Children’s Literature

A Pair of Historical Mysteries Evokes the Jim Crow South

A Pair of Historical Mysteries Evokes the Jim Crow South

Cindy: A pair of recent Southern historical mysteries raises the issue of racism. I read the first, Bobby Lee Claremont and the Criminal Element (2018) by Jeannie Mobley, on a recent destination wedding trip to New Orleans. I like coordinating book settings with my travel, and I was on deadline for Booklist’s #MysteryMonth, so this novel […]

Solving a Teacher’s Mystery Stumper

Solving a Teacher’s Mystery Stumper

Cindy: I felt like Nate the Great or Encyclopedia Brown earlier this school year, when an eighth-grade science teacher surprised me by asking for help with this reader’s advisory mystery stumper: “So, we’re studying Newton’s laws of motion, and I remember an Encyclopedia Brown mystery case story about someone riding in the back of the truck and when the […]

Don’t Bite Your Classmates (or Worse)

Don’t Bite Your Classmates (or Worse)

Lynn: Small children have so many things to learn, and dealing with frustration and anger is one of them. As parents and teachers know to their sorrow, some toddlers resort to chomping the object of their ire. It’s a tough problem, and when I read a book recently that addressed biting, I told Cindy I […]

WORLD MAKE WAY, a Poetry Collection for the Eye and Ear

WORLD MAKE WAY, a Poetry Collection for the Eye and Ear

Lynn: Renowned editor Lee Bennett Hopkins opens World Make Way: New Poems Inspired by Art from the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2018) with this important thought from Leonardo da Vinci: “Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.” This book, a glorious new celebration of art […]

Rain, Rain, Come Again! Two Picture Books Celebrating the Pleasures of a Good Soaking

Rain, Rain, Come Again! Two Picture Books Celebrating the Pleasures of a Good Soaking

Cindy: No one likes a rainy day more than a young child who gets to splash in a puddle . . . or two. We have two books for young children that celebrate the pleasures of a good soaking. Even if you’re not eager to get wet, you can read these to a young rain […]

ITCH! A Book Worth the Scratch

ITCH! A Book Worth the Scratch

Lynn: Itch! Yikes, the very word makes me want to scratch! What makes us itch and why? Here to answer questions every child has about this irritating phenomenon is Itch! Everything You Didn’t Want to Know About What Makes You Scratch (2017) by Anita Sanchez. I’ve been itching to get my hands on this fall book […]

LIBRARY ON WHEELS: A Charming History of the Bookmobile

LIBRARY ON WHEELS: A Charming History of the Bookmobile

Cindy: Does your local library have a bookmobile? If so, do you know who to thank? Mary Lemist Titcomb is credited with launching the very first bookmobile—a horse-drawn wagon—made for the Washington County Free Library in Maryland in April 1905. In  Library on Wheels: Mary Lemist Titcomb and America’s First Bookmobile (2018), Sharlee Glenn rolls out its […]

OTIS AND WILL DISCOVER THE DEEP

OTIS AND WILL DISCOVER THE DEEP

Lynn: Barb Rosenstock and Katherine Roy’s new picture book, Otis and Will Discover the Deep: the Record-Setting Dive of the Bathysphere (2018), is the fascinating story of how the groundbreaking submarine came to be. It is also a celebration of curiosity, persistence, and the unexpected places those qualities can lead. Otis Barton and William Beebe, […]

Maria Sibylla Merian: Woman of Science, Art, and Courage

Maria Sibylla Merian: Woman of Science, Art, and Courage

Lynn: In the author’s note of her first biography, Joyce Sidman recalls her first encounter with Maria Merian’s work in the Minneapolis Museum of Art when she saw prints of her intricate depictions of natural life.  Like most of us, Sidman knew little about Merian. “In many ways, Maria was an enigma. She rarely wrote […]

Caldecott Medalist Lights Up New Picture Book

Caldecott Medalist Lights Up New Picture Book

Lynn: “Like all sensible people, I have always loved lighthouses,” Sophie Blackall explains in the author’s note of Hello Lighthouse (2018). I agree completely! Whose imagination isn’t captured by the sight of the lighthouses that stand tall along the coasts of our oceans and Great Lakes? Blackall relates her discovery at a flea market of an old […]