Until I was an adult, I had not heard of Africa’s history and the historical leaders of the entire continent. Other than the Egyptian’s creation of the pyramid and the history of the Nile’s flooding, I don’t remember entering the continent during my years in my 1980s public schools. Beginning in college, I have worked

Read Post

Fairy Tale Comics, edited by Chris Duffy (First Second, 2013) collects a variety of drawing styles and author’s voices into this anthology of 17 different favorite fairy tales. Most of the tales are retellings that young children will be familiar with. A few are more unfamiliar, coming from traditions other than the Brothers Grimm. This

Read Post

I love the unique style of Tomie dePaola, and I was so sad to hear that this iconic children’s illustrator passed away this year. I read Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland by Tomie dePaola (Holiday House, 1992) two years when my daughter and I were learning Medieval history. In this biographic picture book, dePaola writes

Read Post

Beatrice Nash is an educated, talented, and pleasant woman. But life in 1914 England does not give much credence to those qualities when she has been left orphaned and impoverished at the old maid age of 22 without any marriage prospects. To make matters worse, she must rely on her unfriendly relatives for assistance in finding

Read Post

Ancient Greek and Roman mythology has always fascinated me. First I fell in love with D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths. But then, even as a young teenager, I remember reading Mythology by Edith Hamilton, one of the first “pop culture” books that brought Greek mythology into the main stream for the general reader. It’s easy to

Read Post

I had a delightful holiday season this year, in which I did not (obviously) worry about keeping up with my reviewing blog. Strawberry, aged 3, and Raisin, who recently turned 8, enjoyed a book advent calendar in which we unwrapped a different favorite picture book each day in December leading up to Christmas. This made

Read Post

The Death of Caesar: The Story of History’s Most Famous Assassination by Barry Strauss (Simon & Schuster, March 2015) examines the traditions of the assassination of Julius Caesar, clearing up the myths (such as Shakespeare’s play) from reality. Analyzing such a historic event from 44 B.C. is not easy since eyewitness accounts are few and far

Read Post

Eat, Leo! Eat! by Caroline Adderson and illustrated by Josee Bisaillon (Kids Can Press, 2015) is an homage to Italian pasta and traditional lore. It is the story of a picky eater who loves his grandma’s stories about the Italian pasta she cooks each week at the family dinner. Each week, Nonna continues the story

Read Post

Since my son and I have been learning about Ancient Greece and Greek mythology over the last few weeks, I thought it would be appropriate to revisit some familiar stories. Given my more recent lack of reading time or inclination, I determined not to attempt The Odyssey this year; but I did manage to read

Read Post