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TWOSOMES by Marilyn Singer


Love Poems from the Animal Kingdom

by Marilyn Singer, illustrated by Lee Wildish

Age Range: 6 & up

Pub Date: Jan. 11th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-375-86710-1
Publisher: Knopf

This is a gift book, a little Peter Rabbit–sized treat you would give your valentine along with an appropriately diminutive box of sweets. A bijou offering, then, but a well-made one in both its breezy couplets and natty, mildly wacky artwork. The 15 couplets that make up this collection range about, some plainly jokey (“Hugging you takes some practice. / So I’ll start out with a cactus,” says the porcupine), some touch upon transience (“I’m finding a leaf. You’re taking a bite. / Wait a few weeks and our hearts will take flight”). One tackles the urban cool of pigeons: “We’ll spend the day wooing, dodging the cars. / We’ll spend the night cooing, under the stars.” Others play with puns (“You’re the porpoise of my life”) or brush lightly with love. Wildish’s illustrations are chummy and frankly innocent—even the love-zonked squirrel appears to have only been sampling the acorns—and bonbon-sweet without being saccharine. The line work is delicate and exacting, and the colors look as fresh as if they’d just been scraped from the palette. (Picture book/poetry. 6 & up)