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ANIMALS ANONYMOUS by Richard Michelson

ANIMALS ANONYMOUS

By Richard Michelson (Author) , Scott Fischer (Illustrator)

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: July 8th, 2008
ISBN: 978-1-4169-1424-2
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Teenagers are animals, this author/illustrator team cleverly indicate. This collection of poems alphabetically highlights the animal world from A to Z. Some of the sassy, smart-mouthed entries include “The Very Ugly Caterpillar,” “Mighty MITE” and “Holy MOLEy.” Just like teens themselves, the poems range from hilarious to self-aware to vulnerable; the wordplay, rhythms and dialect recall hip-hop music. The book itself is styled like a graffiti-covered spiral notebook that a high-school student with a penchant for temerity might carry, with intricate, multicolored ballpoint-pen caricatures of animals and notes scribbled every-which-way in the margins. Despite the appealing design, the content will likely appeal to only a small audience of astute poetry readers. To understand the parallels between teens and their animal counterparts requires a degree of wisdom and an ability to step away from the myopia of teenhood. Adults who work with and love teens for what they are will enjoy this volume, but the target teen audience might not appreciate it as much. (Poetry. 14 & up)