Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night

( 3 )

Overview

A 2011 Newbery Honor Book

 


Come feel the cool and shadowed breeze,
come smell your way among the trees,
come touch rough bark and leathered leaves:
Welcome to the night.

Welcome to the night, where mice stir and furry moths flutter. Where snails spiral into shells...

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Overview

A 2011 Newbery Honor Book

 


Come feel the cool and shadowed breeze,
come smell your way among the trees,
come touch rough bark and leathered leaves:
Welcome to the night.

Welcome to the night, where mice stir and furry moths flutter. Where snails spiral into shells as orb spiders circle in silk. Where the roots of oak trees recover and repair from their time in the light. Where the porcupette eats delicacies—raspberry leaves!—and coos and sings.

Come out to the cool, night wood, and buzz and hoot and howl—but do beware of the great horned owl—for it’s wild and it’s windy way out in the woods!

This Newbery Honor-winning picture book combines beautifully written poetry with facts of the forest and elaborate illustrations to form a marvelously engaging collection.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
"Welcome to the night!" cries the opening poem in this celebration of nocturnal life. Everything from snails to mushrooms has a role to play and something different to say (the title is taken from a concrete poem about a horned owl, narrated by its would-be prey: "Perched missile,/ almost invisible, you/ preen silent feathers,/ swivel your sleek satellite/ dish of a head"). Spiders offer advice, porcupettes pirouette, and the moon laments the dawn, all illuminated by debut talent Allen's detailed yet moody prints, which encapsulate the mysteries and magic of the midnight hours. Opposite each poem is a short note on the featured creature, explaining its appearance and habits. In Sidman's delicious poems, darkness is the norm, and there's nothing to fear but the rising sun. Ages 6-9. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
"Allen's detailed yet moody prints encapsulate the mysteries and magic of the midnight hours. In Sidman's delicious poems, darkness is the norm, and there's nothing to fear but the rising sun."—Publishers Weekly, starred review

"This is a fine collection for classroom use at any time, but it'll bring extra impact to those who can find a way to share it at dusk with the lights dimmed, watching through the windows as the nocturnal ballet begins outside."—The Bulletin, starred review

"This picture book combines lyrical poetry and compelling art with science concepts."—Booklist, starred review

"The dark lines of Allen's skillful lino cut prints make the perfect accompaniment to a book of night poems, with their subtle colors allowing the reader to seek out the creatures slowly, just as one's eye becomes accustomed to finding things in the dark."—The Horn Book, starred review

"The bookmaking is beautiful with the concept of night lending itself generously to poetry. "—School Library Journal

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
With "Welcome to the Night," the first of twelve deftly crafted and both visually and emotionally evocative poems, Sidman begins a journey from dusk to dawn. Through a variety of verse forms, from rhymes with refrains and free verse to concrete poetry, we encounter places and creatures in action in the dark of night. Each: raccoon, snail, moth, owl, trees, spiders, porcupines, crickets, mushrooms, bats, and moon, tells its nighttime story on one side of the double page with vignette illustration. Across the gutter along with the full page illustration comes a sidebar of factual information on the subject. On the final wordless page, the sun rises over the forest for a new day. This scene is the same one that begins the nocturnal adventure, but here the owl that was in flight now rests on a quiet branch, while the corner of the house on the side formerly glowing in the sunset now takes on a bish tone in the early orange sunlight. Allen's striking illustrations are produced in relief printing, a complex process described in detail on the copyright page. They retain considerable black to shape the flora and fauna, leaving sufficient space for the intense colors printed from additional wood blocks. Although naturalistic, they convey the emotional quality of the poems. There is a glossary of terms included. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
Gr 3–6—Myra Lucretia Taylor expressively reads Joyce Sidman's lush verse (Houghton Mifflin, 2010) in a warm and soothing voice that adds to the poems' nocturnal mood. She subtly differentiates between the poems and the narratives that are interspersed between them. Listeners are first drawn in by the lyrical "Welcome to the Night," which is followed by an introduction to the nocturnal world and to the raccoon's adaptations that make it a successful night hunter. In each of the following ten poems, an animal or plant is introduced and its night habits are explored in a variety of poetic forms. Then, in a brief prose paragraph, additional information about the night dweller and new vocabulary are presented. For example, after "Crickets Speak," we are told about the mechanics of stridulation—producing a shrill sound by rubbing body parts together. Listeners learn how snails build their shell, what a porcupette is and how it grows, how orb spiders spin webs, how owls hunt their prey, and much more. Finally, "Moon's Lament" closes the nighttime tour. The book's glossary is not included in the recording. The Newbery Honor book's gorgeous, detailed linoleum print illustrations by Rick Allen are as beautiful as the poems, so be sure to have it available to use in tandem with the recording. The second track includes page-turning signals. The expressive, engaging poems and the rich and interesting factual information will attract students interested in nature as well as poetry.—MaryAnn Karre, Horace Mann and Thomas Jefferson Schools, Binghamton, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780547152288
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 9/6/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 207,697
  • Age range: 6 - 9 Years
  • Lexile: 1020L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 10.60 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Joyce Sidman lives in Wayzata, Minnesota. www.joycesidman.com

Rick Allen makes his Houghton Mifflin picture book debut with this very book. He produces myriad printed ephemerae at The Kenspeckle Letterpress in Duluth, Minnesota. www.kenspeckleletterpress.com.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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(1)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2012

    It ok

    These book is ok i think becuz it small and i can't really under stand as i would or want to

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2011

    Terific

    Very much good

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    Umm idk wat 2 say cuz im not a kid

    The title seems intarestin

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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