Review: In the Shadow of the Sun

North Korea has been in the news a lot lately, and although I’d rather not think about why, my kids have questions: Who are these people, and why are they targeting us? In the Shadow of the Sun by Anne Sibley O’Brien, an action-packed, middle-grade novel, offers a fascinating glimpse into the closed-off culture of North Korea, […]

Book review: Younger fantasy books with strong girls

I love a good fantasy (or speculative fiction). Transport me to another realm and I don’t wanna come back. Well, unless it’s a dystopian world. Then where we are now doesn’t look so bad. Usually. So imagine my delight in finding a batch of recent fantasy books for kids featuring strong female leads. I plan […]

Book review: The Bitch Is Back

Great title, right? Perfect for on A Day Without a Woman, when women around the country are marching, striking, and celebrating women’s work and accomplishments (by showing what happens if we step away, Lysistrata-style). I’m home with a sick kid today, so I’m celebrating women by wearing red (and my 1 Billion Rising t-shirt) and […]

Book review: The Little Linebacker

As part of Multicultural Children’s Book Day I received the uplifting softcover picture book The Little Linebacker: A Story of Determination by Stephen Tulloch and Maria Dismondy, illustrated by Heather Heyworth. Sure to appeal to young football (or other sport) fans, The Little Linebacker is the story of young Stephen Tulloch, who grows up to be a […]

Book review: Shirley Jackson, A Rather Haunted Life

I just finished Ruth Franklin’s marvelous biography Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life, which would make a great gift for writer-mamas. Best known for her short story “The Lottery,” Jackson wrote six novels–one of which was nominated for a National Book Award and another made into a movie–five story collections, four children’s books, and two […]