Caldecott Medal Winners
2019
Hello Lighthouse
Book Jacket   Sophie Blackall
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. This tribute to lighthouses of an earlier era focuses on one lighthouse and its dedicated keeper. Perched "on the highest rock of a tiny island / at the edge of the world," the lighthouse shines for seafaring ships. A new keeper arrives, continuing the endless routine of polishing the lens, refilling the oil, trimming the wick, winding the clockwork, painting the round rooms, fishing, making tea, sending letters to his wife (in bottles), and writing daily in his logbook. One day, a ship delivering supplies brings the keeper's wife! The keeper rings a warning bell in fog, rescues wrecked sailors, and logs his baby's birth. When he's ill, his stalwart wife tends the light and maintains the logbook. Eventually, a mechanical light replaces the keeper. While the spare, unemotional text resembles a keeper's log, the book's vertical orientation echoes a lighthouse tower. Rendered in Chinese ink and watercolor, precise, detailed illustrations present the lighthouse surrounded by patterned blue, green, or gray waves depending on the weather or season, reinforcing its solitary enterprise. A cutaway interior view exposes a compact, contained world. Close-ups of the keeper and his wife (both white) in porthole-shaped frames and from unusual aerial views emphasize their isolated, intimate, circular environment. An "About Lighthouses" section adds insightful detail. A fascinating, splendidly executed peek into both the mundane and the dramatic aspects of lighthouse life. (Picture book. 4-7) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780316362382 This tall, narrow picture book opens as a new keeper arrives to take up his duties at a remote lighthouse; it ends with his departure, automation having made his job obsolete. In between we are treated to a series of snapshots of lighthouse-keeper life--a mix of routine and excitement. Blackall's gorgeous illustrations provide both homey detail and spectacular scenery. An extensive and lively author's note is appended. (c) Copyright 2018. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2019
Alma and How She Got Her Name
Book Jacket   Juana Martinez Neal
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Alma Sofia Esperanza Jos Pura Candela has a very long name, and she's about to find out how she came to have it.Alma is a cute little girl with the sweetest pair of striped red-and-white pants ever. She also happens to have a very long nameso long, in fact, that it never fits. Her father sits her down to tell her the story of her name, "Then you decide if it fits." And so Alma learns about her grandmother Sofia; her great-grandmother Esperanza; her grandfather Jos; her great-aunt Pura; and her other grandmother Candela. And Alma? She learns Alma was picked just for her. "You will make your own story." Peruvian-born Martinez-Neal never expresses it in the text, but the illustrations are filled with references to Peru, the country where Alma's family comes from. Mostly monochromatic against a cream background, the illustrationsprint transfers with graphite and colored pencilsare delightful, capturing the distinctive essences of Alma's many namesakes. Alma is depicted as the color of the paper background, with pink cheeks and a black bob haircut. Whereas the story starts with Alma's name written in a childish print on a piece of paper that needs an extra piece of paper taped to it, the story ends with Alma's name in grand and elegant display types. That's her name, and it fits her just right! A Spanish edition, Alma y cmo obtuvo su nombre, publishes simultaneously.A celebration of identity, family and belonging. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780763693558 Alma Sofia Esperanza Josi Pura Candela feels self-conscious about her long name until her father tells her about the family members after whom she is named. The pictures--grayscale print-transfer illustrations with soft textures--steal the show in their depiction of the sweet closeness between Alma and her father as well as her connection to her ancestors. Also available in Spanish. (c) Copyright 2018. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2019
A Big Mooncake for Little Star
 Grace Lin
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Little Star has trouble resisting the Big Mooncake that Mama has hung in the sky in Lin's (When the Sea Turned Silver, 2016, etc.) luminous departure from her usual block-print style.After Little Star and her mama, both wearing jet-black pajamas adorned with bright yellow stars, bake a huge yellow mooncake, Mama reminds Little Star to leave it in the sky to cool. Of course Little Star tries, but she wakes in the night, unable to resist taking a tiny nibble. Mama surely won't notice. Each subsequent night, Little Star steals another bite, and soon observant readers may realize what is happening: The Big Mooncake is waning from a full moon to a new moon. Lin's storytelling is both clever and radiant. Painted in gouache against perfectly black pages, the characters' pajamas have no edges, only the stars defining the separation between foreground and background. The mooncake gleams against the black as well, crumbs scattering like stars in the skya visual delight, suffusing the book with a feeling of otherworldliness that is offset by Little Star's childlike authenticity and her loving relationship with Mama. An author's note on the jacket flap indicates that while this story is not rooted in Chinese cosmology, it is Lin's homage to the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival, her "favorite Asian holiday."A warm and glowing modern myth. (Picture book. 3-8) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780316404488 In the night sky, Little Star and her mother bake a mooncake, the sweet treat associated with the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. As the Big Mooncake hangs to cool, the girl's hunger overcomes her. It's all mesmerizing: Little Star's astral home; her outsized sense of mischief; the dwindling, nibbled-upon cake as a stand-in for the waning moon; and Lin's pleasing, soothing text, perfect for reading aloud to little moon-watchers on Earth. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2019
The Rough Patch
 Brian Lies
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780062671271 Evan (an anthropomorphized fox) and his dog enjoy doing everything together, especially working in Evan's garden. Lies's lush acrylic, oil, and colored-pencil illustrations with delicate line work evoke the magnificence of Evan's garden, then his intense sadness and isolation after his beloved dog dies. This tender story of loss, hope, and recovery comes full circle when Evan hesitantly returns to gardening--and gets a new puppy, to boot. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Nature brings healing and a reawakening of the heart.Evan, a farmer, is a red fox; his best friend and trusty companion is a black mutt. They do everything together, including work in Evan's lush garden. Eventually the dog dies, and Evan is inconsolable. Progressing through the stages of grief, Evan mourns, then feels bitter anger and destroys the garden, hacking it to pieces (presumably not, as some readers may wonder, the corner where he buried his friend). Matching Evan's mood, the formerly beautiful place is now weed-filled and forlorn. A creeping pumpkin vine gradually helps Evan to reassess his thinking. Deciding not to destroy the nascent plant, he cultivates it; his tender horticultural touch allows the pumpkin to develop into a gourd of enormous proportions. Bringing it to the fair, Evan wins third placeand oh, what a prize he chooses, revealed wordlessly on the book's final page! This story is simply and subtly told with admirably genuine emotion, but the textured, strong-hued art is the real standout. Charming images, such as Evan's gardening boots with holes for claws, and heart-wrenching onesnote Evan's bending over the dog's unmoving bodyare to savor. Lies also matches colors and characters' expressiveness to moods and provides white space around numerous vignettes to focus readers' attention. Reassuring and clear, this is a heartfelt story about loss and discovering that one can love again. (Picture book. 4-7) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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2019
Thank You, Omu!
Book Jacket   Oge Mora
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780316431248 The "scrumptious scent" of grandmotherly Omu's thick red stew wafts out her apartment window; a little boy inquires after the delicious smell, followed by a peckish police officer and more until Omu's generosity means that she has no stew left for dinner. But everyone returns, this time to share with Omu. Mixed-media layers give the collage illustrations depth. Mora times her story perfectly, and repetition will encourage group participation. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Omu makes a stew so delicious everyone in the neighborhood follows their noses to her door.Omu (which means "queen" in IgboOmu is black) is making a "thick red stew in a big fat pot" for her dinner. She tastes it, saying it'll be the most delicious supper she's ever had, while out the window drifts the scent of the "scrumptious" stew until it reaches a little boy. The story is peppered with synonyms for "scrumptious" (itself repeated throughout), allowing readers the chance to discuss and expand vocabulary. When the little boy follows the smell to Omu's door, she kindly offers to share her stew with him. So begins a veritable parade of neighborhood residents who, led by the smell, end up at Omu's door. The collage art adds texture, depth, and distinctiveness to each character. Omu shares her thick red stew with all and receives grateful thanks in reply. Alas, when Omu looks for her own supper, she finds her pot empty. The expressive illustrations convey her despondency as she answers yet another knock at her door to findthat the multiracial neighbors she shared with are back! This time, they have gifts in hand and are ready to make her a wonderful supper, which turns into another shared meal and a dance party.A lovely story of giving and community founded in Nigerian culture. Delectable. (author's note) (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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2018
Wolf in the Snow
Book Jacket   Matthew Cordell
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781250076366 A child carries a lost wolf pup to its family during a blizzard. The wolves repay the favor, staying with the exhausted child and howling until, guided by the wolves' cries, the child's parents arrive. The pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations balance detail and emotion. Hand-lettered sound effects in this otherwise wordless story support the cinematic feel created through varying perspectives and loosely demarcated panels. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781250076366 A child carries a lost wolf pup to its family during a blizzard. The wolves repay the favor, staying with the exhausted child and howling until, guided by the wolves' cries, the child's parents arrive. The pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations balance detail and emotion. Hand-lettered sound effects in this otherwise wordless story support the cinematic feel created through varying perspectives and loosely demarcated panels. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2018
Big Cat, Little Cat
 Elisha Cooper
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781626723719 This unsentimental picture book about the cycle of life rivets our attention on a housecat and its kitten companion--and then, after the death of the first, the now-grown second cat's new companion. Cooper's thick black lines produce figures full of kinetic energy and personality. The circular story is beautifully reinforced by repetition in the spare art and text; it's at once realistic and comforting. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781626723719 This unsentimental picture book about the cycle of life rivets our attention on a housecat and its kitten companion--and then, after the death of the first, the now-grown second cat's new companion. Cooper's thick black lines produce figures full of kinetic energy and personality. The circular story is beautifully reinforced by repetition in the spare art and text; it's at once realistic and comforting. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2018
Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut
 Derrick Barnes
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Safe to say, there's nothing like the feeling of the fresh cut. You feel so extra visible with a fresh new cut, and this book built from that experience translates it in a way never before brought to the children's bookshelf. Basquiat-inspired king insignias and a bit of Kehinde Wiley flair shape portraits of all the various ways men (and women too!) come into the black barbershop to restore their cool, leaving the chair with high self-esteem, self-pride, and confidenceif only for as long as their hairlines remain crisp. It's sacred. The all-important line and the diverse styles take center stage here. The Big Daddy Kane-homage flat-top. The part. The light shape-up surrounded by cornrows and locs. The taper. The classic wavy dark Caesar. Barnes' imaginative prose mirrors the hyperbole and swagger of the barbershop. No cut is just good. It will have you looking "presidential," "majestic." Like you own "a couple of acres of land on Saturn." The swagger is on a million. The sauce is drippin'. James' oil-based portraiture will send many readers reminiscing. This book oozes black cool and timely, much-needed black joy, using the unique and expansive experience of the barbershop to remind young boys that their inner lives have always mattered there. One of the best reads for young black boys in years, it should be in every library, media center, and, yes, barbershop. (Picture book. 5-12) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781572842243 The unnamed black protagonist tells of his barbershop haircut from start to finish, narrating most of it in the second person. James's color-saturated illustrations capture the boy's bravado, swagger, and even his humility, which he needs in accepting a post-cut kiss from his admiring mother. Alternately precise, metaphorical, and culturally specific, Barnes's descriptions make each page a serendipity. A not-to-be-missed portrayal of the beauty of black boyhood. (c) Copyright 2018. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2018
A Different Pond
Book Jacket   Bao Phi
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. A fishing trip is not just a fishing trip in this poignant, semiautobiographical tale. As a young boy growing up in a Vietnamese refugee family in Minneapolis, Phi would wake up "hours before the sun comes up" to go fishing with his dad. Right from the start, he hints at his family's dire straits: "In the kitchen the bare bulb is burning." Readers learn they are up so early because his dad got a second job. And Phi asks innocently, "If you got another job, why do we still have to fish for food?" At the pond, father and son share moments of tenderness. A nod herewhen Phi lights a fire with one strike of a match; a warning thereto avoid "the spicy stuff" in his bologna sandwich. Father and son also bond through stories. "I used to fish by a pond like this one when I was a boy in Vietnam," says Dad. "With your brother?" Phi asks. Dad nods and looks away, a clue to the unspeakable devastation of the war. When they catch enough fish for dinner they head home, Phi dreaming about the landscape of Dad's home country. Together, Phi's gentle, melodic prose and Bui's evocative art, presented in brushy and vividly colored panels and double-page spreads, rise above the melancholy to tell a powerful, multilayered story about family, memory, and the costs of becoming a refugee. Spare and simple, a must-read for our times. (Picture book. 5-9) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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2018
Grand Canyon
Book Jacket   Jason Chin
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781596439504 Vacationing in the Grand Canyon provides a father and daughter--and readers--numerous opportunities to explore this national park's geology and ecology. Travel guidelike narration presents accurate scientific information, as do page perimeters filled with delicate sketches and diagrams. Detailed, scenic watercolors portraying actual sites cleverly feature selected objects through subtle die-cuts that transport the girl back to ancient geologic environments. Reading list. Bib. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781596439504 Vacationing in the Grand Canyon provides a father and daughter--and readers--numerous opportunities to explore this national park's geology and ecology. Travel guidelike narration presents accurate scientific information, as do page perimeters filled with delicate sketches and diagrams. Detailed, scenic watercolors portraying actual sites cleverly feature selected objects through subtle die-cuts that transport the girl back to ancient geologic environments. Reading list. Bib. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2017
Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat
 Javaka Steptoe
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780316213882 The art world first took note of Jean-Michel Basquiat's graffiti in the late 1970s. He earned a large following and several art shows but was often discouraged by racism. Steptoe's style, similar to Basquiat's with its vivid palette and use of found objects, provides a close impression of the painter's work. Appended notes provide additional information about Basquiat's life and art. Bib. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2017
Leave Me Alone!
 Vera Brosgol
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2017
Freedom in Congo Square
Book Jacket   Carole Boston
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781499801033 In Louisiana, enslaved Africans were provided a half-day of rest each Sunday; in New Orleans, they gathered in Congo Square. Spare couplets, describing the labors and horrors of slavery, count down to Sunday. Weatherford sugarcoats nothing, but the text isn't mired in sadness or pain. Christie's illustrations, which recall Jacob Lawrence's work, add even more emotional depth. A foreword provides historical context. (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2017
Du Iz Tak?
Book Jacket   Carson Ellis
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Viewers follow the unfurling of an exotic woodland plant through the actions and invented language of beautifully coiffed and clothed insects. The nonsense narrative is presented through dialogue. Because the conversations connect to specific phenomena and many words are repeated, decoding occurs fairly quickly. Du iz tak? (Probably: What is that?) Ma ebadow unk plonk. (Perhaps: I think its a plant.) The true meaning is anyones guess, but therein lies the fun. A large trim size and an abundance of white space on the opening pages send readers eyes to the delicate ink-and-gouache winged creatures and the small green shoot at the base of the spreads. Over several days and nights, the scene builds: a caterpillar forms a cocoon; a snail emerges from its well-appointed log to lend a ribble (ladder) so its friends can build a furt in the rising stalk; a cricket fiddles in the moonlight. Danger appearsa menacing spider that seems intent on caging the plant in its web until an enormous bird swoops in, altering the course of events. But there is glory too as the gladdenboot blooms and the encapsulated moth takes flight. This is certain to ignite readers interest and imaginings regarding their natural surroundings. Following the minute changes as the pages turn is to watch growth, transformation, death, and rebirth presented as enthralling spectacle. (Picture book. 4-7) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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2017
They All Saw a Cat
 Brendan Wenzel
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781452150130 As a sleek, realistic-looking cat walks "through the world," a diverse assortment of creatures happens upon it, each with a distinct perception of the feline. Rendered in "almost everything imaginable," Wenzel's colorful, dazzling illustrations are as varied from page to page as the animals represented. The spare but steady text uses all-caps and italics for emphasis and plenty of rhythm and repetition. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2016
Finding Winnie: The True Story of the Worlds Most Famous Bear
 Lindsay Mattick
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780316324908 A boy's mother tells him the story of his great-great-grandfather, owner of a baby bear named Winnie, and the circumstances that led to another boy, Christopher Robin Milne, befriending Winnie--inspiring that boy's father to write some children's tales. Mattick, the storytelling mother in this book, embellishes her family's history with evocative, playful language, matched by the period warmth of Blackall's carefully composed images. (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2016
Trombone Shorty
Book Jacket   Troy Andrews
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781419714658 Andrews, a.k.a. Trombone Shorty, concentrates on his younger years: growing up in New Orleans's Tremi neighborhood; making his own instruments before acquiring a trombone; practicing constantly; appearing onstage with Bo Diddley; and finally forming his own successful band. Expressive watercolor collages layer and texture each page, creating a mix of images that echo the combination of styles in Andrews's "musical gumbo. (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2016
Waiting
Book Jacket   Kevin Henkes
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780062368430 Waiting is a huge part of every child's life, and Henkes uses a light touch to address the topic. Five toys, outlined in brown and filled in with muted colors, wait on a windowsill. Time passes slowly through seasons; small changes in body positions and eyes show a range of emotions. A straightforward text sets up predictable patterns with small surprises, while the design is varied to create momentum. (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2016
Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer: The Spirit of the Civil Rights Movement
 Carole Boston Weatherford
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780763665319 Weatherford chronicles the life of civil rights icon Hamer from her beginnings as the child of Mississippi sharecroppers, through the evolution of her political awareness, to her lasting impact on the civil rights movement. Conversational free-verse text seamlessly incorporates direct quotes; richly colored collage illustrations add emotional heft. This majestic biography places the civil rights movement in personal, local, national, and international contexts. Timeline. Bib. (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2016
Last Stop on Market Street
 Matt De La Pena
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780399257742 CJ, a young black boy, has a flurry of questions for his grandmother one rainy day. "How come we always gotta go here after church?" "Here" is a soup kitchen, where they work every Sunday. Nana has bottomless look-on-the-sunny-side answers, but she isn't dispensing bromides; the exquisitely composed collage illustrations showing a glamour-free urban setting forbid a glib reading. A quietly remarkable book. (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2015
The adventures of Beekle : the unimaginary friend
Book Jacket   Dan Santat
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780316199988 Imaginary friend Beekle waits and waits for a child to think him into existence. When it doesn't happen, Beekle sails off to the real world--a city full of boring adults--to find her. Santat's bright digital illustrations capture the vivid land of imagination, the drab adult world, and the giggle-inducing expressions on marshmallow-like Beekle's pudgy white face. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2015
Nana in the city
Book Jacket   by Lauren Castillo
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780544104433 Visiting Nana in the city, the unnamed child narrator is initially unreceptive to the appeal. "The city is busy...loud...[and] filled with scary things." Nana promises to show her young visitor that "the city is wonderful--bustling, booming, and extraordinary," and their tour the following day does just that. The simple, meaningful text is well served by richly detailed watercolors conveying a bustling city. (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2015
The noisy paint box : the colors and sounds of Kandinsky's abstract art
 by Barb Rosenstock ; illustrated by Mary GrandPre
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780307978486 Pioneering abstract artist Vasily Kandinsky experienced "colors as sounds, and sounds as colors," a neurological condition called synesthesia. Concentrating primarily on Kandinsky's childhood, Rosenstock embellishes known events with dialogue. GrandPri does a fine job showing color and sound as abstractions while presenting the artist and his surroundings realistically. An author's note provides more information about the artist and four reproductions. Websites. Bib. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2015
Sam and dave dig a hole.
 Mac Barnett
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. When Sam and Dave dig a hole, readers get "something spectacular." The boys, on the other hand, do not. Their quest to find the spectacular brings them painfully and humorously close to buried jewels as they spade their way into the ground, accompanied by an intrepid canine companion. Readers occupy a superior position as cross-section illustrations reveal those jewels buried just out of the shovels' reach. Each time they near one, the increasingly grubby boys maddeningly change course. On they dig, tunneling in different directions, and each effort reveals (to readers) yet larger jewels evading them. Exhausted, they fall asleep, but the dog digs after a bone it senses below. In an unexpected turn, the ground gives way to nothingness, and the trio falls through empty space "until they landed in the soft dirt." At first glance, it seems they've ended up where they began: A small tree stands on the recto, and a house with a porch is on the verso, as before. But careful readers will notice that the tree here bears pears, while the tree at the story's start had apples. Other differing details (a weathervane duck instead of a chicken; a blue flower instead of a red one; a blue cat collar instead of a red) suggest that they've unwittingly fallen into another dimension. Poor Sam and Dave. Lucky readers. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780763662295 Sam and Dave hope to dig up "something spectacular" but, alas, unearth nothing, repeatedly coming close to (but just missing) precious gems. When their dog, digging for a bone, ruptures the hole's dirt floor, the explorers fall "down, down, down," and land in what appears to be their own yard. Well-chosen words and plentiful white space support readers; cross-section illustrations add visual humor. (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2015
Viva Frida!
Book Jacket   Yuyi Morales
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781596436039 Morales initially shows Kahlo as a puppet: made from steel, polymer clay, and wool, three-dimensional figures are photographed and digitally manipulated inside double-page-spread collages. As we enter Kahlo's mind, the medium changes to lush acrylics. The illustrations are accompanied by just a few words of text in both Spanish and English that leave readers with a dreamlike impression. An ingenious tour de force. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2015
The right word : Roget and his thesaurus
Book Jacket   by Jen Bryant ; illustrated by Melissa Sweet
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780802853851 Apt language and ingenious imagery combine to tell the life story of Peter Mark Roget, creator of the thesaurus. Bryant's linear telling follows Peter closely, expressing his curiosity, sensitivity, and populist spirit in language both decorous and warm. Clever book design and visionary illustration add layers of meaning. Sweet embellishes her own gentle watercolors with all manner of clippings and realia. Reading list, timeline. Bib. (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2015
This one summer
 Mariko Tamaki, Jillian Tamaki
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781626720947 Rose's family goes to Awago Beach every summer. This year she's feeling too old for some of the activities she used to love--and even for her more-childish friend Windy. Rose's contemplative observations and flashbacks, along with the book's realistic dialogue, offer insight into her evolving personality, while the dramatic perspective changes and purply-blue ink illustrations capture the graphic novel's raw emotional core. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2014
Locomotive
 Brian Floca
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781416994152 Striking cinematic front endpapers describe the creation of the Transcontinental Railroad. Then, in a sort of historical-fiction-meets-travelogue narrative, Floca zeroes in on one family's journey from Omaha to San Francisco. Floca excels at juxtaposing sweeping panoramas with intimate, slice-of-life moments. Varied font sizes and styles on the large pages beautifully capture the feel of the Old West. An author's note is included. Bib. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2014
Journey
Book Jacket   Aaron Becker
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780763660536 In the tradition of Harold and the Purple Crayon, this wordless story follows a bored girl who uses a crayon (red) to draw herself into other worlds. Unlike Harold, the worlds she enters are lush, detailed, and elaborate, and she gets pulled into a rescue mission involving a purple bird. There is much to pore over in the watercolor and pen-and-ink illustrations. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2014
Flora and the Flamingo
Book Jacket   Molly Idle
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781452110066 In this unique wordless picture book, a little girl mimics a flamingo's movements. The bird, at first annoyed, eventually relents and teaches her ballet. The book is cinematic, comedic, and balletic, with dynamic pacing facilitated by ingenious flaps. Spare illustrations in tutu-pink with pops of yellow allow the characters' chemistry--and the physical comedy--to take center stage. (c) Copyright 2013. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2014
Mr. Wuffles!
 David Wiesner
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780618756612 Cat Mr. Wuffles toys with a tiny spaceship. Inside, the little green creatures regroup. Helped by a ladybug, they flee to the space under a radiator, which harbors a thriving insect civilization. Friendship ensues, food and technology are shared, repairs are made, and the cat is foiled. This exemplary almost-wordless book incorporates the delights of Borrowers-style innovations, quintessential cat behavior, and Wiesner's exquisite art. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2013
This Is Not My Hat
 Jon Klassen
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. Klassen combines spare text and art to deliver no small measure of laughs in another darkly comic haberdashery whodunit. While not a sequel to I Want My Hat Back (2011), the story does include a hat, a thief (a little fish) and a wronged party (a big fish). This time, first-person narration follows the thief, whose ego far outstrips his size as he underestimates the big fish's tracking abilities. Meanwhile, much of the art follows the big fish on his hunt, creating a pleasing counterpoint with the text. For example, a page reading "he probably won't notice that it's gone" shows not the thieving piscine narrator but the big fish looking up toward the top of his own bare head; he clearly has noticed that his hat is gone, and the chase is on! Sublime book design exploits the landscape format, with dogged movement from left to right across the double-page spreads. This culminates in a page reading "I knew I was going to make it," as the little fish disappears on the recto into plants evocative of Leo Lionni's setting in Swimmy (1963), while a narrow-eyed big fish enters the verso. The little fish is clearly doomed--a fact coyly confirmed by wordless page turns revealing the big fish swimming away, now from right to left, hat firmly on head. Hats off! (Picture book. 4-8)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
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2012
A Ball for Daisy
Book JacketImage by: Amazon   Chris Raschka
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780375858611 In this wordless story, dog Daisy and her little-girl owner play catch. All goes well until another dog, joining in play, pops Daisy's big red ball. Raschka communicates so much through Daisy's posture, varying the line to echo her emotions. Background washes also reflect Daisy's mood, from bright yellows to somber browns. A satisfying story noteworthy both for its artistry and child appeal. (c) Copyright 2012. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2011
A Sick Day for Amos McGee
Book Jacket   Philip C. Stead
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9781596434028 Every day kindly zookeeper Amos McGee plays chess with the elephant, keeps the penguin company, reads stories to the owl, etc. When Amos stays home one day, his friends have just the right medicine: they make time to visit their good friend. The attentively detailed pencil and woodblock illustrations reveal character and enhance the cozy mood of the gentle text. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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2010
The Lion the Mouse
 Jerry Pinkney
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2009
The House in the Night
 Susan Marie Swansonk
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780618862443 Here is the key to the house. In the house burns a light." So begins a soothing bedtime verse that ends with a child tucked in bed, bathed by the light of the moon. The quiet patterned text is accompanied by dramatic black-and-white scratchboard illustrations with just enough gold touches to fill the pages with gentle light. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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2008
The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Book Jacket   Brian Selznick
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. From Selznick's ever-generative mind comes a uniquely inventive story told in text, sequential art and period photographs and film. Orphaned Hugo survives secretly in a Parisian train station (circa 1930). Obsessed with reconstructing a broken automaton, Hugo is convinced that it will write a message from his father that will save his life. Caught stealing small mechanical repair parts from the station's toy shop, Hugo's life intersects with the elderly shop owner and his goddaughter, Isabelle. The children are drawn together in solving the linked mysteries of the automaton and the identity of the artist, illusionist and pioneer filmmaker, Georges Mli's, long believed dead. Discovering that Isabelle's godfather is Mli's, the two resurrect his films, his reputation and assure Hugo's future. Opening with cinematic immediacy, a series of drawings immerses readers in Hugo's mysterious world. Exquisitely chosen art sequences are sometimes stopped moments, sometimes moments of intense action and emotion. The book, an homage to early filmmakers as dreammakers, is elegantly designed to resemble the flickering experience of silent film melodramas. Fade to black and cue the applause! (notes, film credits) (Fiction. 9-12) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780439813785 Over a sequence of twenty-one double-page wordless, illustrated spreads, a story begins. The tale that follows is a lively one, involving the dogged Hugo, his ally Isabelle, an automaton that can draw pictures, and a stage magician turned filmmaker. The interplay between the illustrations and text is complete genius, and themes of secrets, dreams, and invention play lightly but resonantly throughout. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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2007
Flotsam
Book Jacket   David Wiesner
 
2006
The Hello, Goodbye Window
 Norton Juster
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780786809141 In Juster's paean to loving grandparents, the young narrator relates the comforting routines she shares with her grandparents when she visits. The familial love that is Juster's subtext finds overt expression, spectacularly, in Raschka's lush mixed-media illustrations set off perfectly by white space. A varied layout, balancing exterior and interior landscapes with smaller character vignettes, helps sustain the book's energy. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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2005
Kittens First Full Moon
 Kevin Henkes
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780060588298 The black-and-white forms in this sweet story about a kitten who thinks the full moon is a bowl of milk are larger and more solid-looking than Henkes's usual work. The kitten, whose white fur glows against the charcoal-gray sky, is sprightly and expressive as she fails repeatedly (""Poor Kitten!"") to get at that milk. The rhymthic, action-oriented text is just right for small children. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780062417107 This is a successful board-book edition of Henkes's Caldecott Awardwinning story about a kitten who thinks the full moon is a bowl of milk. The smaller trim size doesn't lessen the illustrations' impact: Kitten is sprightly and expressive as she fails repeatedly ("Poor Kitten!") to get at that milk. The rhymthic, action-oriented (and unabridged) text is just right for small children. (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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2004
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers
Book Jacket   Mordicai Gerstein
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780761328681 Is this another September 11 book? No--and yes. In 1974, Philippe Petit, the French street performer and high-wire walker, couldn't resist the temptation to dance between the twin towers of the World Trade Center. Gerstein pulls the reader into the story with a conversational style extended by playful pen and paint illustrations. Like Petit, Gerstein conceals much careful planning behind an obvious enjoyment of his subject. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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2003
My Friend Rabbit
Book Jacket   Eric Rohmann
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780761324201 When narrator Mouse?s well-meaning but trouble-prone friend Rabbit gets Mouse?s airplane stuck in a tree, his solution (a precarious tower of reluctant animals that almost reaches the airplane) causes even more problems. The book is visually exciting--Rohmann?s hand-colored relief prints make fresh and innovative use of picture book space--and broadly humorous. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. 9780761324201 Best known for fluid, superbly realistic oil paintings, Rohmann (Prairie Train, 1999, etc) switches to thick-lined colored woodcuts and a simpler pictorial style for this nearly wordless, engagingly wacky episode. After carelessly throwing little Mouse's airplane up into a tree, Rabbit finds a unique way to reach it. ("Not to worry, Mouse. I've got an idea!") Industrious, if not too practical, he drags in a reluctant bear, a crocodile, a purple hippo, and other animals, then stacks them atop a wobbly-legged elephant. Great is the inevitable fall thereof, but Mouse and airplane are reunited, and Mouse, being a true friend, swoops down to rescue Rabbit from the now-annoyed menagerie. Rohmann uses wordless, and sometimes even empty, frames to great comic effect, allowing huge animals to make sudden entrances from the side-or from above, and artfully capturing the expressions on their faces. Young readers and pre-readers will chortle at the silliness of it all while enjoying the sometimes-demanding friendship between these disparately sized chums. (Picture book. 4-7)
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2002
The Three Pigs
 David Wiesner
Kirkus Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission. 9780618007011 With this inventive retelling, Caldecott Medalist Wiesner (Tuesday, 1991) plays with literary conventions in a manner not seen since Scieszka?s The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales (1993). The story begins with a traditional approach in both language and illustrations, but when the wolf huffs and puffs, he not only blows down the pigs? wood and straw houses, but also blows the pigs right out of the story and into a parallel story structure. The three pigs (illustrated in their new world in a more three-dimensional style and with speech balloons) take off on a postmodern adventure via a paper airplane folded from the discarded pages of the traditional tale. They sail through several spreads of white space and crash-land in a surreal world of picture-book pages, where they befriend the cat from ?Hey, Diddle Diddle? and a charming dragon that needs to escape with his cherished golden rose from a pursuing prince. The pigs, cat, and dragon pick up the pages of the original story and return to that flat, conventional world, concluding with a satisfying bowl of dragon-breath-broiled soup in their safe, sturdy brick house. The pigs have braved the new world and returned with their treasure: the cat for company and fiddle music, the dragon?s golden rose for beauty, and the dragon himself for warmth and protection from the wolf, who is glimpsed through the window, sitting powerlessly in the distance. On the last few pages, the final words of the text break apart, sending letters drifting down into the illustrations to show us that once we have ventured out into the wider world, our stories never stay the same. (Picture book. 5-9)
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780618007011 In this postmodern interpretation, the style of the artwork shifts back and forth a few times, as Wiesner explores different realities within a book's pages. The story begins by following the familiar pattern, but the art and dialogue balloons tell another tale: the pigs actually step out of the panel illustrations without being eaten and the perplexed wolf remains behind. There's a lot going on here, but once you get your bearings, this is a fantastic journey told with a light touch. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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2001
So You Want to be President
 David Small
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780399234071 The presidential faces on Mount Rushmore are depicted in a jovial cartoon style on the cover--an encouraging invitation to the witty observations within. Arranging historical tidbits in an attractive buffet, this well-timed book offers anecdotes both cautionary and guaranteed to attract attention and arouse interest. Appended are brief biographical sketches of the presidents and a short bibliography. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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2000
Joseph Had a Little Overcoat
Book Jacket   Simms Taback
Horn Book (c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. 9780670878550 In this newly illustrated adaptation of a Yiddish folk song, die-cuts help tell the story of resourceful Joseph, a farmer/tailor, who recycles his worn overcoat into ever-smaller items. A mixture of painting and collage create a somewhat surreal but delightful effect; details in the art make this a pageant of pre-WWII Jewish-Polish life. Clever, humorous, visually engrossing, poignant, this tribute to a vanished way of life is worth holding on to. Reviewed by: mvp (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
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