BELLA'S BEST OF ALL by Jamie Harper
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Cute, but a miss nevertheless. (Picture book. 2-4)"
A little mouse compares her things to her mother's, and all but one come up short. Read full book review >
THE ITSY BITSY BUNNY by Jeffrey Burton
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Leave the hopping to Peter Cottontail and sing the original song instead. (Board book. 1-3)"
An Easter-themed board-book parody of the traditional nursery rhyme. Read full book review >

TO THE STARS! by Carmella Van Vleet
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"This welcome addition to the field of female fliers will be informative as well as inspirational for girls. (Picture book/biography. 5-9)"
This biography of Kathy Sullivan joins the ranks of picture books about women who have taken to the air. Read full book review >
KENYA'S ART by Linda Trice
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"The emphasis on art as something that's not useful and on holding on to items by branding them as art makes this one to miss. (Picture book. 4-8)"
A broken-toy purge turns into an art-making session in this didactic look at recycling and reuse. Read full book review >
BUNNY DREAMS by Peter McCarty
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Arbitrary and lacking closure, this is more like a real dream than a sleepy-time tale. (Picture book. 4-7)"
Rabbits have group dreams—very peculiar ones. Read full book review >

HOP by Jorey Hurley
by Jorey Hurley, illustrated by Jorey Hurley
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Minimal text yields maximum effect in this book of nonfiction for the very youngest children. (Informational picture book. 2-5)"
Children who have seen bunnies frolic in their backyards, scamper across the lawn of a park, or roam in fields in their imaginations will find Hurley's latest charming and informative in equal measure. Read full book review >
SILLY WONDERFUL YOU by Sherri Duskey Rinker
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"It's sweet, but it lacks the freshness that would make it stand out. (Picture book. 2-4) "
A mother's rhymes enumerate the many, varied (sometimes bewildering, sometimes beatific) ways her toddler tot has altered her life. Read full book review >
WORM LOVES WORM by J.J. Austrian
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"As in life, love conquers all. (Picture book. 3-8)"
Austrian and Curato turn the simple wedding of two worms into a three-ring circus that slyly turns the whole controversy over same-sex versus heterosexual marriage on its head. Read full book review >
SHH! BEARS SLEEPING by David Martin
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Short stanzas (with only a few rhythmic missteps) convey the languorous feeling of a bear's slumber. (Informational picture book. 3-6)"
The simplest of narratives, conveyed in lulling rhymes, follows a mother black bear and her two cubs throughout the year. Read full book review >
NICE WORK, FRANKLIN! by Suzanne Tripp Jurmain
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A solid, immensely readable introduction to a complex man, in a complex time of history. (bibliography) (Picture book/biography. 5-9)"
The 32nd president faced many challenges, including enduring and overcoming a difficult illness and helping to cure an economic sickness of the nation. Read full book review >
FREEDOM IN CONGO SQUARE by Carole Boston Weatherford
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Weatherford and Christie dazzlingly salute African-Americans' drive to preserve their dignity and pride. (foreword, glossary, author's note) (Picture book. 5-9)"
Count down the days until Sunday, a day for slaves in New Orleans to gather together and remember their African heritage. Read full book review >
THE PERFECT TREE by Chloe Bonfield
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A gorgeous reminder that the natural world is perfect and worthy of notice. (Picture book. 4-8)"
In a natural-world version of Leo Tolstoy's short story "The Three Questions," a boy goes in search of the perfect tree to chop for firewood and finds much more. 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 >