cover image Moon Frog: Animal Poems for Young Children

Moon Frog: Animal Poems for Young Children

Richard Edwards. Candlewick Press (MA), $16.95 (48pp) ISBN 978-1-56402-116-8

In the title verse of this uneven collection, the moon slides ``down the sky'' low enough for a frog to leap on and ride ``like a jockey on a horse.'' Although these rhythmic poems typically describe such original and creative situations, they frequently seem devoid of fresh language and substantive context. Like oddly detached snippets that lack a lyric poem's concentrated point of view or a narrative poem's action, Edwards's prosaic descriptions seem disconnected or not fully developed. Too often the rhymes seem strained (``You might make a mistake when you / Pick up the peeled fruit to chew'') and in general the paintings are visually richer than the language they illustrate. Fox-Davies's ( Little Beaver and the Echo ) detailed watercolor and pencil illustrations are varied and handsomely designed, if rather uninspired in their choice of subject or method of presentation. Ages 4-up. (Mar. )