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mixedmedia

Celebrate Women's History Month!

Rising Above

Any middle school sports lover will take delight in Gregory Zuckerman's “Rising Above: Inspiring Women in Sports.” From Venus and Serena Williams, who grew up in a crime-plagued neighborhood, to World Cup champion Carli Lloyd, who was cut from her youth soccer team, the athletes featured in this book met earth-shaking challenges head on, and through hard work and perseverance, went on to conquer the sports world. Penguin Young Readers; Ages 8-12; $17.99



Bold Women in Black History

“Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History” by Vashti Harrison is a beautifully illustrated book celebrating 40 inspirational African-American women who shaped history. The book highlights both iconic and lesser-known female figures of black history, such as abolitionist Sojourner Truth, pilot Bessie Coleman, chemist Alice Ball, politician Shirley Chisholm, mathematician Katherine Johnson and filmmaker Julie Dash. “Little Leaders” is a must-have for young readers' bookshelves. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers; Ages 8-12; $16.99



— Jenny L. Heinbaugh


Book Reviews

Books for Spring

By Mary Quattlebaum

babies / tots

Twinkle, Twinkle, ABC

Celebrate spring with this exuberant board book that purports to be a “mixed-up, mashed-up melody.” To the tune of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,” tots are encouraged to get up and move. As they work their way through the alphabet, little ones can mimic birds and “TWEET and flap our wings/And bounce as if our feet are springs!” Or they might “stand up tall” as trees or “WHOOSH” like the wind or growl like a bear. The rollicking song spans day to night, and the color palette shifts accordingly, from bright, eye-popping hues – lime, red and blue – to the darker, soothing shades of charcoal, black and light gray in the final snuggle-time spread. This book will have your kids whirling and twirling like the lively characters depicted.


ages 3 – 7

The Gingerbread Man and the Leprechaun Loose at School

That Gingerbread Man sure gets around! In this popular series by Virginia author Laura Murray, the mischievous cookie has run amok at the zoo, on a fire truck and at Christmas. In this new book, he’s hot on the trail of a “wee little man” on a “mess-making spree.” Kids will love the snappy rhymes and vibrant sequential art as they follow the leprechaun from prank to prank, from tipping over tubas in the music room to rearranging books in the library. Finally, the Gingerbread Man sets a trap that wraps the naughty green guy up in toilet paper. For a rousing St. Patrick’s Day, celebrate with green-frosted gingerbread men and a rambunctious read-aloud.


ages 8 and up

Women Who Dared

Pay tribute to the honorees of Women’s History Month in March with this enthralling collection of true tales of 52 daring women around the world. From the Russian cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova to the French balloonist Sophie Blanchard to the American “ace aviator” Bessie Coleman, these women took risks and aimed for adventure when girls were rarely encouraged to do either. Each write-up is full of fascinating insights and facts. For example, Anna Olga Albertina Brown, a late 19th century trapeze artist from Germany, was so renowned for her strength and skill that Edgar Degas painted a picture of her performing. And Johanna July, from Mexico, evolved a humane method to tame wild mustangs and was widely admired for her equine skills.


Mary Quattlebaum is the author of 25 award-winning children’s books, most recently “Hero Dogs,” a National Geographic nonfiction chapter book about amazing animal heroes. Mary is a popular school and conference speaker.maryquattlebaum.com