Total Pageviews

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Beastly Verse, collected and illustrated by Joohee Yoon. Enchanted Lion Books, Publishers Group Canada. 2015. $18.95 ages 5 and up

"Be careful what
You say or do
When you visit the animals
At the Zoo.
Treat them as well
As they do you,
And you'll always be welcome
At the Zoo.

-Eileen Mathias"

How wonderful to see this collection of older poems, dating from the 19th to the mid-20th century, collected and illustrated by skilled printmaker Joohee Yoon! It is her debut picture book; yet, it is a masterful accomplishment.

Children, as you know, love animals and creatures. These poems have a childlike freedom and friendly feel for sharing on countless occasions. Many are new to me, and that just made the discoveries even more appealing. Of course, there are some 'old' favorites as well.


Once there was an elephant ,
Who tried to use the telephant -
No! No! I mean an elephone
Who tried to use the telephone -
(Dear me! I am not certain quite
That even now I've got it right.)

Howe'er it was, he got his trunk
Entangled in the telephunk;
The more he tried to get it free,
The louder buzzed the telephee -
(I fear I'd better drop this song
of elephop and telephong!)

-Laura E. Richards"

I taught that poem to my kindergartners every year. They were 'squeally' to share it with their families once they had aced it! I can hardly wait to watch my granddaughter's joy as she experiences the word fun.

I could  go on sharing other favorites from this collection. I would rather tell you about the incredible artwork 'created by hand drawing and computer techniques. Three Pantone colors were used in the printing of this book.'

Three colors? How is it possible to do create such brilliant images with only three colors ... cyan, magenta, and yellow? Overlapping establishes the secondary colors and enhances the surprise of the illustrations created in such a beautifully inspired way. The wild delight of its crowded pages will surely encourage a concentrated observation of every single spread. They are energetic, bold in design, and impossible to ignore as you read each well-chosen poem. Children will be intrigued by the many details that are meant to entice them while sharing the 16 poems chosen. The gatefolds add to the fun and provide a sense of movement that will inspire animated conversation.


Some birds lay eggs in towering trees,
And some in fens conceal them;
The hen seeks friendlier haunts than these,
Where every child can steal them.

-Arthur Waugh"

The size of the collection is 'just right' for its intended audience. The artwork inspires a connection that will be much appreciated by little ones who love to see such glorious representation of the words they are hearing.

Quite spectacular and oh, so impressive!

It's a perfect ending for the month long celebration of poetry in its many forms and presentations. Thanks for reading. I hope that you have made many new discoveries.                                            

No comments:

Post a Comment