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Children's LiteraturePresented as a scrapbook, this collection of middle school poems is linked like pearls on a string by the narrative storyline of Christine Curtis, former coeditor of "Digital Poetry." The book opens with Christine, now a high school graduate, creating the scrapbook from the poems she and her classmates wrote during middle school. The author has captured the right tone and voice for the characters we meet through Christine's story and their own poems. We are told a bit about each character but learn much more through their own words, which reveal their true nature and deepest emotions. Christine opens with the poem that started the "Poetry War." She had become entirely disenchanted with boys and their attitudes, so she wrote a strongly worded poem and signed it "Athena the Warrior Goddess," then she plastered it on the doors on the sixth grade hall. The next day the walls of the sixth grade hall were plastered with poems from "Thor the Hammer God." Fortunately an astute librarian intercedes and recognizes that the students are hungry to express their feelings through poetry. The librarian establishes a poetry wall outside of the library. The wall quickly fills up and becomes a place for graffiti, so a web site is created and the students post their poems there (they are vetted and screened by Christine and her coeditor, Steven Gilley aka Thor) for the next three years. The poems themselves speak the concerns of young teens in voices that ring true and are unrestricted by pretensions. Steven's leukemia provides the reader a look at dealing with death from a younger perspective, but the presentation is so insightful it would be valuable to adults as well. The scrapbook illustrations werecreated by middle school students from P. K. Yonge Laboratory School in Gainesville, Florida. This book will be invaluable to all middle schools and will serve as the perfect model for stimulating interest in poetry and its creation. 2006, Maupin House, Ages 12 up.