Gr 4 Up-An anthology of 86 riddles by a wide range of poets, including Jonathan Swift, Lewis Carroll, Emily Dickinson, and Mother Goose. Answers appear upside down on the bottom of each page. This is a sophisticated collection that will challenge better readers, but leave the average fan of riddle books mystified. Similar compilations are William Jay Smith's Behind the King's Kitchen Door (Wordsong, 1992) and Monika Beisner's Monika Beisner's Book of Riddles (Farrar, 1983). The format of Livingston's title is not inviting. The black-and-white cartoon sketches that appear at the beginning of each section are as esoteric as many of the riddle rhymes themselves.-Sally R. Dow, Ossining Public Library, NY
Don't look here for knock-knock jokes. Livingston has assembled 86 riddles from the pens of such writers as Jonathan Swift, Robert Frost, Carl Sandburg, and Emily Dickinson. The appealing cover, which features a fractured pharaoh and other cartoon-style figures, gives the book a young, fun look that is not, however, carried out in the unembroidered layout. Short riddles often appear at the top of the page, leaving the rest blank save for the upside-down answer. Occasional full-page ink drawings break up the text. Some of the riddles will be easy for kids to answer, others almost impossible. Though children may find some amusement here, this may be best used by teachers who want an interesting way to bring poetry, language, and deductive reasoning into the classroom.