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Saturday, April 2, 2011

I Am The Book, written by Lee Bennett Hopkins and illustrated by Yayo. Holiday House, Thomas Allen. 2011 $19.95 ages 5 and up

"Early in the morning
dog, book and me
spend quiet moments
just we three.

Snuggled by the window,
chin on my knee
close to the raindrops,
dog, book and me."

What a perfect way to begin this new collection! This lovely poem called Quiet Morning was written by Karen B. Winnick and evokes a feeling of peaceful calm to begin a new day. Isn't that the way they all should start? I love to spend the first hour of my day reading.

This book was gifted to me by a dear friend who knows how I love books, and is unbelievably adept at finding books for me that I have not yet seen. So, it will have a special place within my poetry collection. Thanks, Jan!

The poems assembled for this anthology total thirteen and each celebrates the joy that comes to readers from the books they choose to read. Imaginative journeys, quiet places, the ability to ignore everything that is happening around you, and even the definition of a poem through the eyes of master poet Jane Yolen find pride of place in Hopkins' latest book.

Here's my favorite for today:

"Wonder Through the Pages
Karla Kuskin

So I picked out a book
on my own
from the shelf
and I started to read
on my own
to myself.
And nonsense and knowledge
came tumbling out,
whispering mysteries,
history's shout,
the wisdom of wizards,
the songs of the ages,
all wonders of wandering
wonderful pages."

What inspired word choice and a perfect description of the joys readers find in books day in and day out!

The artwork is done in bright, bold colors and enchants the reader while inviting close and careful observation. Yayo's vivid acrylics expand on the meaning and fires the imagination to perfectly match the poet's words. In the back matter, Lee Bennett Hopkins provides an additional section to introduce each of the featured poets, sharing tidbits of information that add to the appeal.  

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