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April 23, 2014

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Where Babies Come From, a Jazz Legend, & One Brave Chicken | Stars List, April 2014

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From an ode to an innovative jazz musician to an unreliable narrator-driven YA novel, check out the book and multimedia titles that made SLJ’s April list of stellar offererings.

This article was published in School Library Journal's April 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Book/Multimedia Starred Reviews

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From a comically cosmic space adventure to a rip-roaring tall tale to several in-depth looks at the lives of fascinating American figures, the January Stars offer opportunities for readers to engage in joyful escapism or intensive close reading.

This article was published in School Library Journal's January 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ’s Best Books, Top 10s of 2013

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SLJ’s best of 2013, from the book lists to tech trends. New this year and among our most popular posts: SLJ’s Top 10 Latino-themed Books of 2013.

SLJ Top 10 DVDs for 2013

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With so many superb DVD productions in 2013, it was a tough task to choose the 10 best. This year’s top picks reflect an array of topics including art, science, biography, and social studies, with Ken Burns’s documentary The Dust Bowl leading the list.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

The Good Comics for Kids 2013 Gift Guide

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The holidays are a great time to give the gift of comics. Once again, our bloggers have a big bag of suggestions of comics for a variety of ages and interests.

SLJ’s Top 10 Latino-themed Books of 2013

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This has been a stellar year for Latino-themed titles for children. SLJ’s Libro por Libro columnist, Tim Wadham, selected 10 of the best works published this year that represent the vibrant Hispanic cultures united by a single language and heritage.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ’s Top 10 Graphic Novels of 2013

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The “Good Comics for Kids” (blogs.slj.com/goodcomicsforkids) bloggers were burning the midnight oil this year, with a batch of top-notch fall releases that kept us reading—and debating—right up to our deadline. The top trend this year: kids’ books with adult appeal.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ’s Top 10 Apps of 2013

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It’s a year-long process, but after watching hours upon hours of apps and debating their finer points, we have come up with “SLJ’s Top Ten Apps 2013.” Our list includes innovative works of stunning quality and depth, along with some familiar characters that host loads of engaging interactivity and game play.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ Best Books 2013 Picture Books

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SLJ’s book review editors selected the best picture books of 2013. This year’s list includes memorable characters, including a dancing flamingo, some unhappy crayons, a repressed tiger, and punctuation personified. These titles will delight, inspire, and entertain.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ Best Books 2013 Nonfiction

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SLJ’s book review editors selected the best nonfiction titles of 2013. Here you’ll find rich primary source material, engaging narrative style, and sophisticated design. Historical giants as well as little known figures are profiled in this list of distinguished informational books.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ Best Books 2013 Fiction

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SLJ’s book review editors have chosen the best fiction titles of 2013. From a plucky pig sailing to the south pole to a endearing story of first love, the middle grade and young adult titles on this list feature three-dimensional characters, fully realized worlds, and stories that stay with the reader long after the last page.

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ Best Books 2013 Adult Books 4 Teens

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Every fall the “Adult Books 4 Teens” reviewers come together to nominate, discuss, and select the best reading of the year for a list that guarantees a combination of excellence and appeal to young adults. All of these books were originally reviewed on SLJ’s “Adult Books 4 Teens” blog (blog.schoollibraryjournal.com/adult4teen).

This article was published in School Library Journal's December 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

SLJ’s December Cover | Best Books 2013

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School Library Journal’s annual best books issue, this year illustrated by Melissa Sweet.

SLJ to Reveal 2013 Best Books on Twitter

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Join SLJ editors on Thursday, November 21, 8 pm EST, during the third annual SLJ Best Books Twitter party, as they reveal the titles that made the 2013 SLJ Best Books list. From picture books to graphic novels and nonfiction to Adult Books for Teens, this year’s picks exemplify the stellar offerings created by authors, illustrators, and publishers of kids’ books

Best Audiobooks: 20 Must-Have Titles for Tweens and Teens

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To compile our 2013 list of best audiobooks, we asked some audio-savvy school and public librarians for their recommendations. The following selections have been chosen for their outstanding text, narration, sound quality, and how well the audio enhances listeners’ appreciation of the written work.

This article was published in School Library Journal's November 2013 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Book/Multimedia Review Stars List | May 2013

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May, a month of “ducky” stars.

The YALSA Hub Reading Challenge, Shiny and New

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Have you heard about “The Hub Reading Challenge,” sponsored by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA)? As reported in SLJ’s Good Comics for Kids blog, YALSA is hosting an expanded, new and improved The Hub Reading Challenge for 2013. This is how it works: you have until June 22 to read as many titles as you can from YALSA’s official challenge list. Once you hit the 25 book mark, you’re eligible to submit a reader’s response for any of the titles you’ve read. Sure, there’s a prize, and you can earn a badge too!

On the Radar Teen: 2013 Award Winners for Teen Readers

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A week after the “big reveal” at the American Library Association’s midwinter meeting, everyone is still talking about the latest award-winning titles. Young Adult Library Services Association committees select books for teens from 12 to 18 years of age, with a broad range of reading abilities and maturity levels. Whether they are edgy or informative, these buzz-worthy books will circulate among your students for years to come.

MWA Announces 2013 Edgar Awards Nominees

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The Mystery Writers of America has announced the nominees for its 2013 Edgar Allan Poe Awards, honoring the best in mystery fiction, non-fiction, and television from the previous year, in celebration of the 204th anniversary of Poe’s birth.

Top Book Choices for Youth in Detention (2013)

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I guess we’re going make this an annual thing. Last January, SLJTeen ran my top choices for 2011, and here I am again with my 2012 picks. As you may remember, Coe Booth’s Bronxwood and Simone Elkeles’s Chain Reaction were on last year’s list. In a blog post, Booth wrote that she purposefully deleted the new novel she was working on. That takes courage and commitment. Her novels show her dedication to excellence, and teens respond. Elkeles is working on a new four-book series about football entitled Wild Cards. When I asked if there were also girls and guns in it, she replied, “There are always girls and romance and guys with lots of testosterone! No guns in the first book, but it gets gritty in the second when one of the boys gets caught up in gang activity.”