Press & Reviews

Go to Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer


Cover of Murder, Magic, and What We Wore by Kelly Jones (cover by Sarah Watts)Murder, Magic, and What We Wore
by Kelly Jones
September 19, 2017, Knopf Books for Young Readers


2018 Amelia Bloomer List


School Library Journal, July 2017, starred review
“A cross between Jane Austen dramas and Harriet the Spy, this delightful strong female–led title mixes historical fiction and spy mystery with a touch of magic to produce a story filled with adventure. Jones infuses her female characters with boldness, intelligence, and wit. Refreshing.”

Booklist, July 25, 2017
“A touch of Jane Austen, a dash of adventure, and just a hint of magic make it shine.”

Kirkus, June 15, 2017
“’Women’s work’ is a weapon in this female-centric spy novel set in the Regency era… A great deal of fun, one stitch at a time.”

VOYA, August 2017
“Funny and thrilling. A great choice for those who love Regency romances and adventurous heroines.”

Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, Vol. 71, N. 2, October 2017
“Annis, Millie, and Cassia uncover truths about one another and themselves while sifting the clues of Annis’ father’s murder, standing up for aggrieved womanhood, and doing their bit for England against the threat of Napoleon’s return. More than a clever homage to Jane Austen, this novel plucks characters from history, legend, and contemporary middle-grade and YA Regency novels, dropping Easter eggs right and left for readers to discover on their own before finding their sources cited in the author’s note, which forms a must-read list for fans of the period.”

The Horn Book, November/December 2017, #6
“Secret messages, disguises, code names, and knife fights flit in and out of ballrooms and dressmakers’ shops in this Regency-era adventure…. With only a sprinkling of romance and plenty of girl power, the heroine’s interests prove that bravery and style can go comfortably hand-in-hand.”

The Christian Science Monitor, November 3, 2017
“Charming in a way that feels as sweetly ingenuous as its heroine… Keep a weather eye out for Jones’s sneakily beautiful passages.”


Murder, Magic, and What We Wore blew my bonnet off. Kelly Jones has found a fresh way to share the delights of the magical regency. I truly love this book!” —Caroline Stevermer, coauthor of Sorcery & Cecilia, or the Enchanted Chocolate Pot

“A deliciously enchanting adventure full of magic, mystery and delight.” —Stephanie Burgis, author of Kat, Incorrigible

Murder, Magic, and What We Wore | Leila Roy, Kirkus

Librarians Shout ‘N Share Their Literary Finds | BookExpo 2017


Spies Like Thus, Book Threat

Episode 63, Fashion Forward with @curiosityjones, Bellwether Friends

Kelly Jones, author of MURDER, MAGIC, AND WHAT WE WORE, on going back to the drawing board | Adventures in YA Publishing

Friend Friday, Kirby Larson


Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer
by Kelly Jones, illustrated by Katie Kath
May 12, 2015, Knopf Books for Young Readers

School Library Journal 30-Second Booktalk Video


ALA ALSC Children’s Notable Book – 2016

2016 MSRI/CBC Mathical Honor Book

2016 Washington State Book Award Finalist

2016 Judy Lopez Memorial Award for Children’s Literature Honor Book

2018 Garden State Children’s Book Award Nominee

2017-2018 Maryland Black-Eyed Susan Award Nominee

2018 Arizona Grand Canyon Reader Award Nominee

2018 Oregon Reader’s Choice Award Nominee

2018 Pacific Northwest Young Reader’s Choice Award Nominee

2017-2018 Arkansas Charlie May Simon Children’s Book Award Reading List

2018 Oklahoma Children’s Sequoyah Book Award Masterlist

2017 Read Across Lawrence, KS Children’s Selection

2016 Missouri State Teachers Association Reading List (Intermediate)

2017-2018 Indiana Young Hoosier Book Award Nominee

2017-2018 Tennessee Volunteer State Book Award Nominee (Intermediate Division)

2017 North Dakota Flicker Tale Award Nominee

2016-2017 New Mexico Land of Enchantment Book Award Nominee (Coyote Reading List)

2016-2017 Massachusetts Children’s Book Award (MCBA) Nominee

2016-2017 Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List

2016-2017 Georgia Children’s Book Award Finalist

2016-2017 Vermont Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children’s Book Award Master List

2016-2017 Maine Student Book Award Title List

2016-2017 North Carolina Children’s Book Award Junior Book nominee

2016-2017 Mukilteo Children’s Choice Chapter Book Award Nominee

2016-2017 Horned Toad Tales Nominee

2016 Children’s Choice Debut Author Finalist, Children’s Choice Book Awards

Indie Choice Award Nominee for the E. B. White Read-Aloud Award

Outstanding Merit, Best Children’s Books of the Year, 2016 Edition, Bank Street College Center for Children’s Literature


Kirkus, February 1, 2015

“…A delightful protagonist, interesting fowl of various breeds and a cast of appealing second-string characters make this a top pick for young readers, poultry fanciers or not.” (starred review)

School Library Journal, February, 2015 (scroll down to Middle Grade)

“…Told in letters, quizzes, newspaper clippings, and delicious ink drawings reminiscent of Quentin Blake, this middle grade epistolary novel has a little magic and a lot of warm family humor. Jones delivers a dynamic Latina protagonist…Readers will cheer for Sophie and clamor for more of those amazing chickens. Exceptional, indeed.” (starred review)

Publishers Weekly, March 23, 2015

“Jones debuts with a comically poignant story composed of the letters that 12-year-old Sophie Brown writes…”

Booklist, April 1, 2015

“…Full-page illustrations work with the epistolary format to tell a story that is as much about the process of grieving as it is about supernatural chickens. The combination of real-life emotion and otherworldly farming makes for a comedic story with the right amount of pathos.

 The Horn Book, June 9, 2015

“…Sophie’s unique way of figuring life out on her own makes her easy to root for and provides entertainment beyond the inherent humor of chickens.”

Shelf Awareness, June 30, 2015

“Debut novelist Kelly A. Jones introduces brave, highly intelligent and resourceful Sophie Brown, a 12-year-old poultry farmer in the making…” (starred review)

20150417Unshelved Book Club review (in comic form!)

The Booklist Reader, April 3, 2015

Review of the Day, A Fuse #8 Production, June 1, 2015

CCBC Book of the Week, June 23, 2015

Libros Latin@s from Latin@s in Kid Lit, April 16, 2015 (with teaching tips!)

 educating alice by Monica Edinger, May 4, 2015

Reading Through Life, April 19, 2015

Reads for Keeps, June 16, 2015


Best Books 2015, School Library Journal

Best Middle-Grade Books of 2015, Kirkus

CCBC Choices 2016

Top 2015 Mighty Girl Books for Tweens & Teens, A Mighty Girl

100 Magnificent Children’s Books 2015, A Fuse 8 Production (School Library Journal)

We Need Diverse Books End of Year Middle Grade Recommendations

Best of 2015, All The Wonders

Best children’s books of 2015, The Kansas City Star

Favorite Titles of 2015, Latin@s in Kid Lit

A Good Read, Tri City News

Holiday Book Gift Guide, San Francisco Chronicle

2015’s Best Books for Children, The News & Observer

Oakland Public Library Holiday Gift Guide — Children’s Books

Q&A: We Need Diverse Books talks about Scholastic Reading Club collaboration

“50 Best Books for Summer,” Instructor Magazine

(also in The Washington Post)

“Sublime summer reads for readers, from toddlers to teens,” Seattle Times, June 21, 2015.

“Hey, kids, warm up to summer reading with these 10 titles,” Kansas City Star, May 3, 2015

The Center for Fiction: Junior Edition: New Books for Younger Readers #25

“Summer reads: the kid edition,” Minnesota Public Radio, July 9, 2015

“What your kids (and you) should read this summer,” ParentMap

“Strange birds and a brave young girl,” The Daily Republic, June 15, 2015

“Book Recommendations from Books Inc.,” San Francisco Chronicle, June 3, 2015

“Which books to get your kids this summer,” San Francisco Chronicle, June 7, 2015

“Top 5 summer reads for children 8-12”, Cambridge Chronicle, June 12, 2015

Amazon’s Best Books of 2015: Ages 9-12


“Indies Introduce Q&A with Kelly Jones,” ABA, May 21, 2015

“4 Questions and 4 Sentence Starters with Kelly Jones”, Watch. Connect. Read. June 18, 2015

“The Debut Club: An Interview with Kelly Jones,” Sweet Sixteeners, May 9, 2015

“5 Amazing Middle Grade Novels Selected by Kelly Jones,” The Children’s Book Review, June 10, 2015

“Interview with Kelly Jones,” On the Verge, May 4, 2015

“Hey Kid! with Kelly Jones,” Heidi Schulz Books, May 14, 2015

“Q&A with Kelly Jones,” Reads For Keeps, July 20, 2015





















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