Books by Arnold Adoff

ROOTS AND BLUES by Arnold Adoff
FICTION
Released: Jan. 3, 2011

"An incandescent, important work. (Poetry. 8 & up)"
Adoff creates a moving meditation on the roots of American blues. Read full book review >
VIRGINIA HAMILTON by Arnold Adoff
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 1, 2010

"By any standards Hamilton was an unusually clear thinker and brilliant wordsmith. Here a lesser-known facet of her glittering reputation gets a fresh shine."
Before she died, Hamilton (1934-2002), likely the most honored writer for young people ever, also had a thing or two to tell adult audiences about her art, craft, milieu and African-American identity. Read full book review >
BLACK IS BROWN IS TAN by Arnold Adoff
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 2002

"As the number of interracial families goes up but their representation in picture books remains vanishingly slight, this fresh rendition still makes a cogent statement. (Picture book/poetry. 4-7)"
The author and illustrator of this groundbreaking 1973 portrait of an interracial family (Adoff and his wife, the late Virginia Hamilton, were the models) reunite for this updated overhaul. Read full book review >
DARING DOG AND CAPTAIN CAT by Arnold Adoff
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2001

"Still, this will resonate with thoughtful readers who understand that, when Adoff writes of dreams and secret identities, he's not just referring to pets. (Picture book. 6-8)"
The idea that household pets lead more exciting lives at night than we might imagine, a popular picture book premise, gets a stylish—maybe too stylish—workout here. Read full book review >
THE RETURN OF REX AND ETHEL by Arnold Adoff
ANIMALS
Released: April 1, 2000

"A useful book for when a pet (or a person) dies, especially for those who feel that taking some sort of positive action has a healing effect. (Picture book. 5-8)"
A touching story about two girls, two dogs, and the way in which the girls deal with the deaths of their beloved pets. Read full book review >
TOUCH THE POEM by Arnold Adoff
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 2000

"The interplay of words and images expresses the playfulness and multiplicity of poetry itself, creating a rich effect that will draw readers back again and again. (Picture book/poetry. 4-9)"
There is poetry in the art and in the juxtaposition of art and text, as well as in the words themselves in this second ingenious poetry collection by Adoff and Desimini (Love Letters, 1997, etc.). Read full book review >
THE BASKET COUNTS by Arnold Adoff
LOVE LETTERS by Arnold Adoff
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 1, 1997

"Every spread stands alone, a vignette of immeasurable emotion. (Picture book/poetry. 6-10)"
A collection of love poems spoken in the distinct voice of a sibling, schoolmate, student, playmate, secret admirer, and even the self. Read full book review >
SLOW DANCE HEARTBREAK BLUES by Arnold Adoff
CHILDREN'S
Released: Aug. 1, 1995

"Each line is laden with empathy; the pieces are good for a browse, but lack the depth or emotional resonance to give them bite. (b&w illustrations, not seen) (Poetry. 10-14)"
In a collection of verse, Adoff (In for Winter, Out for Spring, 1991, etc.) addresses the early teen years, ``this/time/from/trolls/to/tampax.'' He speaks to the generation that goes to school with metal detectors, worries about the whales, witnesses casual drug use, and is also anxious about nose picking and being ``t o o y o u n g.'' Poems about kissing, ``zit monsters,'' junk food, and ``the way the sun/glints off your lower brace'' reflect typical adolescent preoccupations with perfect love and imperfect bodies. Read full book review >