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If: A Father's Advice to His Son Hardcover – March 27, 2007

6 customer reviews

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If: A Father's Advice to His Son + Kipling: Poems (Everyman's Library Pocket Poets)
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4–6—Kipling's powerful poem comes to life for a contemporary audience in atmospheric photographs that use the metaphor of sports. A lovely shot of a boy heading a soccer ball accompanies the opening couplet: "If you can keep your head/when all about you/are losing theirs/and blaming it on you…." The mood and actions in most of the illustrations clearly invoke the verse, although two are murky and enigmatic. Shadows and dispersed light are used artfully and, interestingly, all of the people have their backs to the camera or appear in profile; their anonymity confirms the sense of universality found in the poem. The attractive presentation includes an eye-catching cover, a blend of font sizes in alternating black or white print, and a judicious use of white space that gives the eye some rest between the many action-filled images. In a thoughtful afterword, Smith explains why he chose to interpret this particular poem. Teachers and parents will enjoy sharing this book with kids; it is a good vehicle to promote discussion.—Kirsten Cutler, Sonoma County Library, CA
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About the Author

Charles R. Smith, Jr. is an acclaimed poet and the Coretta Scott King Award-winning illustrator of My People, a picture book based on the poem by Langston Hughes. He is also the illustrator of If, the author and photographer of I Am the World, and he won the Coretta Scott King Author Honor for his book Twelve Rounds To Glory. He grew up in California and attended the Brooks Institute of Photography. A magazine and book cover photographer in addition to a picture book creator, Charles lives with his wife and kids in Poughkeepsie, New York. Visit him at CharlesRSmithJr.com.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 10 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 5
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers (March 27, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689877994
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689877995
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #529,265 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By wrl on January 7, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a nice attempt to bring Kipling's wisdom to life for youngsters. The book uses athletics as a springboard for illustrating the poem. It would, in my opinion, take an adult working with a child, discussing the text and the pictures for a child to gain and understanding or wisdom from this book.
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By Suzie Q on June 24, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If by Rudyard Kiipling is translated into a book with appropriate pictures and text. It is a good tool to aid in discussing the poem with children.
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By Ms. Jordan on March 12, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was a gift to my son for his son. They both loved it. If I had more grandsons I would get more of these books for all of my sons to give.
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