The Beauty of the Beast : Poems from the Animal Kingdom
is a stunning collection of poems celebrating "the beauty and wonder of the animal kingdom." Poet and anthologist Jack Prelutsky has chosen 200 works by 123 poets from Carl Sandburg to Seamus Heaney, with a tip of the hat to his own "The Multilingual Mynah Bird." Not surprising for someone who grew up near the Bronx Zoo, Prelutsky has arranged the poems into five zoological classifications. The vibrant watercolor illustrations for this book were created by Meilo So, a brilliant Hong Kong-born artist. A welcome anthology for poetry lovers, watercolor enthusiasts, and children's book collectors alike. (Ages 8 and older)
From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 5?Beware?this book may let a zoo loose in your library! These poems are alive, from one set of endpapers to the other. Prelutsky has selected a remarkable array of poems full of movement and sound from primarily English and American contemporary writers, proving that he has as good an ear for other poets' work as he does for his own. Each page has several poems and bright watercolors that writhe with texture. From an explosion of insect color to a steady wintery stream of reindeer, Meilo So's illustrations lend a different mood to each spread and bind the selections more securely than paper and thread. Almost overwhelming at times, the pictures force readers to take it slow: this is a collection to savor for years, either as a read-alone or read-aloud. A well-designed, comprehensive, and satisfying book, this is certainly a superlative collection. Of smaller breadth, Ann Carter's Birds Beasts and Fishes (Macmillan, 1991) contains completely different poems in the same style, and complements this one nicely. In sound and sight, this book is a beauty.?Nina Lindsay, Vista School, Albany, CA
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