POLAR BEAR, ARCTIC HARE

POEMS OF THE FROZEN NORTH

In this natural complement to Judy Sierra’s Antarctic Antics: A Book of Penguin Poems (1998), illus by Jose Aruego & Ariane Dewey, Spinelli offers rhymed introductions to an arctic menagerie that ranges from orcas (“What’s black and white / [but not a penguin]? / What’s fast and fierce / [but not a bear]?”) to snow fleas, with the occasional wildflower or iceberg tucked in for good measure. In large painted landscapes that show the arctic in all seasons, Fernandes often places these easily recognizable animals in clusters—to the point, sometimes, that viewers may come away thinking that the “frozen North” is more densely populated than it actually is. Still, such light, inventive, easy-to-understand poetry is worth reading, either alone or aloud. (endnotes) (Picture book/poetry. 7-9)

Pub Date: March 1, 2007

ISBN: 978-1-59078-344-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Wordsong/Boyds Mills

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2007

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CORNFLAKES

Picking up where his third gathering of poetry and pictures (Candy Corn, 1999) left off, Stevenson gives wry or gently sentimental twists to 25 more everyday sights: fathers and sons in the park; bicyclists; old people and buildings; his paintbox; his wastebasket; a mountainous hamburger. As usual, he is fondest of collections, depicting sets of salt-and-pepper shakers, piles of garbage bags (“dressed in black, / wearing bow ties, / ready for the opera.`), an upside down forest of guitars hanging from a music store ceiling, and the like, with slapdash brush or pen work that captures essences with brilliant, offhand precision. The poems are equally casual, equally right, presented in a lively and attractive variety of type sizes, fonts, and colors. Tailor-made for sharing, in class or on a lap. (Poetry. 7-9, adult)

Pub Date: March 31, 2000

ISBN: 0-688-16718-7

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2000

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THE BUG IN TEACHER'S COFFEE

AND OTHER SCHOOL POEMS

PLB 0-06-027940-0 Dakos’s collection of 23 poems from the perspective of items found at school satisfies the I Can Read requirements of simplicity and word repetition, but may not lure beginning readers back for a second time. The material is uninspiring: The school’s front door says, “Keep me shut,/I have the flu,/Achooooooooo!/Achooooooooo!/Achooooooooo!/Achooooooooo!/Keep me shut,/I have the flu.” A book sings “Happy Birthday” to a ruler, then sings “Happy Unbirthday” when the ruler says that it is not its birthday. Also appearing are a couple of clever items—one on a kidnapped pencil and another on a comb pulling hazardous duty—along with some typographic elements that amiably convey the idea that words are malleable; Reed’s illustrations possess geniality and character, making some inanimate objects very personable. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 31, 1999

ISBN: 0-06-027939-7

Page Count: 48

Publisher: HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 1999

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