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August 10, 2016


Every month, TAB editor Kristin will be sharing her thoughts on five titles from our… Read More

June 1, 2016

The Year of Billy Miller

I read quite a lot of books—it’s practically impossible not to read while working at Scholastic! One of my very favorite books this year happens to also be by one of my very favorite authors: The Year of Billy Miller by Kevin Henkes.

Celebrated for his pitch-perfect picture books (starring some memorable mice), Henkes is just as brilliant when writing about characters without tails. In his latest chapter book, we follow seven-year-old Billy as he goes through second grade, from his first day of school all the way to his end-of-year presentation.

It’s not often that we’re presented with a sincere portrayal of what a second grade boy is like—they can’t all be ace detectives, can they?—and Billy Miller is a totally, poignantly, wonderfully ordinary boy.

Billy’s frustration with his almost ruined diorama (three-year-old sister + glitter = disaster!), his doubt about whether or not to keep calling his dad “Papa” (does it sound too babyish?), and his joy when his teacher tells him he’s smart are moments that are wholly relatable and yet totally unique to Billy.

Kevin Henkes has always had a gift for capturing the inner lives of children and he doesn’t skip a beat with Billy. So keep an eye out for The Year of Billy Miller in our flyers and on our website, and meet one of the best new characters of the year!


Bio about Author: Catherine Alexander is a managing editor of online copy at Scholastic Reading Club. She previously worked at Sesame Workshop. So yes, she has in fact met Big Bird.

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October 24, 2013