Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

R is for Rhyme: A Poetry Alphabet

R is for Rhyme: A Poetry Alphabet

Judy Young
Illustrator:  Victor Juhasz 
Nonfiction and Poetry Picture Book  Series
For ages 6 to 10
Sleeping Bear Press, 2006   ISBN: 978-1585362400

For many of us, rhymes and lines from poems form some of our earliest book memories. Mother Goose, Robert Lewis Stevenson's famous poems, "The Owl and the Pussycat," and many others all give us phrases that we remember well into adulthood. In this unique alphabet book, readers will get to meet a whole new set of poems, each one of which show us that poems have many different faces and and come in many different forms. Among others we meet a sonnet, a ballad, a haiku, a jingle, and a limerick. Then there are the parts of poems that give them their unique qualities; their rhymes, rhythms, their metaphors, narratives, quatrains, and free verse elements.

In this book, for every letter of the alphabet, the reader is given a poem to read, to enjoy, and to explore. Each poem serves to illustrate the words that represent the letters of the alphabet. This format makes it possible for the reader to actually see what iambic means, they can laugh at a limerick, and hear onomatopoeic words. The author includes an in depth description of each word that is written in prose. Among other things readers will learn when certain poetry forms are used, what effect they have, and what the history of the form is.

This book certainly is one of the most creative poetry picture books that has been published. It not only gives us poems to read, but it also helps us to better understand the whole wonderful world of poetry, and readers are able to see that poetry can convey a feeling or an impression in an unforgettable way.

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