Half A Chance by Cynthia Lord


One of my most cherished summer memories centers on reading. In it, I’m nine years old, and I have just returned from the Marietta, Ohio, public library with my grandmother and a pile of books. As I settle into a favorite chair to read, I know I will have days of uninterrupted time to go […]

Family, Friendship, Seasons, Summer
Featured on July 14

On My Honor by Marion Dane Bauer


Today marks the seventy-fifth birthday of one of the loveliest ladies in the children’s book field, Marion Dane Bauer. I first met Marion, who has lived in Minneapolis most of her life, in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, at Hattiesburg’s fabulous book festival. I already knew I loved her work; but after meeting Marion, I realized that the […]

Award Winning, Feelings, Friendship, Newbery
Featured on November 20

Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman
Illustrated by Dan Yaccarino

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The 20th Singapore Robotic Games is taking place today at the Science Center in Singapore. Does this sound like fun or what? Since I can’t be there, I am doing the next best thing: picking up Ame Dyckman’s Boy + Bot, one of the funniest and most original picture books of 2012. In a very […]

Friendship, Science, Technology, Toys
Featured on January 23

George and Martha by James Marshall

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Were he still living, I’d be sending  birthday greetings to Jim Marshall today. He died at the age of fifty, much too young and with too many great books still to come. And I have missed him, personally and professionally, for twenty years. A highly sophisticated human being, Jim grew up in San Antonio, Texas, […]

Animals, Friendship
Featured on October 10

Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu
Illustrated by Erin McGuire

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December is Read a New Book Month; many are hunting for new books not only to read but to buy for the holidays. Because of the robust young adult market, those authors who write books for fourth through sixth graders have been a bit overlooked. Fortunately, this is not true of our book of the […]

Adventure, Family, Friendship, Multicultural, School
Featured on December 21

Arthur’s Nose by Marc Brown

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Today for Great Books Week (October 6-12) , I’d like to look at a modest picture book that launched an empire: Marc Brown’s Arthur’s Nose. In 1976 a failed television weatherman, Marc Brown, published his first picture book under the astute guidance of Emilie McLeod of Atlantic Monthly Press. Emilie, one of those most respected […]

Animals, Friendship, Humor
Featured on October 7

Hidden by Helen Frost

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Around this time of year families and children start wrapping up summer activities and begin to prepare for a new school year. All those summer camps, weeklong or month-long, come to an end. In 2011 Helen Frost published Hidden, a novel that will make me look at those summer camps in a slightly different way. […]

Adventure, Friendship, Seasons, Summer, Survival
Featured on August 10

Dog and Bear by Laura Vaccaro Seeger


Since 1935, the first Sunday in August has been celebrated as Friendship Day. The organizers of the event often quote Albert Camus on the subject: “Don’t walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don’t walk behind me, I may not lead. Walk beside me and be my friend.” Some of our most long-lasting […]

Animals, Dogs, Friendship, Toys
Featured on August 7

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling

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Today marks the birthday of the world’s best-known literary character. He has taken his place along with Sherlock Holmes and Winnie the Pooh as a household name. And he’s only been around since 1998. If you guessed that his name is Harry Potter, you are correct. Harry emerged in the mind of his creator J. […]

Adventure, Friendship, Magic
Featured on July 31

Frog and Toad by Arnold Lobel


In June of 1970, one of the best children’s books about friendship was published, Arnold Lobel’s Frog and Toad Are Friends, a Caldecott Honor book. Lobel, who studied at Pratt to become an illustrator, made the most important connection of his creative career when he walked into Harper & Row one day to show his portfolio. […]

Animals, Friendship, Frogs
Featured on June 20

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

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In June of 1908, Anne of Green Gables appeared on the list of a small Boston firm, L.C. Page and Company. Then-unknown Canadian author L.M. Montgomery had found it difficult to find a publisher in the United States—and so she did what so many new authors do today. She submitted to the Page brothers because […]

Family, Friendship, History, Humor
Featured on June 14

Daily children’s book recommendations and events from Anita Silvey.

Discover the stories behind the children’s book classics . . .

The new books on their way to becoming classics . . .

And events from the world of children’s books—and the world at large.