Grade 2-6-Nine narrative poems full of humor and imagination. From speculations on the wisdom that one might acquire on growing up and growing old to addressing the ultimate folly of having all one's wishes come true, these selections are thoughtful and far-reaching. The language is rich with alliteration, rhyme, similes, and descriptive imagery. Light and fanciful illustrations in ink and watercolor complement the whimsy of the selections. Clean, crisp pages with plenty of space surrounding spot and full-page art, printed on heavy, quality paper, afford an attractive, stylish look. This book is slightly reminiscent of X. J. Kennedy's The Forgetful Wishing Well (Atheneum, 1985; o.p.), another touching, wistful, and often very funny title. Each reading of The Wishing Bone reveals new layers of its poems, leaving readers with much to ponder.
Sally R. Dow, Ossining Public Library, NY
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Gr. 3-6. Here's a lovely piece of bookmaking that combines poems that are both whimsical and thought-provoking with delightful ink-and-watercolor pictures that spill across the pages. A young girl can hardly wait until she grows up and becomes wise: "I'll know if needles shut their eyes." When she comes upon a wishing bone, amazing things start happening. For example, a kangaroo is in court, and only the promise of a table of delicious desserts helps the jury reach its conclusion. Interspersed are metaphysical questions, right at a kid's level ("How many inches in a year / What makes a zero disappear?"), to balance the nonsense with ideas to make readers think. The pictures, reminiscent of Wendy Halperin's work, sparkle and will lead children quickly and easily into the words. Ilene Cooper
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The book has an "old-fashioned" feel in a good sense. Stephen Mitchell has that almost extinct, rare skill of writing great children's poetry with regular rhyme and rhythm. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Emily Dickinson