FERRETS by Sylvia A. Johnson
ANIMALS
Released: July 1, 1997

"A section on the black-footed ferret, a wild cousin, is also included. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 7-10)"
These non-rodent relatives of the weasel, badger, and skunk, often the source of controversy over their appropriateness as house pets, are gaining in popularity, next in line to cats and dogs. Read full book review >
ANIMALS
Released: July 1, 1997

"The layout is dramatic, often with white text on black backgrounds, but cluttered: full-color close-ups of snake parts, a border of cartoon animals, boxes of things to do, puzzles, and true or false questions. (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 7-10)"
The dramatic full-color cover illustration of a spitting cobra and hissing rattlesnake will attract browsers to this title, but the information they encounter within may make them feel hoodwinked. Read full book review >

BEANY (NOT BEANHEAD) AND THE MAGIC CRYSTAL by Susan Wojciechowski
CHILDREN'S
Released: July 1, 1997

"Natti's black- and-white illustrations are right on target; readers will use their own magic crystals to wish Beany back again. (Fiction. 6-10)"
Beany—Bernice Lorraine Sherwin-Hendricks, the heroine from Don't Call Me Beanhead (1994)—is back. Read full book review >
THE STORY OF TIME AND CLOCKS by Anita Ganeri
CHILDREN'S
Released: July 1, 1997

"Better books include Brenda Walpole's Time (1995), of equivalent length and reading level, and Franklyn Branley's less colorful but more authoritative Keeping Time (1993). (chronology, glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 8-11)"
This entry in the Signs of the Times series is not equal to Ganeri's The Story of Writing and Printing (1996). Read full book review >
THE LAST PAYBACK by James VanOosting
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 30, 1997

"VanOosting takes a real risk here, but carries it off, thanks to an irrepressible protagonist, a sturdy supporting cast, and a strong, affirmative finish. (Fiction. 10-12)"
VanOosting (Electing J.J., 1990, etc.) takes a refreshingly unsentimental tack in this tale of a 12-year-old who sets out to get the whole story of her twin brother's death, and to avenge it as well. Read full book review >

ANIMALS
Released: June 15, 1997

"The frequent black-and-white wash illustrations display vigorous brushwork, animals blessedly au naturel and a rangy witch festooned with mushrooms. (Fiction. 8-10)"
In theme and tone, this fresh and funny sequel to Tales of the Wicked Witch (1995) recalls another import about perilous acquaintances, Angela Sommer-Bodenburg's My Friend, the Vampire (1984). Read full book review >
HERONS by Frank Staub
by Frank Staub, photographed by Frank Staub
ANIMALS
Released: June 13, 1997

"A note for adults that includes hints for using the book seems self-evident. (map, glossary, index) (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-10)"
Herons are the long-legged, needle-beaked birds that vigilantly comb marshlands for food. Read full book review >
SWANS by Lynn M. Stone
by Lynn M. Stone, photographed by Lynn M. Stone
ANIMALS
Released: June 13, 1997

"Stone includes a note to adults on sharing the book and extending the information within, including suggestions for reading, map exercises, and possible activities designed to further children's interest in these graceful aquatic birds. (map, notes, glossary, index) (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-9)"
This entry in the Early Bird Nature Books series acquaints beginning readers with various aspects of swans in an easily digested format, using full-color photographs to illustrate related vocabulary words and concepts. Read full book review >
ZUCCHINI OUT WEST by Barbara Dana
ADVENTURE
Released: June 11, 1997

"Pleasant black-and-white illustrations add to this charming book, which has a great deal of information for animal-loving and environmentally aware children. (Fiction. 8-10)"
The sequel to Zucchini (1984) finds the ferret, his owner, Billy, and Billy's father and sister driving to Wyoming, where they plan to visit the captive breeding program for the endangered black-footed ferret. Read full book review >
MONET'S GHOST by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
ADVENTURE
Released: June 1, 1997

"Yarbro tosses out many intriguing ideas and dwells on none for long; the playful proposition—that an art-lover can put herself into the paintings, literally as well as figuratively—may lure readers in, but will not hold them. (b&w illustrations) (Fiction. 11-13)"
Monet's Ghost (151 pp.; $17.00; Jun. 1, 1997; 0-689-80732-5): More fantasy from Yarbro (for adults, Writ in Blood, p. 686, etc.), this time about a teenager who transports herself inside Monet's Water Lilies. Read full book review >
LOTTA'S PROGRESS by Norma Johnston
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 1, 1997

Spun off from Johnston's Louisa May (1991), this tale of a German immigrant family's harsh first winter in America not only captures some of the flavor and spirit of Little Women, it also artfully suggests how incidents and people from Alcott's real life ended up in her novels. Read full book review >
HERCULES by Robin Moore
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 1, 1997

"Better to spare readers this version and aim them, instead, at some of the sophisticated picture-book treatments available, or—no surprise- -the D'Aulaires. (b&w illustrations, not seen) (Folklore. 7-10)"
A straightforward chapter-book retelling of some of the myths of Hercules, notable as much for what it skips as for what it includes: Moore relates Hercules's birth (though not why Hera hates him), covers his temper (though not his madness-induced killing of his family), and approximately four of his labors (not twelve), ending with his ascension to constellation status. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >