I Am the Book

Yayo, Illustrator, Lee Bennett Hopkins, Selected by
Selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins, illus. by Yayo, Holiday House, $16.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8234-2119-0
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Lest we forget the magic of the printed page, this collection of poems by contemporary writers celebrates the joys of reading. "Early in the morning/ dog, book and me/ spend quiet moments/ just we three," writes Karen Winnick. In "Pirates," Jill Corcoran conveys a book-inspired imaginative journey: "I storm/ toward shackled screams/ of a kidnapped damsel./ I swashbuckle through my book's/ CHAPTER TWO." In Yayo's acrylic spreads, an open book becomes a whale's tail, a treasure box, and a drifting raft, emphasizing the transformative potential of words. Tom Robert Shields's title poem underscores the message: "I'll plant in you/ a spring-seedling/ with bursting life/ while you are reading./ I am the book/ You are needing." Ages 4–8. (Mar.)
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