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Books for Youth
By Mara Rockliff
On brilliantly illustrated pages full of rococo details and beautifully calligraphed text, Rockliff tells the story of how Benjamin Franklin debunked Dr. Mesmer’s magical cure-all. As scientific innovation swept France in the eighteenth century, Mesmer decided to bring his own discovery to the mix
Carte Blanche: Religion and Young Readers
By Michael Cart
The spotlight focus of this issue has set me to thinking about religion and its place in literature for young readers. Though I devoted two of these columns (2009 and 2012) to religion as being the last taboo in young adult literature, the fact is that the subject has been a staple of children’s literature for centuries, at least since the days of the Puritans and the 1672 publication of James Janeway’s cheery (!)
A Token for Children, Being an Exact Account of the Conversion, Holy and Exemplary Lives, and Joyful Deaths of Several Young Children (the joyful death of tots was a big deal among the Puritans).
Read-alikes: Prayers for the Youngest
By Ilene Cooper
It’s never too early to start teaching children about gratitude and empathy. One way to do this is through the use of blessings and prayers, which help children think about families—their own and those in the larger world. The books below cover a wide range of religions and cultures. The simple words and child-friendly illustrations work as life reminders of faith and love.
Top 10 Religion Reference Sources: 2014
By Rebecca Vnuk
Our first top 10 made up of religion reference titles encompasses subjects ranging from peace and the Buddha to the violence that often erupts from religious controversies. The titles selected were reviewed in
Booklist between November 2012 and November 2014. The Columbia Sourcebook of Mormons in the United States. Ed. by Terryl L. Givens and Reid L. Neilson. 2014. Columbia Univ., $80 (9780231149426).
Top 10 Religion and Spirituality Books for Youth: 2014
By Ilene Cooper
This year’s crop of standouts covers a wide range of books that deal with both the lighter and darker sides of religion and spirituality. They were reviewed in
Booklist between November 15, 2013, and November 1, 2014. By Kelly Cunnane. Illus. by Hoda Hadadi. 2013. Random/Schwartz & Wade, $17.99 (9780375870347). K–Gr. 3. Deep in the Sahara.
Great Reads: Musicians Tell All
By Donna Seaman
Musicians’ memoirs are irresistible. Most musicians heed the call early in life, and those who have achieved memoir-worthy fame have experienced many highs and lows, the basic ingredients for a great read. Music is a collaborative art, and musicians’ relationships tend to be volatile as they cope with mysteries of creativity and the pressure to succeed commercially. Extended tours erode love and domesticity while placing extreme demands on friendship and engendering wild and self-destructive behavior.