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
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
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.
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.
I Am Polar Bear
Former children's poet laureate, J. Patrick Lewis, allows the polar bear tell us what he’s called in different cultures — White Bear, Ice Bear, Sea Bear, Sailor of the Icebergs, the Ever-wandering One. The Inuit's say “I am Nanuk”). The devastating ending shows the polar bear adrift on a shrinking bit of ice, “losing hold” — a reference to how this Arctic animal is threatened by extinction and in need of human protection.
If You Were a Chocolate Mustache
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.
Keep a Pocket in Your Poem: Classic Poems and Playful Parodies
Thirteen classic poems by poets such as Robert Frost, Langston Hughes, Emily Dickinson, and David McCord are paired with parodies written by J. Patrick Lewis that honor and play off of the original poems in a range of ways. This playful introduction to classics will inspire imagination and wonder even as it tickles funny bones.
Last Laughs: Prehistoric Epitaphs
They’re all gone now but a group of dinosaurs comes back to life even if only while reading funny epitaphs. Equally comic illustrations and a smattering of factual information are included on the pages of this clever collection.
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
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.
Poem-mobiles: Crazy Car Poems
Funny, engaging poems and pictures worth poring over offer readers delightful details about some really crazy cars! Ready for a ride in the Dragonwagon? How about an Eel-ectric Car? You really auto take these poems out for a spin.
Spot the Plot: A Riddle Book of Book Riddles
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
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
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
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.
Voices from the March on Washington
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
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
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.
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