cover image Cup of Starshine: Poems and Pictures for Young Children

Cup of Starshine: Poems and Pictures for Young Children

Jill Bennett, J. Bennett. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P, $16.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-15-220982-7

Fuzzy-edged pastel illustrations overpower the poems in this eclectic collection. Anthropomorphic elephants, mice and camels as well as animated mittens, chairs and shower curtains call to mind Maurice Sendak on one hand and the sweetness and light of Edwardian fairy tales on the other. Since children frequently learn to read by looking at the printed words as they are being read to, they may have difficulty here: the poems are in relatively small print and fight for attention with Percy's art. Where pages are so busy, imaginations are not given free rein. And although the collection indicates no specific theme, Bennett's mix--from a Venda counting song to a Papago Indian poem about a corn cricket to Eve Merriam's ``A City Ditty'' with its surprise discovery of a silver lining--seems random and unfocused. Ages 2-6. (Oct.)