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A Book of Penguin Poems

by Judy Sierra & illustrated by Jose Aruego & Ariane Dewey

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: March 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-15-201006-8
Publisher: Harcourt

A blithe collection of poems about emperor penguins based on factual information about the species. The book opens with “A Hatchling’s Song”: “I’m pecking hard./I’m tired, I’m weak,/It hurts my beak . . . . My head’s outside./The moon is bright—/The world’s so white!” While his mother takes a vacation, the hatchling settles in on his father’s feet, snuggled into the soft belly fluff. It’s a warm, safe place until the father takes a walk, provoking one of the funniest spreads, with the hatchling hanging on for dear life. “Regurgitate” is a humorous look at the youngster’s dinner time. The young penguins make note of penguin enemies in the inventive “Predator Riddles.” The penguins grow up: “Be My Penguin” is an adolescent courtship song that pokes fun at young love. The animated, icy doings are faithfully chronicled by Aruego and Dewey, but lest readers think this is all tongue-in-cheek, the author includes short list of further information. (Picture book/poetry. 4-8)