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Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate

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During National Poetry Month, I have been featuring some of the best single poetry volumes of recent years. But today I want to take a look at a free-verse novel, Home of the Brave, by Katherine Applegate. She is best known for her Newbery novel The One and Only Ivan, which was published in 2007. […]

African American, Animals, Cows, Multicultural, Politics
Featured on April 20

Make Lemonade by Virginia Euwer Wolff

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Today marks the birthday of American author Virginia Euwer Wolff. She grew up on her family’s fruit ranch in Oregon’s Cascade Mountains. Her father died when she was five—she would later create many fatherless children in her novels. A violinist, Wolff attended Smith College, and then traveled with her husband and two children. In the […]

Family, School, Women
Featured on August 25

The Watch that Ends the Night by Allan Wolf

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On July 13, 1864, John Jacob Astor IV was born in Rhinebeck, New York. He would become the richest man in the world—a land developer, inventor, and even author of a science fiction novel. Today Astor is best remembered as one of the victims of the Titanic. He serves as one of the multiple narrators […]

20th Century, History
Featured on July 13

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

Hurricane Dancers by Margarita Engle

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This month marks the beginning of the Atlantic, Caribbean, and Gulf of Mexico hurricane season. June also marks Caribbean-American Heritage Month. Both events are celebrated in the book of the day, Margarita Engle’s Hurricane Dancers. In a powerful, 145-page poetic novel, Engle presents a fresh and unusual look at Cuba, its history from 1509–1510, and […]

16th Century, History, Hurricanes, Latino, Multicultural, Weather
Featured on June 5

Love That Dog by Sharon Creech

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April has been designated Poetry Month by the  Academy of American Poets. If I could make any single volume the book of the month, I would choose Sharon Creech’s Love That Dog, published by the Newbery-Award winner author in 2001. In a small volume of one hundred pages, Sharon uses free verse to celebrate poetry and the […]

Animals, Dogs, School
Featured on April 7

Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse

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On March 4, 1791, Vermont became the 14th state admitted to the Union. Certainly at the time, the event did not seemed connected to the children’s book community. But by the beginning of the twenty-first century, Vermont had emerged as one of the best environments for those who create books for children and young adults. […]

Award Winning, Great Depression, History, Newbery
Featured on March 4

Diamond Willow by Helen Frost

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Today marks Alaska’s statehood day, when in 1959 Alaska became the forty-ninth state in the Union. Of the myriad books for children that have been set in Alaska, my favorite, Diamond Willow by Helen Frost, appeared recently in 2008. Frost lived and taught for three years in a small Athabascan community in interior Alaska. Many […]

Adventure, Animals, Dogs, Multicultural, Native American, Religion/Spirituality, Survival
Featured on January 3

Crossing Stones by Helen Frost

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On this day in history, the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, World War I ended in 1918. America’s involvement came late in the conflict, and, in fact, most of the books written about World War I for young readers have originated in England. But Crossing Stones by Helen Frost, written entirely […]

Family, History, Women, Women's Suffrage, World War I
Featured on November 11

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.