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I have been waiting for MONTHS for this book to come out, and although I was sorry to have to wait so long, I can tell you that it was well worth the wait. I'm so excited about it, in fact, that I've put up my Poetry Friday post on Thursday!

Joyce Sidman's poetry sings from the pages, paired with some of the most beautiful images I've seen in a while. Rick Allen evidently made them by combining the very old practice of block printing (using linoleum) with hand coloring and digital scanning. The illustration note in the front matter claims to have found a way to make all processes even slower than usual.

Though there is not a single poem devoted to the red fox, it's a bit of a "spot the fox" book. The fox on the cover can be found throughout the entire book, including in the final two spreads, where only its pawprints are visible. Poems about moose, chickadees, bees, beavers, skunk cabbage and more are combined with Rick Allen's gorgeous, evocative pictures in a perfect marriage of text and art.

Because the book is a nonfiction collection, each two-page spread also contains a text box with factual information about the plant or animal(s) depicted, and there's an index of interesting/difficult words in the back. Informative, yes, but did I mention that the poetry also sings? From the beavers' pantoum to the skunk cabbage's triolet to free verse to couplets and more, Joyce Sidman's use of language is both lovely and precise.

Here's an example. It's a two-page spread containing the poem "Dream of the Tundra Swan", which you can embiggen if you click on it.


I am terribly in love with this book, if you can't tell. It's perfect for anyone interested in excellent poetry, excellent artwork, excellent nonfiction, books about animals, or books about winter. And that's regardless of age level, but it's a must for elementary and middle school libraries, in my opinion.

For more Poetry Friday poems, click the box below:

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( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 14th, 2014 05:20 am (UTC)
Such a Lovely Book
We don't have winter here in my side of the world, but it is cold and i could imagine what lovely companion this book would be during the cold evenings.
I think what is fascinating and completely wonderful about this is the combination of poetry, facts and such lovely images. Thanks for sharing this book. I'll be on the look out for it.

Nov. 14th, 2014 05:17 pm (UTC)
Re: Such a Lovely Book
Thank you for stopping by - and I hope you find the book. It really is a thing of beauty!
Nov. 14th, 2014 12:56 pm (UTC)
This sounds divine and exquisite! Thanks for the wonderful review. :)
Nov. 14th, 2014 05:17 pm (UTC)
It truly is, Jama. You're going to love it.
Linda Baie
Nov. 14th, 2014 01:00 pm (UTC)
I have it, still haven't opened it, Kelly. The poem you shared about the geese rising in a billow of white-lovely.
Nov. 14th, 2014 05:17 pm (UTC)
The book is so pretty, Linda. I'm sure you will be thrilled once you get around to opening it!
Nov. 14th, 2014 11:36 pm (UTC)
I am SO looking forward to getting my hands on this book, Kelly. =)
Nov. 15th, 2014 05:36 pm (UTC)
It's really excellent!
Nov. 15th, 2014 11:28 am (UTC)
I agree on all counts!
This book is going to wear some shiny stickers, methinks!!
Nov. 15th, 2014 05:36 pm (UTC)
Re: I agree on all counts!
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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