funny but poignant The Thing About Luck, twelve-year-old narrator Summer lives with her brother, parents, and grandparents in contemporary Kansas. Her parents, who drive combines for […]

New dystopian worlds to explore

What makes for better summer reading than a page-turning thriller? Four recent titles introduce young adult readers to brand-new dystopian societies and their courageous teen rebels. In Rick Yancey’s The 5th Wave, aliens have invaded Earth and killed seven billion humans in waves of systematic attacks. Sixteen-year-old survivor Cassie prepares herself for the fifth wave, […]

World folklore and fairy tales

From the depths of the jungles to Middle Eastern marketplaces to magical fairy forests, the following books span diverse settings. The stories illustrate just how effectively narrative can represent and transmit different cultures’ traditions, heritage, mythos, and history. In Odile Weulersse’s Nasreddine, Mustafa and his son Nasreddine set out for the market four times, facing […]

Just imagine

Pretend play can be a quiet and contemplative activity for one or a boisterous group effort. Four new picture books successfully capture the fluid boundary between real and imaginary in the minds of young children. Pint-sized Niño, fearless luchador, Popsicle enthusiast, and reluctantly attentive big brother, dons his red mask and blue-banded tighty-whities, ready to […]