Children’s Literature

Book Trailer Thursday: Home

Carson Ellis’ picture-book debut, Home (Candlewick), showcases many types of homes for all kinds of creatures. In her starred review, Ilene Cooper calls out Ellis’ fanciful details that will keep kiddos returning for second and third peeks at pages. This author-interview style trailer features Ellis’ charming home, workspace, and shelves of books, all of which […]

What’s with the Underwear in Picture Books?

What’s with the Underwear in Picture Books?

Lynn: So what’s with the underwear in picture books recently? Last year saw the publication of Veggies with Wedgies (2014), by Todd H. Doodler, and this year brings even more. Duh—why am I even ASKING that question? Underwear makes kids giggle, that’s why. The good news is that we have not one, but two, really fun picture […]

Happy Birthday, Harry Houdini!

Happy Birthday, Harry Houdini!

Cindy: Today, March 24th, is the anniversary of Harry Houdini’s birth. Yesterday, we blogged about a new book for young magicians, and today we feature Brian Selznick’s magical art in his reissued book, The Houdini Box (originally 1991). My sixth grade students are crazy about The Invention of Hugo Cabret and Wonderstruck and keep asking me for […]

Heather STILL Has Two Mommies

Heather STILL Has Two Mommies

Candlewick’s publication this month of a 25th anniversary edition of Leslea Newman’s picture book Heather Has Two Mommies is evidence that this modern classic of LGBTQ literature—the first children’s book to feature the child of two lesbian parents—is a survivor despite the fact that, from its first publication, the book has been one of the […]

Joshua Jay’s Big Magic for Little Hands

Joshua Jay’s Big Magic for Little Hands

Cindy: Magic books are popular in one of my middle schools because we have a magician on staff! Mr. Huber runs a magic club during his lunch break and his enthusiasm is contagious. When I saw Joshua Jay’s new book Big Magic for Little Hands (Workman, 2015) I was eager to get my librarian hands […]

Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head: Rainy Day Books

Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head: Rainy Day Books

Lynn: Here is a treasure for every classroom studying the water cycle! Raindrops Roll (2015), by April Pulley Sayre, is a visual gem that provides a close-up look at the action of raindrops. The book opens by setting the stage: “Rain is coming. You can feel it in the air.” Each page has a gorgeous photograph, […]

Book Trailer Thursday: Sidewalk Flowers

This sweet trailer for Sidewalk Flowers, by JonArno Lawson and illustrated by Sydney Smith, takes advantage of the medium to do and show what the book can’t; birds chirp and fly and dust motes float through the air. Still and all, though, don’t expect any words. We just can’t get enough of Sidewalk Flowers!

A Big-Top 10: High-Flying Circus Books for Kids

A Big-Top 10: High-Flying Circus Books for Kids

I’m not exactly sure when my fascination with the circus started. I never went as a child; I was more concerned with getting on Broadway than running away with Ringling. Still, over the past several years I’ve been drawn to the circus aesthetic—its daring, inherent otherness. I can pore over vintage posters, sideshow banners, and cabinet […]

Basketball Book Madness in March

Basketball Book Madness in March

Cindy: It’s March. That means a basketball post (or three) from Bookends. Faithful readers will know that Lynn and I cheer on our Big Ten teams this time of year … she the Purdue Boilermakers, and me the Indiana Hoosiers. My team can shoot threes and drive inside but we’ve sure had our ups and […]

Sidewalk Flowers Is a Wordless Picture Book Worth Picking

Sidewalk Flowers Is a Wordless Picture Book Worth Picking

Cindy: While much of the country waits for huge piles of snow to melt—let alone spring flowers to bloom—readers can brighten their winter world with Sidewalk Flowers, by JonArno Lawson and Sydney Smith (2015). Let’s start with the fact that this wordless book is “written” by Canadian poet Lawson. Yeah, I know, right? We’ll come […]