Subscribe to The Horn Book

Review of People Don’t Bite People

People Don’t Bite People by Lisa Wheeler; illus. by Molly Idle Preschool    Atheneum    40 pp. 4/18    978-1-4814-9082-5    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-9083-2    $10.99 In subversively lilting rhymed verse, Wheeler enumerates the reasons “people don’t bite people” and suggests alternatives: “It’s good to bite a biscuit. / It’s good to bite a plum. / It’s BAD to […]

Spring 2018 Publishers’ Previews: Five Questions for Brian Lies

This interview originally appeared in the March/April 2018 Horn Book Magazine as part of the Publishers’ Previews, an advertising supplement that allows participating publishers a chance to each highlight a book from its current list. They choose the books; we ask the questions. Sponsored by We think that The Rough Patch is going to be […]

The story on the wall

Seeing the CSK exhibit at the NCCIL is making me remember again the vogue for illustration as fine art we had in the 1980s:  from a baby boom arose lots of picture books, lots of children’s bookstores, and (he gestures vaguely towards) developments in five-color printing that encouraged big, handsome pictures in big, handsome books. And […]

Texas Time

What a wonderful time Richard and I had in Abilene! We were at the National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature (still jeez to the name, but I did learn its acronym is pronounced nickel and not ‘encil) to see a wonderful show, and quite a haul of original art from Coretta Scott King Award winners […]

Review of Hello Lighthouse

Hello Lighthouse by Sophie Blackall; illus. by the author Primary    Little, Brown    48 pp.    g 4/18    978-0-316-36238-2    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-316-36237-5    $9.99 Blackall’s (Finding Winnie, rev. 9/15) picture book opens as a new keeper arrives to take up his solitary duties at a lighthouse “on the highest rock of a tiny island at the edge […]

Western stars light up the sky

Later this week Richard and I are going west to Abilene to see the exhibition of Coretta Scott King Award winners at the National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature (also known as NCCIL, thank heavens). There will be a bash to which we are grateful to be invited, and the exhibit of some one hundred original […]

Review of A Most Unusual Day

A Most Unusual Day by Sydra Mallery; 
illus. by E. B. Goodale Primary    Greenwillow    32 pp.    g 4/18    978-0-06-236430-2    $17.99 Morning arrives, and Caroline, who is “usually” up with the birds, can’t get herself out of bed. There is something coming later in the day, and the anticipation is obviously affecting her: “Caroline was usually […]

Review of Pup and Bear

Pup and Bear by Kate Banks; illus. by Naoko Stoop Preschool, Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp. 10/17    978-0-399-55409-4    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-399-55410-0    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-399-55411-7    $10.99 A comforting jacket illustration of a wolf pup safely nestled within a large polar bear’s protective embrace signals that this story focuses on a loving, if unconventional, […]

Review of The Little Red Fort

The Little Red Fort by Brenda Maier; 
illus. by Sonia Sánchez Primary    Scholastic    40 pp.    g 3/18    978-0-545-85919-6    $17.99 Young Ruby (whose “mind was always full of ideas”) decides to build a fort in her yard. She asks her brothers for help, but in true “Little Red Hen” fashion, no one agrees: “Oscar Lee pretended […]

Patterns

Late winter in New England means a kind of limbo between seasons. You never know what it will be like out — snow or mud or something in between. So when I was preparing for a visit to my twin daughters’ classroom to teach a winter science lesson, I had to be flexible. The class […]