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The CCBC’s Diversity Statistics: Spotlight on LGBTQ+ Stories

This is the third column in a series examining statistics gathered by the newly expanded database of the Cooperative Children’s Book Center (a research library of the University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Education). Previous columns (interviews with CCBC Director Kathleen T. Horning) can be found in the July/August 2017 and March/April 2018 issues. In 2017, […]

From The Guide: We Need Middle-Grade LGBTQ+ Books

Publishers take note. According to Madeline Tyner’s article “The CCBC’s Diversity Statistics: Spotlight on LGBTQ+ Stories”: “We received very little LGBTQ+ fiction for middle-grade readers [in 2017]…The lack of this literature is unfortunate, as children in upper elementary and middle school are often beginning to question their sexual orientations or gender identities.” The following books, […]

Books mentioned in the November 2018 issue of Notes from the Horn Book

Five questions for Traci Sorell and Frané Lessac We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga by Traci Sorell, illus. by Frané Lessac, Charlesbridge, 5–8 years. Noticing nature’s cycles They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki, Abrams, 5–8 years. Look at the Weather by Britta Teckentrup, trans. by Shelley Tanaka, 5–8 years. Quiet by Tomie dePaola, Greenwillow, 3–7 years. Winter […]

Foreseeable futures

Speculative fiction can provide an effective vehicle for authors to comment on and critique the state of our own world. The following new YA novels examine timely social issues in new settings, whether far-flung galaxies or uncomfortably close-to-home dystopian societies. (And by the way, did you know The Hunger Games just celebrated its tenth publication […]

Historical heroes and heroines

These novels for intermediate and middle-school readers show landmark moments in history through the eyes of perceptive preteens. Young Zora Neale Hurston and her friend Carrie are pulled into another mystery involving their tight-knit African American community in Zora and Me: The Cursed Ground. The main narrative, set in 1903, alternates with that of a […]

Noticing nature’s cycles

These picture books invite readers to reflect upon the cycles of our environment (i.e., weather patterns, seasons) and to pay close attention to marvels of the natural world. In They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki, a girl considers the wondrousness of the world around her, prompted by the colors she encounters throughout her day. The […]

Veterans Day 2018 reading

Today, Veterans Day, is a good day to share books about veterans, their experiences and sacrifices, and their supportive families and communities on the homefront. These titles, both fiction and nonfiction for a range of reader ages, were recommended by The Horn Book Magazine and The Horn Book Guide at the time of their publication; […]

Plagues and medical breakthroughs

Davis, Kenneth C.  More Deadly Than War: The Hidden History of the Spanish Flu and the First World War Middle school, high school    291 pp.    Holt Despite the overwhelming number of people killed by the great Spanish flu pandemic of 1918, it virtually disappeared from our national consciousness, not to mention our history books. Then, […]

Promoting tolerance

Bakshi, Kelly  Roots of Racism Middle school, high school    112 pp.    ABDO/Essential Blakemore, M. T.  White Privilege Middle school, high school    112 pp.    ABDO/Essential Burling, Alexis  Race in the Criminal Justice System Middle school, high school    112 pp.    ABDO/Essential Eboch, M. M.  Race and Economics Middle school, high school    112 pp.    ABDO/Essential Edwards, Sue Bradford  […]

Empowering girls and women

Conkling, Winifred  Votes for Women!: American Suffragists and the Battle for the Ballot Middle school, high school    310 pp.    Algonquin This fascinating chronological account of the bumpy road to women’s suffrage in the U.S. begins with the 1848 Women’s Rights Convention and culminates with ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment. Over half the book focuses on […]