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Review of Between the Lines

Between the Lines by Nikki Grimes Middle School, High School    Paulsen/Penguin    213 pp.    g 2/18    978-0-399-24688-3    $17.99 “Just step up, step up to the mike / and let your truth fly, loud, / proud, raw.” That’s what students are preparing to do in Mr. Ward’s high school class in the Bronx. Through poetry, they are […]

Haiku: A Small Poem with Great Potential

snow melting the village brimming over… with children! –Issa (1763-1828) (translated by David Lanoue) Yes, I was taught that a haiku, a short poem that originated in Japan centuries ago, was supposed to consist of three lines of five, seven, and five syllables. And yes, because of the way haiku have been taught historically, they […]

April 2018 Horn Book Herald: Spring News: Five questions for Margarita Engle

Poet Margarita Engle is the author of poetry collections (Bravo!: Poems About Amazing Hispanics), picture-book biographies (Drum Dream Girl: How One Girl’s Courage Changed Music; The Poet Slave of Cuba: A Biography of Juan Francisco Manzano), memoir (Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings), and works of historical fiction (Lion Island, Silver People, Hurricane Dancers, The […]

April 2018 Horn Book Herald: Spring News: Poetry Month

• Five Questions for Young People’s Poet Laureate Margarita Engle • The Power of Poetry (from Notes from the Horn Book), National Poetry Month 2018 (from Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book), and Poetry Reviews of the Week • How I Discovered YA Poetry by Marilyn Nelson • Haiku: A Small Poem with Great Potential […]

The power of poetry

April is National Poetry Month! The following books show how poetry can combine with illustrations to express all kinds of feelings, from love to uncertainty to pride in one’s heritage. For more, click the tag poetry and see our upcoming Horn Book Herald: Spring News e-newsletter, featuring our Five Questions interview with Young People’s Poet […]

On Rising

Fifty years ago today — April 4, 1968 — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. Andrea Davis Pinkney’s transcendent Martin Rising: Requiem for a King (Scholastic, 2018), brilliantly illustrated by her husband, Brian Pinkney, honors the civil rights icon’s life and work by shining light on his death. Roger calls the […]

National Poetry Month 2018

Alexander, Kwame  Animal Ark: Celebrating Our Wild World in Poetry and Pictures Gr. K–3     48 pp.     National Geographic Photographs by Joel Sartore. With Mary Rand Hess and Deanna Nikaido. Striking, detailed photographs of animals appear against black or white backgrounds as descriptive, sometimes metaphorical text plays loosely with the haiku form. Word placement and font […]

Review of In the Past

In the Past by David Elliott; 
illus. by Matthew Trueman Primary    Candlewick    48 pp.    g 3/18    978-0-7636-6073-4    $17.99 This collection of imaginative, clever poems about ancient animals, all but one extinct, moves chronologically from trilobites in the Cambrian era to woolly mammoths from our current geologic time period (Quaternary), with good representation across dinosaur, sea, […]

Review of Voices in the Air

Voices in the Air: Poems for Listeners by Naomi Shihab Nye Middle School    Greenwillow    208 pp.    g 2/18    978-0-06-269184-2    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-06-269186-6    $9.99 Many of Nye’s ninety-four original poems speak to historical and contemporary figures, from storied poets such as Yehuda Amichai, Lucille Clifton, José Emilio Pacheco, and Walt Whitman to a trusted Honolulu […]

Review of Martin Rising: Requiem for a King

Martin Rising: Requiem for a King by Andrea Davis Pinkney; 
illus. by Brian Pinkney Intermediate, Middle School    Scholastic    128 pp. 1/18    978-0-545-70253-9    $19.99 A creative poetic celebration of the contributions of Martin Luther King Jr. that also, as a song for the dead, includes a meticulous explanation of how and why he died. Henny Penny […]