SEASONS

A BOOK OF POEMS

Two venerable contributors have teamed up to make a small collection of poetry for beginning readers. The I Can Read series has usually produced fine volumes that new young readers can actually read themselves; this has the added attraction of introducing various kinds of verse forms, both rhymed and unrhymed, in very short bursts. The contents are divided by season: Eleven poems each for “Winter Bits” and “Spring Things” and nine poems each for “Summer Thoughts” and “The Feel of Fall.” Not all are completely successful, but most capture that essence of perception that is good poetry. “The crickets / fill the night / with their voices— / It is like / a message / in another language / spoken to a part / of me / who hasn’t / happened yet.” That’s “The Crickets” in its entirety. Although the city is mentioned in some verses, the imagery is decidedly rural if not downright rustic, with wooden fences, dirt roads, and meadows in evidence. Children wear helmets to ride their bikes, and carry backpacks, but the pictures are timeless, if in country mode. Blegvad (First Friends, not reviewed, etc.) is a master of the vibrant line and telling detail—every leaf blows in the wind just so; every child has his or her own specific energy or repose. A small delight. (Poetry. 6-9)

Pub Date: March 1, 2002

ISBN: 0-06-026698-8

Page Count: 64

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2002

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

HONEY, I LOVE

Iffy art cramps this 25th-anniversary reissue of the joyful title poem from Greenfield’s first collection (1978), illustrated by the Dillons. As timeless as ever, the poem celebrates everything a child loves, from kissing Mama’s warm, soft arm to listening to a cousin from the South, “ ’cause every word he says / just kind of slides out of his mouth.” “I love a lot of things / a whole lot of things,” the narrator concludes, “And honey, / I love ME, too.” The African-American child in the pictures sports an updated hairstyle and a big, infectious grin—but even younger viewers will notice that the spray of cool water that supposedly “stings my stomach” isn’t aimed there, and that a comforter on the child’s bed changes patterns between pages. More problematic, though, is a dropped doll that suddenly acquires a horrified expression that makes it look disturbingly like a live baby, and the cutesy winged fairy that hovers over the sleeping child in the final scene. The poem deserves better. (Picture book/poetry. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2003

ISBN: 0-06-009123-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Amistad/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2002

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

OTHER GOOSE

RE-NURSERIED AND RE-RHYMED CHILDREN'S CLASSICS

“Little boy blue / come blow your tuba. / The sheep are in Venice, / and the cow’s in Aruba.” Pairing frenetic and garishly colored art to familiar rhymes in “more modern, more fresh, and well…more Goosian” versions, Seibold stakes out Stinky Cheese Man territory to introduce “Jack and Jill / and a pickle named Bill,” the Old Woman Who Lived in a Sneaker (“She had a great big stereo speaker”), Peter Pumpkin Pickle Pepper and about two dozen more “re-nurseried” figures. Against patterned or spray-painted backgrounds, an entire page of umbrella-carrying raindrops float down, a bunch of mice run up (“the clock struck one; / the rest had fun”), cats fiddle for Old King Coal and others, Jack B. Nimble makes a lifelong career out of demonstrating his one trick and a closing rendition of the counting rhyme “One, Two, I Lost My Shoe” is transformed into a clever reprise as many of the characters return to take final bows. Sparkles on the cover; chuckles (despite some lame rhyming) throughout. (Fractured nursery rhymes. 7-9)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-8118-6882-2

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Chronicle

Review Posted Online: Sept. 15, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2010

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more