Lest we forget the magic of the printed page, this collection of poems by contemporary writers celebrates the joys of reading. "Early in the morning/ dog, book and me/ spend quiet moments/ just we three," writes Karen Winnick. In "Pirates," Jill Corcoran conveys a book-inspired imaginative journey: "I storm/ toward shackled screams/ of a kidnapped damsel./ I swashbuckle through my book's/ CHAPTER TWO." In Yayo's acrylic spreads, an open book becomes a whale's tail, a treasure box, and a drifting raft, emphasizing the transformative potential of words. Tom Robert Shields's title poem underscores the message: "I'll plant in you/ a spring-seedling/ with bursting life/ while you are reading./ I am the book/ You are needing." Ages 4–8. (Mar.)
Contributing Poets include: Contributors: Jane Yolen, Naiomi Shihab Nye, Rebecca Kai Dotlich, Karla Kuskin, Kristine O'Connell George, Karen Winnick, Lee Bennett Hopkins, Beverly McLoughland, Michele Krueger, Avis Harley, Tom Robert Shields, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater and ME:)
Just in from ALA BOOKLIST:
ALA BOOKLIST - MARCH 1,2011
I Am the Book.
Hopkins, Lee Bennett (Editor) , Yayo (Illustrator)
Mar 2011. 32 p. Holiday, hardcover, $16.95. (9780823421190). 811.
In this picture-book collection from veteran anthologist Hopkins, 13 well-known children’s poets celebrate how books can take readers on wild adventures (“I storm / toward shackled screams / of a kidnapped damsel”), as well as how plain words can reveal the surprising drama in ordinary things, even the rhyming sounds of a clock: “tick-tock / ding-dong / bing-bong.” Karla Kuskin speaks about the “wonders of wandering / wonderful pages” and “the nonsense and knowledge” the come “tumbling out.” And in another selection, Kristine O’Connell George writes, “riding home from the library, / don’t need a window seat. / Got a great new book to read, / eleven more beneath my feet.” The whimsical, light-toned acrylic artwork extends the metaphors with witty, fantastical transformations of books: in one scene, a dark-blue book cover becomes an ocean, where you can “dive in the sea of words and swim.” Fun for sharing with preschoolers, this will also spark discussion in grade-school writing and art classes. Notes about each poet are appended.
— Hazel Rochman
JILL CORCORAN is a children’s book agent with Herman Agency. Her current interests include: high concept Young Adult and Middle Grade Thrillers, Mystery, Romance, Romantic Comedies, and Adventure manuscripts.