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The Book That Changed My Life: Jo March Is Me

Thank goodness we live in a literary era when cultural and racial identities are seen as important mirrors in stories. That wasn’t true when I came of age. Maybe that’s why it feels odd to confess that Jo March in Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women was such a profound influence during my adolescence. But here’s […]

The Book That Changed My Life: My Heart’s Music

There are the moments when a single book scoops you up, holds you, rocks you, and begs you to feel your own soul’s depth. For me that book was — and still is — Maya Angelou’s autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. I was a teenager when I encountered Maya’s signature tale. I […]

The Book That Changed My Life: A Dangerous Book

My high-school classmate Lena B. told me that one of the female characters in Doctor Zhivago was based on her grandmother. I had never heard of Doctor Zhivago. “What’s the big deal?” I said. “It’s just a book.” She was appalled. Lena moved in the dissident circles closely watched by the KGB (place: USSR; time: […]

“The Book That Changed My Life” series

For the May/June 2018 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: Making a Difference (gorgeous cover at right by Yuyi Morales), we asked fifteen-plus children’s book creators to write about the book that changed their lives. The answers were heartfelt, touching, sometimes humorous, always thoughtful — and a welcome reminder about the enduring power of books and […]

Horn Book Magazine — May/June 2018: Special Issue: Making a Difference

Table of Contents Features “Making a Difference in Our Nation’s Library: 
An Interview with Dr. Carla Hayden” by Roger Sutton The first female and first African American 
Librarian of Congress talks about mirror books, youth librarianship, and nonpartisanship. “’To Be Great, Heroic or Beautiful’: The Enduring Legacy of The Brownies’ Book” by Jonda C. McNair […]

Editorial: “Get Up from the Chair!”

Welcome to our seriously special issue on the theme of “making a difference.” With a deep sense of history and purpose and interconnection (how many times is Virginia Hamilton cited?), and with some thirty contributors, from Susan Cooper (on Ursula K. Le Guin) to Dhonielle Clayton (on Hamilton’s Willie Bea) to Kevin Henkes (on the […]

Making a Difference in Our Nation’s Library: An Interview with Dr. Carla Hayden

In 2016 Dr. Carla Hayden was confirmed as the fourteenth Librarian of Congress — the first African American and the first woman to hold that position. Horn Book editor in chief Roger Sutton and Dr. Hayden go way back, to their days at the Graduate Library School at the University of Chicago. In February, Roger […]

Preview May/June 2018 Horn Book Magazine

Special Issue: Making a Difference Cover by Yuyi Morales. Carla Hayden, the first female and first African American Librarian of Congress, talks with Horn Book editor in chief Roger Sutton — her library school classmate! — about Bright April, mirror books, and nonpartisanship in the library. Jonda C. McNair and Rudine Sims Bishop examine the […]