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Review of Lion of the Sky: Haiku for All Seasons

Lion of the Sky: Haiku for All Seasons by Laura Purdie Salas; illus. by Mercè López Primary    Millbrook    32 pp. 4/19    978-1-5124-9809-7    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5415-4383-6    $19.99 Salas presents a volume of “riddle-ku” poems, a form that is a cross between riddles, haiku, and “mask poems” (poems narrated by “something nonhuman”). The book is divided […]

Review of Poetree

Poetree by Shauna LaVoy Reynolds; illus. by Shahrzad Maydani Primary    Dial    32 pp.    g 3/19    978-0-399-53912-1    $17.99 To celebrate the end of winter, young poetry lover Sylvia writes a poem about spring and ties it to a birch tree in the park. The next day her poem is gone; in its place is another that […]

Review of The Undefeated

The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander; illus. by Kadir Nelson Primary, Intermediate, Middle School     Versify/Houghton     40 pp.    g 4/19     978-1-328-78096-6     $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-358-05761-1     $12.99 Alexander and Nelson honor the achievements, courage, and perseverance of ordinary black people as well as prominent black artists, athletes, and activists. The free-verse poem begins: “This is for the unforgettable. / […]

April 2019 Horn Book Herald: Spring News: National Poetry Month

• Five Questions for Margarita Engle • “How I Discovered YA Poetry” by Marilyn Nelson • What Makes Good Poetry? e-newsletter • Roger Talks with Andrea Davis Pinkney (video) and with Nikki Giovanni and Ashley Bryan • Be “the Hero and the Author” of Your Story: Elizabeth Acevedo at Simmons University • Recommended Poetry Titles […]

Review of Voices: The Final Hours of Joan of Arc

Voices: The Final Hours of Joan of Arc by David Elliott High School    Houghton    191 pp.    g 3/19    978-1-328-98759-4    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-358-04915-9    $9.99 In this verse novel, “voices” refers to Joan of Arc’s messages from the saints; to the various people who testified for and against her; to Joan herself; and to the objects […]

Happy National Poetry Month 2019!

April is National Poetry Month. These illustrated collections for primary and intermediate readers show the variety of forms poetry can take (hello, riddle-ku!) and topics it can cover — from melting snowmen to creativity-unlocking pencils and more. For more on poetry from The Horn Book, see the tags National Poetry Month and poetry. Snowman – […]

Review of Snowman − Cold = Puddle: Spring Equations

Snowman − Cold = Puddle: Spring Equations by Laura Purdie Salas; illus. by Micha Archer Primary    Charlesbridge    32 pp. 2/19    978-1-58089-798-3    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-1-63289-643-8    $9.99 This whimsical celebration of spring-time features a playful equation poem on every page. Take the titular “snowman – cold = puddle.” It’s a subtraction sentence — minus the usual […]

National Poetry Month 2019

Bulion, Leslie  Leaf Litter Critters Gr. 4–6     56 pp.     Peachtree Illustrated by Robert Meganck. Nineteen poems (in various forms) accompanied by bright digital illustrations provide information both whimsical and scientific about inhabitants of the brown food web — the layer of leaves and soil where organic matter breaks down and plants grow. Each poem is […]

Review of The Proper Way to Meet a Hedgehog: And Other How-To Poems

The Proper Way to Meet a Hedgehog: And Other How-To Poems selected by Paul B. Janeczko; illus. by Richard Jones Primary    Candlewick    48 pp.    g 3/19    978-0-7636-8168-5    $17.99 The thirty-three poems in this “how-to” collection range from the whimsical, such as Monica Shannon’s “How to Tell Goblins from Elves,” to the very practical, such as […]

Review of No More Poems!: A Book in Verse That Just Gets Worse

No More Poems!: A Book in Verse That Just Gets Worse by Rhett Miller; illus. by Dan Santat Primary, Intermediate    Tingley/Little, Brown    48 pp. 3/19    978-0-316-41652-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-316-41649-8    $9.99 Miller, lead singer/songwriter of the alt-country band Old 97’s, knows how to grab an audience’s attention. This collection of twenty-three kid-pleasing poems opens with […]