January 20, 2017

Subscribe to SLJ

“March: Book Three” Named Winner of the 2017 Walter Award

WalterAward-300x300

We Need Diverse Books selected March: Book Three as the winner of the Walter Dean Myers Award, along with three honorees.

Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly | SLJ Review

MG-SL-Kelly-HelloUniverse

KELLY, Erin Entrada. Hello, Universe. illus. by Isabel Roxas. 320p. ­HarperCollins/Greenwillow. Mar. 2017. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780062414151.

Gr 3-7 –The universe comes together unexpectedly when a unique set of circumstances cause four tweens to cross paths. Central to the story is Virgil, an 11-year-old Filipino American whose grandmother, Lola, helps him to come out of his shell and face the world. When Virgil and his pet guinea pig, Gulliver, end up trapped in a well in the woods at […]

All Ears, All Eyes by Richard Jackson | SLJ Review

all ears all eyes

JACKSON, Richard. All Ears, All Eyes. illus. by Katherine Tillotson. 40p. Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Bks. Mar. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781481415712; ebk. $10.99. ISBN 9781481415729.

PreS-Gr 2 –A forest night setting created with watercolor and digital techniques at first connotes quiet and stillness, but from beginning to end, this story encourages readers to look closer and listen deeper to discover a symphony of sight and sound. As the day starts to fade, an owl sits practically camouflaged in a tree, […]

Junior Library Guild to Sponsor Multicultural Children’s Book Day

junior-library-guild-squarelogo-1425628261021

JLG is the honorary sponsor of the MCBD 2017 campaign, which is dedicated to raising awareness about diverse books.

ILA Report: Digital Literacy Is Hot; Access to Books and Content Is Not

TN

The International Literacy Association’s What’s Hot in Literacy report shows that what’s trendy to talk about is not always the same as what’s most important to discuss.

Princess Cora and the Crocodile by Laura Amy Schlitz | SLJ Review

CB-Schlitz-PrincessCoraandtheCrocodile

SCHLITZ, Laura Amy. Princess Cora and the Crocodile. illus. by Brian Floca. 80p. Candlewick. Mar. 2017. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780763648220.

Gr 1-4 –Little Cora is an old-fashioned princess with a decidedly contemporary problem: her well-meaning parents have overscheduled her with improving experiences, and she just wants a day off. Failing at her less than assertive attempts to convince the adults of her castle to give her a break, she calls on her fairy godmother for assistance. The help comes […]

The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz | SLJ Review

YA-HS-Saenz-TheInexplicableLogicofMyLife

SÁENZ, Benjamin Alire. The Inexplicable Logic of My Life. 464p. ebook available. Clarion. Mar. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780544586505. POP

Gr 9 Up –It is the first day of senior year, and Sal feels as if his life is exactly as it should be. He has always been certain of his place with his adoptive gay father and their loving Mexican American extended family. Sal’s best friend, Samantha, is almost like his sister. She really gets him, and more […]

The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or, the Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog by Adam Gidwitz | SLJ Audio Review

AU-Gidwitz-InquisitorsTale

GIDWITZ, Adam. The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or, the Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog. 8 CDs. 10:14 hrs. Listening Library. Sept. 2016. $40. ISBN 9780735287389. digital download.

Gr 5-8 –The year is 1242; the setting: a roadside inn on the outskirts of a small French town. Travelers from all corners of France share what they know about the country’s most notorious outlaws: a group of three children and their dog. Jeanne is a peasant girl able to see the […]

Who Killed Christopher Goodman? by Allan Wolf | SLJ Review

who killed christopher goodman

WOLF, Allan. Who Killed Christopher Goodman? 288p. Candlewick. Mar. 2017. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780763656133.

Gr 9 Up –Christopher Goodman wears ridiculous bell bottoms, and the way he shakes hands with people is a little strange. He’s also a genuinely nice guy, which is why everyone in Goldsburg, VA, is shocked when Chris is murdered during 1979’s Deadwood Days, a Western street festival that draws tourists to the town every summer. While on a cross-country run, classmates Doc Chestnut and […]

Bravo!: Poems About Amazing Hispanics by Margarita Engle | SLJ Review

NF-MHS-Engle-Bravo!

ENGLE, Margarita. Bravo!: Poems About Amazing Hispanics. illus. by Rafael López. 48p. Holt. Mar. 2017. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780805098761.

Gr 4-7 –Engle highlights 18 Latinxs from a range of ethnic backgrounds and countries of origin, all of whom lived in what is now the United States or its territories. Each person made a positive impact on U.S. history, and although some are not well-known, their contributions warrant an important place in the U.S. collective cultural knowledge. Engle’s masterly first-person […]

Honestly Ben by Bill Konigsberg | SLJ Review

YA-HS-Konigsberg-HonestlyBen

KONIGSBERG, Bill. Honestly Ben. 336p. ebook available. Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine Bks. Apr. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780545858267.

Gr 9 Up –Ben Carver works hard trying to please his friends, his teammates, his teachers, and, most important, his father. Barely keeping up with his classwork, extracurricular activities, and friendships, Ben wonders if he does all of these things for himself or just to placate those around him. He grapples with staying true to himself, even if he isn’t sure who […]

Ghost by Jason Reynolds | SLJ Audio Review

au-reynolds-ghost

REYNOLDS, Jason. Ghost. digital download. 3:29 hrs. S. & S. Audio. Aug. 2016. $14.99. ISBN 9781508230472.

Gr 5-9 –Guy Lockard has assumed the mantle of narrator-of-choice for Reynolds’s fiction: Ghost (2016 National Book Award finalist) is Lockard’s third Reynolds title, following As Brave as You and Rashad’s chapters in All American Boys. Here, as seventh grader Castle “Ghost” Crenshaw, Lockard performs with excitable bravado, ruminating honesty, and trash-talking speed. Ghost runs fast with good reason, having escaped his father, […]

Defending Frequently Challenged Young Adult Books: A Handbook for Librarians and Educators by Pat R. Scales | SLJ Review

EH170117_ScalesBook

SCALES, Pat R. Defending Frequently Challenged Young Adult Books: A Handbook for Librarians and Educators. 244p. appendix. Rowman & Littlefield. Sept. 2016. Tr $38.99. ISBN 9781442264328.

As the title implies, this volume serves as a resource for public and school librarians who face complaints or objections to books housed within their young adult collections. There are 54 separate examples listed alphabetically by title (including Go Ask Alice, Sherman Alexie’s The Absolute True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Judy Blume’s […]

Here We Are: 44 Voices Write, Draw, and Speak About Feminism for the Real World ed. by Kelly Jensen | SLJ Review

here-we-are

JENSEN, Kelly, ed. Here We Are: 44 Voices Write, Draw, and Speak About Feminism for the Real World. illus. by Laura Palese. 240p. further reading. illus. photos. websites. Algonquin. Jan. 2017. pap. $16.95. ISBN 9781616205867.

Gr 7 Up –The ever-evolving concept of feminism is approached through a variety of mediums, from essays and drawings to comics and poems, in this fantastic collected work. In six chapters, more than 40 contributors explore how necessary feminism is for both women and […]

Google Launches Toontastic 3D, an App for Telling Animated Stories

Toontastic Story arc 600

Unlike other tools that focus on the technical aspects of filmmaking, Toontastic 3D emphasizes storytelling, according to Google, which released the free app for Android and iOS devices today.

Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson | SLJ Review

piecing-me-together

WATSON, Renée. Piecing Me Together. 272p. Bloomsbury. Feb. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781681191058.

Gr 7 Up –High school junior Jade is an “at-risk” student from a rough neighborhood in Portland, OR. She is also a talented collage artist, and she attends an elite private school on scholarship. More than anything, she wants to go on a study abroad week offered at her school to use her Spanish skills. Instead, she is given an invitation to join Woman to Woman, […]

The Princess and the Warrior: A Tale of Two Volcanoes | SLJ DVD Review

the-princess-and-the-warrior

The Princess and the Warrior: A Tale of Two Volcanoes. 18 min. Dist. by Dreamscape. 2016. $38.99. ISBN 9781520049472.

K-Gr 4 –Award-winning author/illustrator Duncan Tonatiuh has taken a treasured Mexican folktale and rewritten it with spare, Aztec-inspired artwork in this story of Princess Itza, whose heart was won not by a prince but by a humble warrior. His only chance to marry the princess lies in victory against the enemy. That triumph, however, is useless, for upon his return, […]

Pictures of the Week | Celebrating Chris Jackson, Editor & Publisher

xxxPhoto credit: Nancy Mercado, Scholastic

Latinx in Publishing and POC & Natives in Publishing celebrated the legendary editor Chis Jackson on January 5 in New York City.

Decelerate Blue by Adam Rapp | SLJ Review

decelerate-blue

RAPP, Adam. Decelerate Blue. illus. by Mike Cavallaro. 208p. First Second. Feb. 2017. pap. $17.99. ISBN 9781596431096.

Gr 10 Up –Welcome to a brave new world that is marketing-forward and tech-heavy. Culture has been reduced to snippets of perfectly packaged and abbreviated elements. It’s a world run by the Guarantee Committee (GC), and the inhabitants are “protected” and monitored to ensure that they are keeping everything short. Students at Hyper High no longer study the classics; instead, they take […]

SLJ’s January 2017 Popular Picks

1701-POPpicks-TN

SLJ is ringing in the New Year with this January Popular Picks list! This month includes a story about a badger who realizes his obsession with cleanliness has gone too far; the return of Aaron Blabey’s “Bad Guys”; a stunning graphic novel about Artemis, the goddess of the hunt; and an autobiography by soccer star Carli Lloyd, recently voted FIFA’s Best Women’s Soccer Player.