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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Review of the Day: Gone Crazy in Alabama by Rita Williams-Garcia


Gone Crazy in Alabama By Rita Williams-Garcia Amistad (an imprint of Harper Collins) $16.99 ISBN: 978-0062215871 Ages 9-12 On shelves now. I’m a conceited enough children’s librarian that I like it when a book wins me over. I don’t want them to make it easy for me. When I sit down to read something I […]

Review of the Day: The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz


The Hired Girl By Laura Amy Schlitz Candlewick Press $17.99 ISBN: 978-0763678180 Ages 12 and up Bildungsroman. Definition: “A novel dealing with one person’s formative years or spiritual education.” A certain strain of English major quivers at the very term. Get enough Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man shoved down your gullet and […]

Review of the Day: My Near-Death Adventures by Alison DeCamp


My Near-Death Adventures (99% True) By Alison DeCamp Crown Books for Young Readers (an imprint of Random House) $16.99 ISBN: 978-0-385-39044-6 Ages 9-12 On shelves now Children’s historical fiction novels often divide up one of two ways. In the first category you have your important moments in history. In such books our heroes run about […]

Review of the Day: The War That Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley


The War That Saved My Life By Kimberly Brubaker Bradley Dial Books for Young Readers (an imprint of Penguin) $16.99 ISBN: 9780803740815 Ages 9-12 On shelves now. As a child I was what one might call a selective reader. Selective in that I studiously avoided any and all works of fiction that might conceivably be […]

Historical Accuracy in Illustration: Shifting Standards or Stubborn Certainties?

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There’s been a lot of talk about accuracy in children’s nonfiction recently (which is just a fancy way of saying that there’s been a lot of talk on this particular blog).  Everything from invented dialogue to series that are nonfiction-ish.  One element we haven’t discussed in any way, shape, or form though is the notion […]

Review of the Day: Caminar by Skila Brown


Caminar By Skila Brown Candlewick Press $15.99 ISBN: 978-0763665166 Ages 9-12 On shelves now Survivor’s guilt. Not the most common theme in children’s books these days. Not unheard of certainly, but it definitely doesn’t crop up as often as, say, stories about cupcakes or plucky orphans that have to defeat evil wizards. Serious works of […]

Review of the Day: The Madman of Piney Woods by Christopher Paul Curtis


The Madman of Piney Woods By Christopher Paul Curtis Scholastic ISBN: 978-0-545-63376-5 $16.99 Ages 9-12 On shelves September 30th No author hits it out of the park every time. No matter how talented or clever a writer might be, if their heart isn’t in a project it shows. In the case of Christopher Paul Curtis, […]

Review of the Day: West of the Moon by Margi Preus


West of the Moon By Margi Preus Amulet Books (an imprint of Abrams) $16.95 ISBN: 978-1-4197-0896-1 Ages 10 and up On shelves now. These are dark times for children’s literature. Pick up a book for the 9-12 year-old set and you just don’t know what you’re going to find. Whether it’s the murderous foliage of […]

Review of the Day: Curiosity by Gary Blackwood


Curiosity By Gary Blackwood Dial (an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group) $16.99 ISBN: 978-0-8037-3924-6 Ages 9-12 On shelves April 10th Blackwood’s back, baby! And not a minute too soon. Back in 1998, the author released The Shakespeare Stealer which would soon thereafter become his best-known work. A clever blending of historical fiction and adventure, […]

Review of the Day: Written in Stone by Rosanne Parry


Written in Stone By Rosanne Parry Random House $16.99 ISBN: 978-0-375-86971-6 Ages 9-12 On shelves now Finding books of historical fiction for kids about Native Americans is an oddly limited proposition. Basically, it boils down to Pilgrims, the Trail of Tears, the occasional 1900s storyline (thank God for Louise Erdrich), and . . . yeah, […]

Review of the Day – Africa Is My Home: A Child of the Amistad by Monica Edinger


Africa Is My Home: A Child of the Amistad By Monica Edinger Illustrated by Robert Byrd Candlewick Press $17.99 ISBN: 978-0-7636-5038-4 Ages 9-12 On shelves October 8th It’s no secret that nonfiction in children’s literature is the buzzword of the day. Thanks to the rise of interest in the Core Curriculum State Standards, kids are […]

Review of the Day: Rifka Takes a Bow by Betty Rosenberg Perlov


Rifka Takes a Bow By Betty Rosenberg Perlov Illustrated by Cosei Kawa Kar-Ben Publishing (a division of Lerner) $17.95 ISBN: 978-0-7613-8127-3 Ages 4-8 On shelves now. History is written by the winners, they say. I’m going to lump personal history into that too. As far as I can tell, if you live long enough to […]

Review of the Day: A Song for Bijou by Josh Farrar


A Song for Bijou By Josh Farrar Walker Books for Young Readers (an imprint of Bloomsbury) $16.99 ISBN: 978-0-8027-3394-8 Ages 9-12 On shelves now Now let us discuss the middle school book. It is, arguably, the most forgotten book of its kind on a library and/or bookstore shelf. The book written for your average everyday […]

Review of the Day: A Girl Called Problem by Katie Quirk


A Girl Called Problem By Katie Quirk Eerdmans Books for Young Readers $8.00 ISBN: 97800-8028-5404-9 Ages 9-12 On shelves now. Who says that mystery novels for kids all have to include the same tropes and settings? I tell you, half the time when a kid comes up to a reference desk asking for a mystery […]

Review of the Day: One Came Home by Amy Timberlake


One Came Home By Amy Timberlake $16.99 ISBN: 978-0-375-86925-9 Ages 10 and up On shelves now I like children’s books that sock you in the gut. Not the books that telegraph their hits or do the old one-two punch you can see coming from a mile away. No way, man, I’m talking about the books […]