Animals in Surprising Shades
Poems About Earth's Colorful Creatures
by Susan Johnston Taylor, Illustrated by Annie Bakst
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Pub Date 28 Mar 2023 | Archive Date Not set
Rosy pinks, regal blues, radiant greens
Adorn birds, bugs, snails, slugs.
Instead of paint on canvas,
Nature colors feathers, fur, skin, scales.
But if some see these creatures as
Oddball or off-the-wall,
Why not delight in their whimsy and wonder?
For young poets who love science and young scientists who love poetry, this thoughtful collection of poems about fascinating and colorful creatures found throughout the world invites readers to linger and wonder on every page. Learn why the Blue-footed Booby puts on a special dance or how the Picasso Bug uses its masterful chemical defense against predators. Explore simple and fun poetic forms like the tanka, haiku, and quatrain. Just be sure to take good notes! An interactive component rewards practicing poets seeking to challenge themselves further.
With gorgeous illustrations and a rainbow of colors to complement the lyrical and engaging text, this book will fit nicely on the shelves of any classroom or library where kids are interested in science, writing or the arts.
From School Library Journal
Gr 1–2—This engaging collection of poems explores science and literature to describe some of the world's more colorful creatures. Short, inviting poems geared for elementary students combine clever and engaging phrasing with facts about the creatures described. For instance, "Pink Manta Ray" begins: "In a/ sea of teal,/ a blink of pink!" Text on the opposite side of the spread explains that a pink manta ray was first spotted in 2015 and shares scientists' theories about the creature's unusual coloring. The poem is written in the shape of a manta ray, and a separate block of text notes that "A concrete poem takes the physical shape of the subject, like this manta ray." Other poetic forms, such as haiku, tanka, and quatrain, are used and defined with other poems. An interactive component quiz challenges practicing poets further by asking, mid-book, "Can you match the poems on the pages that follow with the correct poetic form presented in the first part of this book?" Answers are in the back, along with a glossary and a list of sources. Poems are accompanied by bright and engaging illustrations described as "traditional gouache drawing and paintings…enhanced digitally in the artwork of each page." These colorful spreads are a lovely complement to the lively poems. This combination of science and poetry should delight young readers, encourage young writers, and spur interest in young scientists. VERDICT A STEAM-themed poetry collection that should have broad appeal for young readers and will be a welcome addition to the shelves. Recommended.—Carole Phillips
Average rating from 6 members
Thank you, Gnome Road Publishing, for the advance reading copy.
I find the colourful graphic illustrations really good. They do stand out. I find the information given on the few beings informative and ideal for the reading age group.
However, I wish there were more.
But good nevertheless!
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