Follow Follow

Written by Marilyn Singer and illustrated by Josee Masse

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5.5

Once upon a time, Mirror Mirror, a brilliant book of fairy tale themed reversos–a poetic form in which the poem is presented forward and then backward–became a smashing success. Now a second book is here with more witty double takes on well-loved fairy tales such as Thumbelina and The Little Mermaid. Read these clever poems from top to bottom and they mean one thing. Then reverse the lines and read from bottom to top and they mean something else–it is almost like magic! A celebration of sight, sound, and story, this book is a marvel to read again and again.

A Poem for Peter

Written by Andrea Davis Pinkney and illustrated by Steve Johnson, Lou Fancher

A celebration of the extraordinary life of Ezra Jack Keats, creator of The Snowy Day. The story of The Snowy Day begins more than one hundred years ago, when Ezra Jack Keats was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. The family were struggling Polish immigrants, and despite Keats’s obvious talent, his father worried that Ezra’s dream of being an artist was an unrealistic one. But Ezra was determined. By high school he was winning prizes and scholarships. Later, jobs followed with the WPA and Marvel comics. But it was many years before Keats’s greatest dream was realized and he had the opportunity to write and illustrate his own book. For more than two decades, Ezra had kept pinned to his wall a series of photographs of an adorable African American child. In Keats’s hands, the boy morphed into Peter, a boy in a red snowsuit, out enjoying the pristine snow; the book became The Snowy Day, winner of the Caldecott Medal, the first mainstream book to feature an African American child. It was also the first of many books featuring Peter and the children of his — and Keats’s — neighborhood. Andrea Davis Pinkney’s lyrical narrative tells the inspiring story of a boy who pursued a dream, and who, in turn, inspired generations of other dreamers.

Mirror Mirror

Written by Marilyn Singer and illustrated by Josee Masse

What’s brewing when two favorites—poetry and fairy tales—are turned (literally) on their heads? It’s a revolutionary recipe: an infectious new genre of poetry and a lovably modern take on classic stories. First, read the poems forward (how old-fashioned!), then reverse the lines and read again to give familiar tales, from Sleeping Beauty to that Charming Prince, a delicious new spin. Witty, irreverent, and warm, this gorgeously illustrated and utterly unique offering holds a mirror up to language and fairy tales, and renews the fun and magic of both.

One Big Rain

Written by Rita Gray and illustrated by Ryan O Rourke

Rita Gray has compiled twenty poems about precipitation, each written by well-known poets such as Kyoshi, Eve Merriam, Lilian Moore, and Carl Sandburg. Divided into poems written about rain within each of the four seasons, this compilation offers the reader a chance to revel in the beauty of precipitation and the poetry it inspires. The variety of poems opens the door for discussion of poetic styles, while Ryan O’Rourke’s playful yet sophisticated illustrations will appeal to readers of all ages.

Wake Up, Sleepy Head!

Written by Mandy Ross and illustrated by Dubravka Kolanovic

A collection of short poems that capture the thoughts and feelings of young animals as their mothers try to wake them up.

Animal Exercises

Written by Mandy Ross and illustrated by Sanja Rescek

A collection of poems describes how familiar animals keep in shape.

Otto the Owl Who Loved Poetry

Written and illustrated by Vern Kousky

An owl with an unusual passion learns to shine in this fresh, funny debut picture book introducing a poetry-loving owl whom kids will cheer for. Otto loves poetry—Keats, Rossetti, Dickinson, even T. S. Eliot. He prefers reading to roosting and reciting to hunting. Ordinarily, this wouldn’t be a problem. But, you see, Otto is an owl. When the other owls begin to make fun of Otto, he embarks on a difficult journey, finding along the way both his inner poet and a community that accepts him for who he is. Celebrating courage and the importance of sticking with your passion, and incorporating an engaging mix of original and famous poems, Vern Kousky has created an enchanting and inviting world—a forest filled with the sounds of poetry.

Lola Plants a Garden

Written by Anna McQuinn and illustrated by Rosalind Beardshaw

How does your garden grow? Book-loving Lola is inspired by a collection of garden poems that she reads with her mommy. She wants to plant her own garden of beautiful flowers, so she and Mommy go to the library to check out books about gardening. They choose their flowers and buy their seeds. They dig and plant. And then they wait. Lola finds it hard to wait for her flowers to grow, but she spends the time creating her own flower book. Soon she has a garden full of sunflowers and invites all of her friends for cakes and punch and a story amongst the flowers. Lola is a beloved character that continues to shine for young readers. Her curiosity and love of books is infectious. Parents and children love sharing Lola’s stories. Rosalind Beardshaw’s beautiful illustrations highlight Lola’s close-knit family and how they use stories and books to interact with their world. Lola’s brightly colored and growing garden is the perfect surrounding for this bright little girl.

Kindergarten, Here I Come!

Written by D.J. Steinberg and illustrated by Mark Chambers

Get ready for school with these fun poems! This adorable picture book celebrates all the familiar milestones and moments shared by every single kindergartener. Whether it’s the first-day-of-school jitters or the hundredth-day-of-school party, every aspect of the kindergarten experience is introduced with a light and funny poem–not to mention charming illustrations.

Stepping Out

Written by Lin Oliver and illustrated by Tomie dePaola

Capturing the magic and fun of early childhood, this lively collection of poems, from the creators of Little Poems for Tiny Ears, is a book to be treasured. Being a preschooler means days full of discovery every time you step out of your door. It’s a time filled with wonder, at all the sights and sounds of the outdoors and at the huge variety of people there are to meet. This collection of nineteen original poems features little ones eager to explore, whether it’s splashing in puddles, riding in an elevator or through a car wash, or visiting the library. They go full-steam ahead to the park, the beach, and dance class, somewhat begrudgingly learn to share and get their first haircut, and enjoy lots of time with their families. Full of contagious rhythm and rhyme, this inviting picture book introduces young children to the sounds of poetry through familiar childhood activities, and beloved illustrator Tomie dePaola’s engaging children are the perfect match for Lin Oliver’s bouncy poems.

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