Adventurous writings for literary risk-takers and thrill-seekers.



A collection of original prose and poetry that ranges from thoughtful to provocative and from experimental to really far-out.

Poet and mother Lomax assembled these avant-garde writings from contributors around the country as a showcase for their talents and to encourage children to literally take their own pencils outside proscribed boundaries. The short stories, playlets, concrete poetry and wordplay are all free-flowing and decidedly nontraditional. Their sentiments are sometimes warm and tender, sometimes humorous and sometimes weird. The more than 80 contributors include those remembering moments from their Mexican-American, Indian, Danish and Iraqi childhoods and heritages. Roald Dahl, Nietzsche and the Bible are sources of inspiration for others. Ecology enters into the mix in verse about endangered manatees. Children recreate a Yoko Ono activity in a “Hide and Seek Piece.” In one of the more entertaining entries, a poet imagines “scenes from the life of a sweater: / your mother bought me for you / july is moth month for my closet kin / i come from a close-knit family / you can get pulled over in a cardigan.” Teachers and students willing to take a giant leap beyond conventionality may find inspiration here. Straightforward of design, the volume is illustrated with black-and-white line drawings and photographs, and blank pages are appended.

Adventurous writings for literary risk-takers and thrill-seekers. (author biographies, afterword) (Anthology. 10-14)

Pub Date: June 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-9850837-6-2

Page Count: 178

Publisher: Black Radish

Review Posted Online: April 23, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2013

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Weaving together architectural, engineering and Native American history, Weitzman tells the fascinating story of how Mohawk Indian ironworkers helped construct the sprawling bridges and towering skyscrapers that dominate our urban landscape. The book begins with a brief but informative history of the Kanien'kéhaka—People of the Flint. Leaders in establishing the League of the Iroquois, a confederation of Indian nations in the New York region, Mohawks had a longstanding reputation for their sense of tight-knit community, attraction to danger and love for physical challenge, qualities that served them well when hired in the late 1800s to do the most arduous work in railroad and bridge construction. With the advent of the skyscraper, Mohawks possessing agility that seemed gravity-defying worked hundreds of feet above the ground. They were not immune to tragedy, and the author discusses in detail the collapse of the Québec Bridge that killed 31 Mohawk workers. Illustrated with black-and-white photographs that capture the daring spirit of these heroic workers, the concise, captivating account offers great insight into the little-known but considerable role Native Americans played in our architectural and engineering achievements. (glossary, bibliography, source notes, index) (Nonfiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: Sept. 14, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-59643-162-1

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Flash Point/Roaring Brook

Review Posted Online: July 30, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2010

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In a large, handsome format, Tarnowska offers six tales plus an abbreviated version of the frame story, retold in formal but contemporary language and sandwiched between a note on the Nights’ place in her childhood in Lebanon and a page of glossary and source notes. Rather than preserve the traditional embedded structure and cliffhanger cutoffs, she keeps each story discrete and tones down the sex and violence. This structure begs the question of why Shahriyar lets Shahrazade [sic] live if she tells each evening’s tale complete, but it serves to simplify the reading for those who want just one tale at a time. Only the opener, “Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp,” is likely to be familiar to young readers; in others a prince learns to control a flying “Ebony Horse” by “twiddling” its ears, contending djinn argue whether “Prince Kamar el Zaman [or] Princess Boudour” is the more beautiful (the prince wins) and in a Cinderella tale a “Diamond Anklet” subs for the glass slipper. Hénaff’s stylized scenes of domed cityscapes and turbaned figures add properly whimsical visual notes to this short but animated gathering. (Folktales. 10-12)


Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-84686-122-2

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Barefoot Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2010

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