Children's Book Reviews (page 3214)

SCARECROW! by Valerie Littlewood
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"Not as well crafted and informative as Giblin's The Scarecrow Book (1980, o.p.), but a useful visual resource. (Nonfiction. 8-12)"
A survey of devices (including real people) that have been used to scare away birds (and some other pests): The book's a little repetitious and miscellaneous and not very well organized, but does include a substantial array of interesting facts about ``homemade figures...used around the world to protect precious crops for over three thousand years.'' Best are the detailed crosshatched drawings and more formal paintings depicting a great variety of these appealing or scary figures. Read full book review >
THE PRINCESS AND THE PEA by Hans Christian Andersen
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"Not the only edition to have, of course, but good fun. (Picture book. 5-8)"
The simple retelling of this brief favorite adheres closely to the original, but most of the fun here is in Stevenson's exuberant illustrations of her rabbit royalty. Read full book review >

ABUELITA'S PARADISE by Carmen Santiago Nodar
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"Also available in Spanish. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Mourning her grandma (Abuelita), Marita sits in the rocker she wanted her to have, wraps herself in Abuelita's old blanket (inscribed ``para°so''), and remembers her stories about her island paradise: rural Puerto Rico. Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"Plenty of unsubtle shivers. (Short Stories/Fiction. 10-13)"
A snowed-in, freezing family almost makes the mistake of climbing into the Black Van that stops for them...a locket with an old photograph becomes a slow, deadly trap...a substitute teacher returns to his hometown after many years to take revenge on the children of his tormentors...a seemingly ramshackle house proves to be a gateway to past and future. Read full book review >
A PEDDLER'S DREAM by Janice Shefelman
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"The straightforward, well- researched story is attractively illustrated in pen and watercolor with a wealth of period details. (Picture book. 7-10)"
A classic immigrant success story with a protagonist more unusual in children's literature than in real life: a Lebanese American. Read full book review >

THE TAPESTRY CATS by Ann Turnbull
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"A couple of gutters are unfortunately placed; otherwise, an attractive setting for an unusually amiable tale, told with a pleasing poetic lilt. (Picture book. 4-8)"
The princess has no playmates; worse, her mother answers every question for her. Read full book review >
LITTLE EIGHT JOHN by Jan Wahl
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"An amusing but flawed rendition of this old-fashioned cautionary tale. (Folklore/Picture book. 6-8)"
When Little Eight John's mother warns that misfortune will follow if he kicks the toad frogs, sits backwards on a chair, or counts his teeth, it only spurs him on; later, he laughs gleefully when the baby gets colic, the cow stops giving milk, and his family goes broke. Read full book review >
THE GHOST FAMILY MEETS ITS MATCH by Nicole  Rubel
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"Good fun, and sure to appeal. (Picture book. 4-8)"
In the 1880's, an explorer sets out for Africa; he never returns, and the Ghost family (Ivy, Igor, their parents and cat) moves in. Read full book review >
THE WIZARD IN THE WOODS by Jean Ure
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"Still, readers who appreciate the loopholes that make magic so difficult may find that humor carries the day, helped by Anstey's comic b&w spot illustrations. (Fiction. 8-10)"
Ben-Muzzy, inept apprentice wizard, is hopelessly tangled up by the spell-making words that the Grand High Wizard forces into his head. Read full book review >
SINCE 1920 by Alexandra Wallner
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"Unexceptional but attractive and useful—the final events take the story beyond the usual The Little House conclusion. (Picture book. 4-8)"
The story of what's happened to one neighborhood since a first couple moved out from the city 70+ years ago in order to build a new house on a piece of farm land . Read full book review >
THE FORTUNE-TELLERS by Lloyd Alexander
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"A winning tale, superlatively presented. (Picture book. 4-10)"
When the poor, hard-working young carpenter seeks comfort from a fortuneteller, the old man hoodwinks him with double talk: "Rich you will surely be...[if] you earn large sums of money." Read full book review >
THE MAN WHO LIT THE STARS by Claude Clément
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"The message seems a little insistent, especially after three books; still, this is the best so far, and the image is compellingly presented, especially in the illustrations. (Picture book. 5-9)"
From the author of The Painter and the Wild Swans (1986) and The Voice of the Wood (1989), a third fable about creativity and the imagination, less complex but equally dominated by symbols. 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 >