February 17, 2018

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SLJ Reviews

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8 Nonfiction Series from Smaller Publishers

Smaller publishers dominate this latest nonfiction series update.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Deej | SLJ DVD Review

Gr 9 Up –David James Savarese, or Deej, was adopted at age three after his abandonment by his birth mother.

Teens Review True Crime, Memoirs, and More

Our latest batch of reviews by teens include evaluations of a gothic romance, a stirring refugee story, and a heartrending memoir of abuse and redemption.

A Girl Like That by Tanaz Bhathena | SLJ Review

Gr 8 Up –When Zarin and her friend Porus die in a car accident in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, everyone, from the religious police to Zarin’s classmates, is suspicious—was Porus one of Zarin’s many romantic liaisons? Only the deceased teens know the truth, and as their spirits hover above the wreckage, they look back on what led up to this point.

Book Review: American Panda by Gloria Chao

Publisher’s description An incisive, laugh-out-loud contemporary debut about a Taiwanese-American teen whose parents want her to be a doctor and marry a Taiwanese Ivy Leaguer despite her squeamishness with germs and crush on a Japanese classmate. At seventeen, Mei should be in high school, but skipping fourth grade was part of her parents’ master plan. […]

Review of the Day: The Mad Wolf’s Daughter by Diane Magras

The Mad Wolf’s Daughter By Diane Magras Kathy Dawson Books (an imprint of Penguin) $16.99 ISBN: 978-0-525-53134-0 Ages 9-12 On shelves March 6th Sometimes you just want to read a book that knows how to run. There are many way to define the term “great writing” as it applies to children’s literature. Eloquent. Ennobling. Distinguished. […]

Ink, Iron, and Glass by Gwendolyn Clare | SLJ Review

Gr 9 Up –Elsa is a scripted being. She was called into existence as subtext by a scriptologist, a maker of worlds who made Veldana, the place where she lives.

Danza! Amalia Hernández and El Ballet Folklórico de México | SLJ DVD Review

Danza! Amalia Hernández and El Ballet Folklórico de México. 22 min. Dreamscape. 2017. $38.99. ISBN 9781520081144.

Gr 2 Up –Animation brings to life Duncan Tonatiuh’s biography of Amalia Hernández, the talented dancer and founder of the Ballet Folklórico de México. Tonatiuh’s distinctive art style is combined with the different folkloric dances of various regions of Mexico. The vibrant illustrations leap off the screen as Hernández begins to learn ballet and travels through Mexico to study the histories and dances of the regions. […]

Tradition by Brendan Kiely | SLJ Review

Gr 9 Up –Traditions at Fullbrook Academy: seniors escort freshmen to the Winter Ball; hockey players stack a puck in their window for each sexual conquest; and rich kids rule.

9 New Perspectives on WWII | SLJ Spotlight

Nine titles across various genres will fuel fresh discussions of World War II.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

‘Notorious RBG’ and Other High-Interest Nonfiction | February 2018 Xpress Reviews

Bilingual books and biographies/memoirs take center stage in this month’s web-only reviews.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Picture Books: Pioneer Tales, Princess Tresses, and Tantrums | February 2018 Xpress Reviews

A mischievous baby visits a West African market with mama; Ludwig helps out a friend in a creative, multi-textual adventure; animal friends make time for one another in a gentle Spanish-language title; and much more in this month’s Xpress.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Graphic Novels: America Chavez, Alex Rider, and a Soccer King | February 2018 Xpress Reviews

Graphic novel adaptations of classics by Twain and Poe; a sweet story of a Jurassic New York resident; Clare’s “Mortal Instruments” for fans and newcomers; and much more in this month’s Xpress.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Was the Cat in the Hat Black? by Philip Nel | SLJ Review

In five essays, children’s lit expert and Seuss scholar Nel (The Annotated Cat) critiques the insidious nature of racism in kids’ books.

Book Review: The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza by Shaun David Hutchinson

Publisher’s description From the critically acclaimed author of We Are the Ants and At the Edge of the Universe comes a mind-bending, riveting novel about a teen who was born to a virgin mother and realizes she has the power to heal—but that power comes at a huge cost. Sixteen-year-old Elena Mendoza is the product of a virgin birth. […]

Book Review: Is This Guy For Real?: The Unbelievable Andy Kaufman by Box Brown

Publisher’s description Comedian and performer Andy Kaufman’s resume was impressive—a popular role on the beloved sitcom Taxi, a high-profile stand-up career, and a surprisingly successful stint in professional wrestling. Although he was by all accounts a sensitive and thoughtful person, he’s ironically best remembered for his various contemptible personas, which were so committed and so convincing […]

An Interplanetary Middle Grade Paradox | February 2018 Xpress Reviews

A adventurous middle grade debut centers an super-galactic heroine in this month’s Xpress.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

YA: Dangerous Aristocrats, Hijinks in Berlin, and an Asexual Romance | February 2018 Xpress Reviews

Eight novels explore the perils of elite boarding schools, the Irish War of Independence, supervillain parents, and much more in this month’s YA Xpress.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Chapter Books: Fairy Moms and Pulverizing Princesses | February 2018 Xpress Reviews

Four chapter books explore magical moms sharing wisdom; a princess with knightly aspirations; and a shy student uplifting her loved ones in this month’s Xpress.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2018 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Life Inside My Mind by Jessica Burkhart | SLJ Review

Gr 9 Up –In this much-needed, enlightening book, 31 young adult authors write candidly about mental health crises, either their own or that of someone very close to them.