A FAMILY OF POEMS

MY FAVORITE POETRY FOR CHILDREN

Kennedy’s focus here is on sharing the classic poets with children, and she emphasizes the closeness and warmth that comes from using poems to spark memories of times spent together as a family. Divided into sections, the poems focus on the self, the silly, animals, seasons, the seashore, adventure and bedtime. Truly a collection that will grow with a child, some can be shared with the very young, others are better saved for later years. She includes a wide variety of styles and sources, voices old and new. Muth’s luminous full-bleed watercolors suit the poems perfectly, evoking emotions and sometimes deepening understanding. The poems on facing pages for the most part tie in nicely together, allowing the illustrations to flow across the divide. Foreign poems are included in their original languages—unfortunately not identified. While the actual collection is only so-so, there is excellence in illustration, Kennedy’s introductions and as a way of showing children that all poetry need not rhyme and be funny. (index of first lines) (Poetry. 4+)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2005

ISBN: 0-7868-5111-2

Page Count: 144

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2005

Categories:

A LIBRARY

A lushly illustrated homage to librarians who provide a welcome and a home away from home for all who enter.

A love letter to libraries.

A Black child, with hair in two puffballs tied with yellow ribbons, a blue dress with a Peter Pan collar, and black patent leather Mary Janes, helps Grandmother with the housework, then, at Grandmother’s suggestion, heads to the library. The child’s eagerness to go, with two books under an arm and one in their hand, suggests that this is a favorite destination. The books’ wordless covers emphasize their endless possibilities. The protagonist’s description of the library makes clear that they are always free to be themselves there—whether they feel happy or sad, whether they’re reading mysteries or recipes, and whether they feel “quick and smart” or “contained and cautious.” Robinson’s vibrant, carefully composed digital illustrations, with bright colors that invite readers in and textures and patterns in every image, effectively capture the protagonist’s passion for reading and appreciation for a space where they feel accepted regardless of disposition. In her author’s note, Giovanni states that she spent summers visiting her grandmother in Knoxville, Tennessee, where she went to the Carnegie Branch of the Lawson McGhee Library. She expresses gratitude for Mrs. Long, the librarian, who often traveled to the main library to get books that Giovanni could not find in their segregated branch. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A lushly illustrated homage to librarians who provide a welcome and a home away from home for all who enter. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 27, 2022

ISBN: 978-0-358-38765-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Versify/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: July 26, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2022

Categories:

LIZARDS, FROGS, AND POLLIWOGS

POEMS AND PAINTINGS

“It’s wise to stay clear / Of the dangerous cobra / All months of the year, / Including Octobra.” But it wouldn’t be wise to stay clear of Florian’s latest poetry collection, sixth in his successful series of witty poems and paintings about creatures of all sorts (Mammalabilia: Poems and Paintings, 2000, etc.). This volume includes 21 short poems about reptiles and amphibians, including common creatures such as the bullfrog and the box turtle and more exotic specimens such as the komodo dragon and the red-eyed tree frog. Teachers will like the way the rhyming poems integrate into elementary science lessons, imparting some basic zoological facts along with the giggles, and kids will love the poems because they’re clever and funny in a style reminiscent of Ogden Nash, full of wordplay and sly humor. Florian’s impressionistic full-page illustrations are done in watercolors on primed, brown paper bags, often offering another layer of humor, as in the orange newt reading the Newt News on the cover. A first choice for the poetry shelves in all libraries, this collection is toadally terrific. (Poetry. 4-10)

Pub Date: April 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-15-202591-X

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2001

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