INCREDIBLE PLANTS by Barbara Taylor
NATURE
Released: May 14, 1997

"Think of the book as science for the eyes, a companion volume to more competent texts that forge links between what readers are looking at and what they should be seeing. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 8-13)"
Glossily photographed, highly detailed, three-dimensional models seem to leap out at readers in this entry in the Inside Guide series. Read full book review >
ELLA ENCHANTED by Gail Carson Levine
FANTASY
Released: May 11, 1997

"This refreshing take on one of the world's most popular fairy tales preserves the spirit of the original but adds plenty of humorous twists and a spunky, intelligent female lead. (Fiction/folklore. 11-13)"
Levine plays her debut expansion of the Cinderella story as a straight—well, nearly straight—romance, sloughing off its layers of Freudian symbolism and creating a lively, stubborn heroine to keep the action tumbling along. Read full book review >

SEEDFOLKS by Paul Fleischman
Released: May 11, 1997

"It's a worthy idea, accompanied by Pedersen's chapter-heading black-and-white portraits, providing advance information about the participants' races and, here and there, ages. (Fiction. 9-11)"
Using the multiple voices that made Bull Run (1995) so absorbing, Fleischman takes readers to a modern inner-city neighborhood and a different sort of battle, as bit by bit the handful of lima beans an immigrant child plants in an empty lot blossoms into a community garden, tended by a notably diverse group of local residents. Read full book review >
MISSISSIPPI MUD by Ann Turner
FICTION
Released: May 11, 1997

"The vivid writing is ideal for savoring at story hours; the appealing illustrations—sometimes intrusively literal, more often a poetic match to the text—would also work well in a group setting. (Picture book. 8-10)"
Turner (Shaker Hearts, 1997, etc.) offers a splendid tale of the pioneering spirit. Read full book review >
WHO IS BEN? by Charlotte Zolotow
Released: May 11, 1997

"In the same way that the text anchors larger issues to a child's musings, the illustrations secure the universe-sized 'big picture' to a boy's snug bedroom. (Picture book. 5-9)"
From the moment readers see Ben peering at them from the title page of this philosophical investigation, they'll know they're in for a new treat from Zolotow (When the Wind Stops, 1995, etc.). Read full book review >

THE BOY WHO ATE WORDS by Thierry Dedieu
FICTION
Released: May 1, 1997

"The illustrations are perfectly composed scrawls, poster-paint bold, and big. (Picture book. 5-10)"
An idiosyncratic tale that creates a gastronomical playground from mere words. Read full book review >
I DREAM OF MURDER by Catherine Dexter
BEDTIME BOOK
Released: May 1, 1997

"Fans of Joan Lowery Nixon's suspense novels will relish this pulse-pounder. (Fiction. 10-12)"
A deranged killer stalks two teenagers in this unvarnished thriller from Dexter (Alien Game, 1995, etc.). Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY
Released: May 1, 1997

"In this affectionate, animated biography, Warner comes across as a fascinating individual; her story will enchant The Boxcar Children's legions of fans. (b&w photos and illustrations, bibliography, index) (Biography. 7-12)"
Warner was a reader and a writer from childhood on. Read full book review >
JOURNEY TO NOWHERE by Mary Jane Auch
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 1, 1997

"From Auch (Eggs Mark the Spot, 1996, etc.), good historical details and a rattling good adventure. (Fiction. 10-12)"
In 1815, Mem's father decides that the family will sell their Connecticut farm and nearly everything else they own to load up a wagon and make the long and hazardous trek to a new home in the Genesee Country of upstate New York. Read full book review >
THE BUTTERFLY LION by Michael Morpurgo
ANIMALS
Released: May 1, 1997

"This dreamlike story is suffused with a man's lifelong love for a rare, gentle animal friend. (Fiction. 9-12)"
A runaway schoolboy finds a magnificent monument to a magnificent animal in this ghost story, at once marvelous and matter-of-fact, from Morpurgo (Robin of Sherwood, 1996, etc.). Read full book review >
Released: May 1, 1997

"As usual, her story is told with grace and economy, liberally laced with humor, and brimming with serious feelings as well. (Fiction. 9-13)"
At 13, Alice thinks her life deserves a prize for "most boring"; she can't see anything special or interesting about herself. Read full book review >
THE SECRET BOX by Gayle Pearson
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 1, 1997

"Pearson hasn't forgotten the difficulty of puzzling things out, and the shock and sweetness of seminal experiences. (Short stories. 8-12)"
A handful of consistently extraordinary stories about secrets, ethics, and bewildering affections, featuring characters from Pearson's One Potato, Tu (1992). Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Brad Parks
author of SAY NOTHING
March 7, 2017

In Brad Parks’ new thriller Say Nothing, judge Scott Sampson doesn’t brag about having a perfect life, but the evidence is clear: a prestigious job. A beloved family. On an ordinary Wednesday afternoon, he is about to pick up his six-year-old twins to go swimming when his wife, Alison, texts him that she’ll get the kids from school instead. It’s not until she gets home later that Scott realizes she doesn’t have the children. And she never sent the text. Then the phone rings, and every parent’s most chilling nightmare begins. A man has stolen Sam and Emma. For Scott and Alison, the kidnapper’s call is only the beginning of a twisting, gut-churning ordeal of blackmail, deceit, and terror; a high-profile trial like none the judge or his wife has ever experienced. Their marriage falters. Suspicions and long-buried jealousies rise to the surface. Fractures appear. Lies are told. “The nerve-shredding never lets up for a minute as Parks picks you up by the scruff of the neck, shakes you vigorously, and repeats over and over again till a climax so harrowing that you’ll be shaking with gratitude that it’s finally over,” our critic writes in a starred review. View video >