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Lemonade: and Other Poems Squeezed from a Single Word Hardcover – March 15, 2011

4.6 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* As in previous titles, such as Snowy, Blowy Winter (2008) and Summer Wonders (2009), Raczka offers an accessible, playful poetry collection. This time, each selection is both a poem and a puzzle. As the whimsical subtitle states, every entry begins with a single-word title whose letters, when rearranged, make up the words in the following lines, as in “Bleachers”: “Ball / reaches / here / bases / clear / cheers.” Each poem appears twice: first, the letters, printed in an old-fashioned, typewriter font, are scattered individually across an open background, and readers must piece them together to make words. On the following page, the words are set in more traditional, easily read lines. “Pepperoni,” for example, begins with swirling, unconnected letters that resemble ingredients being sprinkled onto a pizza’s surface; on the next page, the letters are arranged in short lines: “One / pie / no / pepper / onion.” Doniger’s spare illustrations add quirky appeal without distracting from the inventive formations of type. More than just clever gimmicks, the poems leave room for moving lines with a depth that invites imaginative wandering: “A / silent / lion / tells / an ancient / tale,” reads “Constellation.” Sure to have wide classroom appeal. Grades 2-5. --Gillian Engberg

Review

“Doniger's spare illustrations add quirky appeal without distracting from the inventive formations of type. More than just clever gimmicks, the poems leave room for moving lines with a depth that invites imaginative wandering: ‘A / silent / lion / tells / an ancient / tale,' reads ‘Constellation.' Sure to have wide classroom appeal.” ―Starred, Booklist

“Readers of all ages will get a kick out of Bob Raczka's clever Lemonade . . . . This book will appeal to both poetry and puzzle lovers, no doubt motivating them to choose their own words and write some poems.” ―BookPage.com

“A clever, catchy, and challenging collection.” ―School Library Journal

“The lemonade here is cool and refreshing, and it makes you want to do some squeezing yourself in this playground where poet meets Scrabble nerd.” ―Horn Book

“Fun as a prompt for poetic exploration.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“This will be a natural as an inspiration for language arts assignments that appeal both to the wordily creative and the code-loving.” ―Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

“Raczka's poems are all produced from the letters in single words, magnifying and playing on their meanings . . . . there's a subtle humor and power at work in many ("friend" reads simply "fred/ finds/ ed"), and readers may be spurred to construct their own.” ―Publishers Weekly

“Raczka's Lemonade and other poems squeezed from one word will really kick the language arts curriculum up a notch. His poems turn traditional ideas of poetry upside down with word puzzles and word play. Each poem is like a mini-brainstorming session of new words and new ideas. It's a given that students will love creating their own one word poems about topics that they enjoy. Anyone who likes Wheel of Fortune, Hangman, or any sort of word game is going to adore this book.” ―Sally Walker, Anderson's Bookshop

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Roaring Brook Press (March 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596435410
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596435414
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.4 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,120,366 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
What a fantastic and intriguing book! Raczka has accomplished something completely new to me, in these poems made up of letters from a single word. This may be as revolutionary and ground-breaking as Marilyn Singer's reverso poems, introduced in last year's poetry hit, Mirror, Mirror: A Book of Reversible Verse.

Raczka credits Andrew Russ for his introduction to this one-word poetry form and explains how each letter appears beneath the letter of the original word. The overall effect is that of looking at a stuttering typewriter, or letters falling down like rain, forming words. There's a look to these poems almost like concrete poetry, with the careful typography proving that no additional letters have snuck in. It also means that each poem is a bit of a challenge - words and sentences aren't necessarily spaced in a traditional way. I think kids will love puzzling out what each poem says. Each poem is presented in its' original format, with a 2-color (red and black) line drawing on one page, followed by a page in red with white type, deciphering the poem in a more traditional way.

Here is one of my favorite poems in the book:

Moonlight

hot
night

thin
light

moth
in
motion

Simple, spare, effective and so true! I think this book would work well in classrooms, and I'd love to see the kind of one-word poems that this book will inspire. I highly recommend this amazing work.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a lovely book of poems - some really made me smile! I enjoy that they display each poem in two different ways and gives the reader ideas of how they can go about creating their own Lemonade poems!
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Format: Hardcover
The lady from Manhattan would like to register a complaint. The lady from Manhattan is aware, perfectly aware, that there are plenty of fabulous children's poets in a given year. The lady from Manhattan would further state that she likes many of these authors and would like to review them more often but she feels that her hand is forced, FORCED I say, to instead review the works of one Bob Raczka. This, in her opinion, is unfair. Mr. Raczka should do everything in his power to write significantly less interesting books of children's poetry. Perhaps he should consider a collection of bad limericks. That would certainly lower the bar enough for one to review his brethren with impunity. Instead, when a book like "Lemonade" comes across your plate, you have no choice but to review it. Brilliant and head-scratchingly insane by turns, Raczka writes one of the more inspiring books of poetry to come out in recent history. It really isn't fair in the least. The lady objects.

Take a word. Now find as many words as you can out of that word. Now take those words and make a cohesive, coherent, and downright good poem. Impossible? Not if you ask Bob Raczka. Inspired by poet Andrew Russ's "one-word poems", Raczka manages to find and write twenty-two such poems. Sometimes they are short (the poem "friends" really just boils down to "fred finds ed"). Sometimes they are longer than you'd expect ("spaghetti" starts with "papa has a pasta appetite"). And in each poem you have to read the letters as they appear under their starting words on one page, and then in order as a normal poem on the next. A clever literary technique yields even cleverer little poems. This is a premise that surpasses its initial gimmick.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The author does a good job using letters in the word "lemonade" to write descriptions about various topics. A great way to have students replicate the strategy to summarize and or describe phenomena.
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Format: Hardcover
A student of mine took this out from the library during our study of poetry. I had never heard of it before. I shared it with the class and ended up doing a great mini-lesson/bulletin board with it. Great book with endless possibilities!!
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