What if a book continued to resonate for its readers in a tangible way long after the pages were closed? What if books inspired, not just individual–but collective and collaborative response, creative expression, participation, action? What if communities formed around books? What if author’s webspace inspired true dialogue and interaction? And how can librarians, with [...]
How I Discovered Poetry, Marilyn Nelson, illustrated by Hadley Hooper Dial Books, January 2014 Reviewed from final copy Marilyn Nelson, author of the 2006 Printz honor book A Wreath for Emmett Till, is responsible for what may be this year’s most unique contender, pairing two genres only occasionally spotted in the YA world — memoir [...]
At Home in Her Tomb: Lady Dai and the Ancient Chinese Trasures of Mawangdui By Christine Liu-Perkins Charlesbridge $19.95 978-1-58089-370-1 Ages 9-12 On shelves now When I say the word “mummy” what springs into your mind? Movies starring Brendan Fraser? Egypt and scarabs and rolls of crumbling papyrus? Absolutely. But what if I told you [...]
Before They Were Famous: Young Carl Sagan, Golda Meir, and Alice Waters | Nonfiction Preschool to Grade 4
This month, SLJ highlights some picture books about famous figures—before they made it big. Barbara Krasner details Golda Meir’s first stab at leadership, Stephanie Roth Sisson offers a glimpse of Carl Sagan’s childhood dreams about the stars, and Jacqueline Briggs examines foodie Alice Waters, starting with the early years.
This article was published in School Library Journal's September 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.
Rainbow Rowell’s many, many teen readers are definitely not the target audience for her summer novel, Landline, but no matter. Rowell’s signature clever dialogue and snappy one-liners are in generous supply as one women tries to save her marriage. And while a failing marriage is not a favorite literary topic among teens, this novel also takes [...]
High school is behind you, but you’re not quite an independent adult. Today’s reviews cover one book of essays and stories written during–and one graphic novel memoir written about–the college years. Marina Keegan was a talented writer who died days after graduating from Yale. She had lined up a position as an editorial assistant at The [...]
“In comparing football players to drug dealers, Almond’s point is that football is among the very few limited options available to black youth,” writes Mark Flowers. The Adult Books 4 Teens blogger considers Burning Down the House, by Nell Bernstein, and Against Football, by Steve Almond.
Today we review two books that offer intriguing, even haunting, stories from unfamiliar cultures. Both are inspired by the family histories and folktales the authors were told by family members, one Native American, one Vietnamese. We begin with House of Purple Cedar, an historical novel that reveals both the daily and spiritual life of one [...]
I mentioned in our Best Books of the Year so far post that “If I’d had a week longer, I would have been able to list a tremendous memoir which we’ll be featuring here shortly.” Well, it’s been shortly, and here it is: Keven Brockmeier’s A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip. As a mention below, [...]
Separate is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family’s Fight for Desegretation By Duncan Tonatiuh Harry N. Abrams $18.95 ISBN: 978-1419710544 Ages 7-12 On shelves now If I blame my childhood education for anything I suppose it would be for instilling in me the belief that the history worth learning consisted of a set of [...]
Joanna Rakoff’s wonderfully engaging memoir, My Salinger Year, shares the author’s experiences during the year she moves to New York City straight out of grad school. She sort of maybe wants to be a poet. She knows she wants to work with books. Maybe publishing? She leaves her boyfriend behind, even though he sounds like [...]
Back in January, we looked at a pair of memoirs about young lives stolen through abuse and disease, and today we have two more memoirs touching on the same themes, along with a third which looks at the threat of the law. Unlike Elizabeth Smart’s somewhat older story, the tale of the captivity and dramatic [...]
Fans of realistic fiction have a boatload of titles to choose from this summer. There’s the bad boy/good girl plot, the summer dare, teen pregnancy, and choosing between family and self. SLJTeen reviewers suggest these possible additions to beach reads lists.
We’re covering both coasts today — from a novel set in New York City high society to a memoir by a Los Angeles paparazzo. Perhaps all I need to say about The Heiresses is the name of its author, Sara Shepard. Given the success of her novels and of the television series based on them, [...]
Presenting the best adult books for teens that were published between January and June 2014. Science fiction and historical fiction made a big splash in this list created by reviewers of the AB4T blog.
Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla By Katherine Applegate Illustrated by G. Brian Karas Clarion Books (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) ISBN: 9780544252301 $17.99 Grades K and Up In Stores October 7, 2014 *Best New Book* Find it at: Schuler Books | Your Library Since I cried while reading this book, the topic [...]
In tribute to Maya Angelou, we offer the words of one of our reviewers who shares the way the author influenced her life, and the way that encounter shapes her work today. Amy Cheney is a librarian at Alameda County Library, CA, where she serves teens incarcerated at the Alameda Juvenile Hall. One of her primary goals [...]
BookExpo America is one of my favorite events of the year. It’s all books all the time. And now that the availability of e-galleys effectively lessens my need for paper galleys (well, in some cases), the pressure of making it to this or that booth at a particular time is off. More time and energy [...]
The Fly (Disgusting Critters series) By Elise Gravel Tundra Books ISBN: 9781770496361 $10.99 Grades K-3 Out Now Find it at: Schuler Books | Your Library I am, if nothing else, on the lookout for books that will be engaging to kids. There’s plenty of nonfiction out there that does the job admirably – providing information [...]
Today we look at two books that take very different looks at the dark secrets we keep. In Bittersweet, Miranda Beverly-Whittemore’s plays up the skeletons in the closets of the wealthy Winslow family for fun and entertainment: as a young college student begins to uncover the secrets of her new roommate’s family, the tone turns [...]