I SWIM AN OCEAN IN MY SLEEP by Norma Farber
NATURE
Released: March 1, 1997

"There are nice moments in the text as well, but sometimes the perceptions of the author intrude, resulting in a narrative that wavers between the child's point of view and a more sophisticated perspective. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Farber (When It Snowed That Night, 1993, etc.) begins her sleeptime fantasy quietly: ``Night is dark,/Night is deep,/I swim an ocean in my sleep.'' In Savadier's whimsical ink and gouache illustrations, a small boy in red-striped pajamas swims through an imaginative underwater world. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY
Released: March 1, 1997

"Kirby Puckett, the remarkable Alou family, the one-handed pitcher Jim Abbott—will find little here to take home. (Biography. 8-12)"
What could have been a three-run homer ends up a strikeout in this disappointing collective biography of contemporary players, managers, and teams from the collaborators behind The Macmillan Book of Baseball Stories (1993). Read full book review >

POPPLETON by Cynthia Rylant
ANIMALS
Released: March 1, 1997

"Teague's scenes of a small town are charming but have no real story in which to take root, and the book is printed on cardboard-weight stock that all but overwhelms the format. (Fiction. 4-7)"
The first book in a proposed series of easy readers from the usually reliable Rylant (The Bookshop Dog, p. 1055) is an unqualified flop. Read full book review >
MR. PAK BUYS A STORY by Carol Farley
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: March 1, 1997

"A large, casual typeface that resembles hand-lettering adds to the book's attractive design. (Picture book/folkore. 7-10)"
A retelling of a Korean tale (also found, couched in a somewhat more literary style, in Frances Carpenter's Tales of a Korean Grandmother, 1947) about a foolish servant who spends a hundred of his master's gold coins for a spurious story that in truth is little more than a few sentences describing the actions of a stork: ``He steps carefully. Read full book review >
TROUBLE by Jane Kurtz
by Jane Kurtz, illustrated by Durga Bernhard
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: March 1, 1997

"An author's note discusses the story's origins; Bernhard's illustrations provide an enchanting window into the culture and people of Eritrea. (map, glossary) (Picture book/folklore. 3-7)"
From Kurtz (Miro in the Kingdom of the Sun, 1996, etc.), the lively Eritrean story of a young boy with a magnetic attraction to trouble. Read full book review >

LEON AND BOB by Simon James
FICTION
Released: March 1, 1997

"Tidy, but congenial. (Picture book. 3-7)"
Leon is new in town. Read full book review >
ABC YUMMY by Lisa Jahn-Clough
ABC BOOKS
Released: March 1, 1997

"With an exuberant cast of children of various races, this is not the first book to combine the alphabet, alliteration, and food, but it's certainly among the most appealing. (Picture book. 3-7)"
A cheerful alphabet book brimming with good things to eat, from Jahn-Clough (My Happy Birthday Book, 1996, etc.). Read full book review >
TANGLEBIRD by Bernard Lodge
ANIMALS
Released: March 1, 1997

"The lesson about channeling chaos into creativity may be somewhat muted, but manipulated; children will like Tanglebird's triumph over those who once mocked him. (Picture book. 4-6)"
Detailed woodcuts colored in soft pastels add visual interest to this didactic story. Read full book review >
MATILDA THE MOOCHER by Diana Cain Bluthenthal
FICTION
Released: March 1, 1997

"Children faced with moochers of their own will find only a modicum of consolation here. (Picture book. 5-8)"
An odd take on friendship in this brightly illustrated but unsatisfying book. Read full book review >
THE PICTURE THAT MOM DREW by Kathy Mallat
Released: March 1, 1997

"Children will enjoy the surprise of seeing close-up forms, shapes, and textures become a larger whole when the picture is unveiled in the final spread, and learn something about looking at art in the process. (glossary) (Picture book/nonfiction. 4-8)"
While many a beginning concept book focuses solely on colors or shapes, this picture-book collaboration of a newcomer and a veteran introduces young viewers to additional elements of art, including lines, forms, shades, patterns, and textures. Read full book review >
WILLY'S SILLY GRANDMA by Cynthia DeFelice
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: March 1, 1997

"The story is well-told; the message is mixed. (Picture book. 3-7)"
From DeFelice (The Apprenticeship of Lucas Whitaker, 1996, etc.), the story of a boy who dismisses his grandmother's superstitions and belief in magic as ``silly'' until he has to face his own fears in the Big Swamp. Read full book review >
NATURE
Released: March 1, 1997

"Miller mentions in her note are not featured elsewhere in the book in more detail. (glossary) (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-10)"
Miller takes a careful look at a temporary water system—a vernal lake in Alaska whose emergence and disappearance each year has given rise to a unique ecosystem. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Laini Taylor
March 27, 2017

In bestselling YA writer Laini Taylor’s new fantasy novel, Strange the Dreamer, the dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around—and Lazlo Strange, war orphan and junior librarian, has always feared that his dream chose poorly. Since he was five years old he's been obsessed with the mythic lost city of Weep, but it would take someone bolder than he to cross half the world in search of it. Then a stunning opportunity presents itself, in the person of a hero called the Godslayer and a band of legendary warriors, and he has to seize his chance to lose his dream forever. What happened in Weep two hundred years ago to cut it off from the rest of the world? What exactly did the Godslayer slay that went by the name of god? And what is the mysterious problem he now seeks help in solving? “Lovers of intricate worldbuilding and feverish romance will find this enthralling,” our critic writes. View video >