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Featured books by J. Patrick Lewis

Fact and fiction can complement each other, especially in the hands of award-winning poet, J. Patrick Lewis. Sometimes, however, Lewis's poetry for young people is just for plain old fun!

Arithme-Tickle: An Even Number of Odd Riddle-Rhymes

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrated by: Frank Remkiewicz
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Each lively rhyme or riddle about everyday things actually asks a math question; some easy, some more difficult, all playfully involving addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Humorous spins on recognizable situations are enhanced by comical illustrations.

Blackbeard the Pirate King

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Blackbeard’s story is “a tale to billow a pirate’s sail!” Told here in a series of poems, including brief bits of factual information and dramatic images, this is a book that will capture the imagination of any pirate enthusiast. An author’s note provides additional information, a timeline and sources for what we know about this fierce pirate.

Edgar Allan Poe's Pie: Math Puzzlers in Classic Poems

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Well-known poems are recast as puzzlers that can only be solved by using math. From easy to difficult, math and poems are sure to delight both mathematicians and poetry lovers.

Face Bug

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Beginning at the Face Bug Museum, readers are invited to "Climb through windows, walls, or basement…" to meet "…Show Bugs…" Line drawings and up-close (and personal) photographs of bugs combine with poetry and fact to present an array of often creepy critters.

Heroes and She-roes: Poems of Amazing and Everyday Heroes

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Some heroes and "she-roes" are famous; others are little known. Brave people who gave of themselves are introduced in a range of poems and handsome, realistic illustrations.

If You Were a Chocolate Mustache

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The watermelon seed that skitters across the page becomes a concrete poem and  is just one of the funny poetic forms in this collection. The humor in each short poem (from riddles to haiku) is heightened by comic black/white illustrations.

Last Laughs: Animal Epitaphs

By: J. Patrick Lewis, Jane Yolen
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Enter into a cemetery for animals, read their epitaphs, learn their fates. Though not for the faint-hearted, the sometimes gory tales are always darkly humorous and enhanced by appropriately gloomy illustrations.

Monumental Verses

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Stunning color photographs and poems combine to pay homage to some of the “world’s enduring man-made constructions” while introducing a range of poetic forms. The result is a memorable collection of visual art, information, and literary art sure to stand up to multiple examinations.

National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Animals from around the world are introduced by poets from different backgrounds and different times in this carefully crafted collection. Handsome photographs and thoughtful organization make this a book to share widely.

Please Bury Me in the Library

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrated by: Kyle Stone
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Celebrate letters, words, libraries and reading in engaging, often slyly humorous poems. Varied forms are inspired by other beloved poets, but are original with equally fresh illustrations.

Spot the Plot: A Riddle Book of Book Riddles

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrated by: Lynn Munsinger
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Short rhymes are riddles, asking readers to figure which books are being described while additional clues are presented in animated illustrations. From Click, Clack, Moo to traditional folktales, young readers (and their adults) will enjoy this interactive book.

Take Two!: A Celebration of Twins

By: J. Patrick Lewis, Jane Yolen
Illustrated by: Sophie Blackall
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Since each poet has a personal connection to twins (Lewis is one; Yolen has twin grandchildren) the poems in this oversized collection ring true. Lighthearted illustrations capitalize on the appealing poetry which plays with words and ideas.

The Fantastic 5 and 10 Cent Store: A Rebus Adventure

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrated by: Valorie Fisher
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The townspeople are flummoxed when a new store mysteriously appears. But Benny Penny examines its mysterious stock — from the flying toaster to a walking teapot. Surreal illustrations correspond with the story revealed rebus-style, with words and pictures. The truly fantastic tale is told in complete words at the end.

The Last Resort

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrated by: Roberto Innocenti
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

On an afternoon like any other, an artist's imagination disappears — and never returns. His quest to recover it leads him to The Last Resort, a remote seaside hotel visited by some remarkable guests who are inspired by famous literary figures. Illustrated by renowned artist Roberto Innocenti, this book is a celebration of the imagination and is sure to appeal to bibliophiles of all ages.

Underwear Salesman

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Various occupations have never been so much fun as when they are presented in verse and amusing mixed media illustrations. Wordplay and puns abound, often laugh-out-loud funny.

Voices from the March on Washington

By: J. Patrick Lewis, George Ella Lyon
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

An August day on the national Mall has been made famous by the powerful "I Have a Dream" speech given by Martin Luther King, Jr. But many others were there, too. Real and imagined voices from that day are presented in varied poems, bringing it into focus and reminding young readers that they "…can make a difference…[they] have a voice."

Wing Nuts: Screwy Haiku

By: Paul Janeczko, J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrated by: Tricia Tusa
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Sophisticated readers will appreciate the sly humor and wordplay in the "kissin' cousin of haiku." Senyru focuses on everyday activities (e.g., "Freedom vanishes, as the babysitter arrives… kids are tied in nots") complemented here by comic illustrations.

World Rat Day: Poems About Real Holidays You've Never Heard Of

By: J. Patrick Lewis
Illustrated by: Anna Raff
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Unique observances for everything from rats to limericks are celebrated in a variety of poems and poetic forms. When combined with comic illustrations, the lighthearted collection is sure to keep readers chuckling from cover to cover.

Interested in wonderful interviews with tween and teen authors? Hop on over to our sister site, AdLit.org, and browse the library.

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"I'm wondering what to read next." — Matilda, Roald Dahl