THE PAIN AND THE GREAT ONE by Judy Blume
Released: Oct. 1, 1984

"And if anyone can remove the picture-book onus, it's Blume—so this back-to-back confrontation, illustrated in the same waggish spirit, should garner appreciative recognition."
How two jealous siblings feel about one another—starting with a third-grader's gripes about her first-grade brother, the Pain. Read full book review >
THE PHILHARMONIC GETS DRESSED by Karla Kuskin
Released: Sept. 1, 1982

"Great fun, then, that's also an inspired approach to concert-going."
Well may you blink—but this is gloriously for real: on the cover is a woman struggling into a long black dress with an instrument case propped alongside. Read full book review >

THE DAY JIMMY'S BOA ATE THE WASH by Trinka Hakes Noble
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Nov. 28, 1981

"Those who respond to this sort of whipped-up frenzy can trust Kellogg's clever twists to keep the action from flagging."
A chaotic class trip to the farm is pictured with Kellogg's usual delight in disorder and related backwards, as it were, by a child whose report to her mother gets wilder and wilder as it unwinds: " 'Why were [the pigs] eating your lunches?' 'Because we threw their corn at each other, and they didn't have anything else to eat.'...'What was Jimmy's pet boa constrictor doing on the farm?' 'Oh, he brought it to meet all the farm animals, but the chickens didn't like it.'..." Read full book review >
THE MYSTERIOUS TADPOLE by Steven Kellogg
Released: Oct. 1, 1977

"A stock situation, right up to the enormous egg that arrives for Louis' next birthday—but Kellogg's zesty embellishments propel it along."
Kellogg tosses off one fantasy within another, as Alphonse, the tadpole Louis' Scottish uncle sends him for his birthday, develops into something more like a dinosaur than a frog and the authorities refuse to allow Louis to keep his pet in the junior high school swimming pool. Read full book review >
THE TYGER VOYAGE by Richard Adams
Released: Sept. 1, 1976

"There's not a snag or a hint of strain in Adams' old-style verse and tongue-in-cheek decorum, but we found the whole performance as inconsequential as it is impeccable."
Though their spoofy intent doesn't entirely redeem the stultifying preciosity of Bayley's fussy Victorian interiors and surreal landscapes, the paintings do complement Adams' mock-heroic rhymed tale of the human narrator's "tyger" neighbors, Ezekiel and Raphael Dubb. Read full book review >

Released: June 1, 1972

"If Alexander's mother is smart to offer casual sympathy without phoney consolation, Cruz and Viorst accord readers the same respect."
In the spiky spirit of Sunday Morning (1969) but more truly attuned to a child's point of view, Viorst reviews a really aggravating (if not terrible, horrible, and very bad) day in the life of a properly disgruntled kid who wakes up with gum in his hair and goes to bed after enduring lima beans for dinner and kissing on T.V. Read full book review >
UMBRELLA by Taro Yashima
Released: March 1, 1958

"The pictures are full of the city's moods and the child's joy in a rainy day."
Momo longed to carry the blue umbrella and wear the bright red rubber boots she had been given on her third birthday. Read full book review >
ANATOLE by Eve Titus
Kirkus Star
by Eve Titus, illustrated by Paul Galdone
Released: Aug. 1, 1956

"But the circumstances under which he carries out his project—to live up to his social responsibilities—have an unmistakable French savoir faire."
The logical thing for a mouse, especially a French one, to do is to taste cheese—as Anatole does. Read full book review >
A TREE IS NICE by Janice May Udry
Released: June 15, 1956

"Here's your first book for Arbor Day use- a good spring and summer item."
A nursery school approach to a general concept. Read full book review >
BEYOND THE PAWPAW TREES by Palmer Brown
Released: Sept. 1, 1954

"Unhackneyed, this is as colorful as it sounds and much glitters besides the gold."
In a setting that could be the South, Florida or Georgia maybe, here is a fantasy that shimmers like its own sunny surroundings. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >