Hopkins, Lee Bennett, Selector All the World’s a Stage
Gr. 4–6 40 pp. Creative Editions
Illustrated by Guy Billout. Using Shakespeare’s “Seven Ages of Man” monologue from As You Like It as his armature, Hopkins has chosen two or three poems for each life stage. The poignant, funny, or thought-provoking poems stem from a range of poets — Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Lewis Carroll to contemporaries such as Janet S. Wong and Paul Janeczko. Surrealistic illustrations reminiscent of Magritte and Escher create intriguing settings.
Subjects: Poetry collections; Shakespeare, William
Kennedy, Caroline, Selector Poems to Learn by Heart
Gr. 4–6 192 pp. Hyperion
Illustrated by Jon J Muth. Kennedy’s hefty, eclectic collection of over one hundred poems and excerpts includes such favorites as Thayer’s “Casey at the Bat,” Silverstein’s “Sick,” and a selection from Carroll’s Through the Looking-Glass. The selections range from classic to modern and vary in length and tone. Muth’s watercolor paintings express the poems’ emotions simply and help make even the sophisticated selections approachable. Ind.
Subjects: Poetry Collections
Sidman, Joyce What the Heart Knows: Chants, Charms, & Blessings
High school 65 pp. Houghton
Illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski. Sidman and Zagarenski present “Chants & Charms,” “Spells & Invocations,” “Laments & Remembrances,” and “Praise Songs & Blessings” in a variety of poetic forms. Each poem speaks directly from Sidman’s heart to the reader’s, addressing subjects of deep importance: forgiveness, friendship, bravery, death, illness, moving. Zagarenski’s illustrations beautifully extend the poems with her dreamy style and deft use of white space, symbolism, and images.
VanDerwater, Amy Ludwig Forest Has a Song
Gr. K–3 32 pp. Clarion
Illustrated by Robbin Gourley. These poems celebrate forests throughout the seasons, each one observing a different woodsy subject with an original twist: snow footprints are the “Forest News” (“Articles are printed / by critters on the go”); moss is “an emerald carpet”; even poison ivy is given attention (“One green / touch can itch / so much”). The watercolor illustrations reflect the thoughtful simplicity of the verse.
Subjects: Poetry; Forests and forestry; Nature
Vestergaard, Hope Digger, Dozer, Dumper
Gr. K–3 32 pp. Candlewick
Illustrated by David Slonim. These playful verses sing the praises of sixteen trucks and the work they do. The lighthearted acrylic and charcoal illustrations enhance the poems’ humor and give their subjects loads of personality. The same three children and friendly dog are pictured throughout, in drivers’ seats and working alongside their truck friends. The book will make light work of even the toughest storytimes.
Subjects: Poetry; Vehicles—Trucks
From the March 2014 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book.