Poems About Bugs
by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 9
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Each of over 25 different “bugs” receives its own short, titled, whimsical poem, an accompanying collage, and a few sentences of factual information.

Almost every insect or arachnid commonly known to most Americans is included in this lighthearted treasury. Each poem highlights some aspect of its subject, whether its appearance, its behavior, or, as in the cockroach, its reputation: “I am not loved, not loved at all. / I’m not like any other. / But surely someone cares for me. / I think it is my MOTHER.” Although facts about the cockroach accompanying the poem and in the endnotes give some reasons to like the creature, it is odd that, after mentioning its association with “poor housekeeping,” there is no mention of the bug’s actually obsessive cleanliness. In general, the poems are clever and humorous, and most of the rhythmic ones scan well. Some use elementary wordplay in the titles, as in “Par-tick-u-lar-ly Awesome” and “Mite-y Nice Advice.” The fly poem is no match for the one by Ogden Nash, but “Grasshopper Green” rivals limericks by Edward Lear. Sweet’s dependably eye-catching illustrations—infused with humor here—are an appropriate match. Care was given to balancing gender among those poems that use pronouns, and there is, incidentally, a note devoted to the fact that female ladybugs are nearly indistinguishable from male ladybugs.

Happy-go-lucky fun with words, collage, and a smattering of facts about bugs. (Picture book/poetry. 5-9)

Pub Date: May 9th, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-8050-9818-1
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Christy Ottaviano/Henry Holt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 2017

Kirkus Interview
Melissa Sweet
author of SOME WRITER!
September 26, 2016

“SOME PIG,” Charlotte the spider’s praise for Wilbur, is just one fondly remembered snippet from E. B. White’s Charlotte’s Web. In Some Writer!, two-time Caldecott Honor winner and 2014 Kirkus Prize finalist Melissa Sweet mixes White’s personal letters, photos, and family ephemera with her own exquisite artwork to tell his story, from his birth in 1899 to his death in 1985. Budding young writers will be fascinated and inspired by the journalist, New Yorker contributor, and children’s book author who loved words his whole life. This authorized tribute is the first fully illustrated biography of E. B. White and includes an afterword by Martha White, E. B. White's granddaughter. “Like Charlotte, Sweet spins a terrific story,” our reviewer writes in a starred review. “A masterful biography that will enchant young readers.” View video >


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