Spring: A Haiku Story

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-This electrically bright and cheerful collection of haiku poems has been cleverly fashioned to appeal to young readers. The illustrations depict two children going for a spring walk, loosely connecting the poems to a simple story. The selections are taken, for the most part, from classic anthologies. The gouache paintings glow with color-orange, red, spring green, and bright blue and yellow. The selector and the artist seem to have made a definite effort to contrast what is commonly thought of as the delicate art of haiku with the firmly based-in-America visual impact of the book. Its vibrant colors depict a blond girl and black boy walking in an American landscape, and in the first picture are shown standing next to an American flag. Two other notable collections, Molly Bang's Red Dragonfly on My Shoulder (HarperCollins, 1992) and Demi's In the Eyes of the Cat (Holt, 1992), are illustrated in an oriental style. Shannon and Zeldis's book takes a different approach, and is designed for younger children. With its selections and bold paintings, Spring underlines haiku's strength and robust qualities, beckoning readers to try their hand at it, too. Only a couple of the poems included here are duplicated in the other two titles. Although both of those works are outstanding, this one should also find a place on library shelves.-Judith Constantinides, East Baton Rouge Parish Main Library, LA
Carolyn Phelan
Shannon presents 14 Japanese haiku translated by different writers and arranged to represent moments on a walk in early spring. Although the poems are traditional, the artwork seems almost a reaction against the restraint of most haiku illustrations. Using her folk-art style and hot colors in vibrant combinations, Zeldis creates a series of eye-catching pictures that, while striking and original, sometimes overwhelm the verse. Still, libraries with a demand for illustrated books of haiku poetry for children may want to offer this unusual interpretation.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688138882
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/21/1996
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.77 (w) x 8.71 (h) x 0.38 (d)

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