SEEING THE BLUE BETWEEN

ADVICE AND INSPIRATION FOR YOUNG POETS

For a class, or to work up enthusiasm about writing—and not just poetry—one could hardly do better for young people than this fresh and inviting collection. In a series of letters, usually addressed to the young poets reading the section, contemporary poets write a page or two of inspirational how-to and then add a poem or two of their own. Janeczko has gathered some wonderful contributors, many of whom have made a career not only in writing but in writing for young people: Janet S. Wong, Naomi Shihab Nye, Karla Kuskin, Nikki Grimes, X.J. Kennedy, Joseph Bruchac, Douglas Florian, and many others. Like a favorite poem, their advice has rhythm and repetition: observe; read a lot; listen to words; write and write; revise; say your poetry out loud. The title comes from Kristine O’Connell George’s notion of seeing stories not in the clouds, but in “the blue between.” Andrew Hudgins has a wonderful one-page essay on the benefits of reading poetry in the bathroom. “Poetry names the secrets you didn’t know you were keeping,” says Robert Farnsworth. Teachers and librarians will love this, too—as a classroom tool and as a way of explaining the art of poetry lucidly. (notes on contributors with thumbnail photos, index of first lines, acknowledgements) (Poetry. 10-15)

Pub Date: April 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-7636-0881-5

Page Count: 144

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2002

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An engaging, admiring, and insightful portrait of an uncompromising, civic-minded, visionary artist.

MAYA LIN

THINKING WITH HER HANDS

One of the world’s most celebrated creators of civic architecture is profiled in this accessible, engaging biography.

Similar in style and format to her Everybody Paints!: The Lives and Art of the Wyeth Family (2014) and Wideness and Wonder: The Life and Art of Georgia O’Keeffe (2011), Rubin’s well-researched profile examines the career, creative processes, and career milestones of Maya Lin. Rubin discusses at length Lin’s most famous achievement, designing the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Chinese-American Lin was a reserved college student who entered and won the competition to design and build the memorial. Her youth and ethnicity were subjects of great controversy, and Rubin discusses how Lin fought to ensure her vision of the memorial remained intact. Other notable works by Lin, including the Civil Rights Memorial for the Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, Alabama, a library and chapel for the Children’s Defense Fund, the Museum of Chinese in America, and the outdoor Wave Field project are examined but not in as much depth as the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Attractively designed, the book is illustrated extensively with color photos and drawings.

An engaging, admiring, and insightful portrait of an uncompromising, civic-minded, visionary artist. (bibliography, source notes, index) (Biography. 12-15)

Pub Date: Nov. 7, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4521-0837-7

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Chronicle Books

Review Posted Online: Aug. 21, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2017

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A loud, cynical cash grab—far from amazing.

THE AMAZING BOOK IS NOT ON FIRE

THE WORLD OF DAN AND PHIL

A couple more YouTube stars write a book.

Howell, who goes by "danisnotonfire," and "AmazingPhil" Lester are the latest YouTube stars hoping to cross over to the world of books. Instead of crafting a memoir or adapting their videos into a fictional series, the duo have filled these 225 pages with bold graphics, scatological humor, and quirky how tos that may entice their fan base but will leave everyone else out in the cold. It contains a wide variety of nonsense, ranging from Phil's chat logs to information on breeding hamsters. There's an emoji-only interview and some Dan/Phil fanfiction (by Howell rather than a fan) and even a full double-page spread of the pair's unsuccessful selfies. All this miscellany is shoveled in without much rhyme or reason following introductory pages that clearly introduce the pair as children, leaving readers who aren't in on the joke completely out of the loop. The authors make no attempt to bring in those on the outside, but in all honesty, why should they? The only people buying this book are kids who already love everything Dan and Phil do or clueless relatives in desperate search of a gift for the awkward teens in their lives. The book's biggest fault is its apparent laziness. It feels like something slapped together over a weekend, with no heart or soul.   

A loud, cynical cash grab—far from amazing. (Nonfiction. 12-16)

Pub Date: Oct. 13, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-101-93984-0

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Oct. 30, 2015

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