Summer: An Alphabet Acrostic

Overview

Sandy beaches, juicy watermelons, and porch swings are just a few of the warm-weather delights featured in this inventive alphabet of acrostic poems about summer. Like the previous seasonal collaborations from Steven Schnur and Leslie Evans, Autumn and Spring, this book contains twenty-six poems, alphabetically arranged. Each reveals a playful acrostic when read vertically, and each is accompanied by a glowing woodcut illustration.

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Summer: An Alphabet Acrostic

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Overview

Sandy beaches, juicy watermelons, and porch swings are just a few of the warm-weather delights featured in this inventive alphabet of acrostic poems about summer. Like the previous seasonal collaborations from Steven Schnur and Leslie Evans, Autumn and Spring, this book contains twenty-six poems, alphabetically arranged. Each reveals a playful acrostic when read vertically, and each is accompanied by a glowing woodcut illustration.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...as blissfully evocative as it is technically accomplished. Should be inspiration for classrooms, poets, and wordworkers." Kirkus Reviews

This attractive companion to Autumn (1997) and Spring (1999) combines clever acrostic word poems with glowing linoleum-cut prints by Leslie Evans, one page for each letter of the alphabet. Caught by the word game of reading letters vertically, children will also enjoy the simple physicality of the brief poems and the bright active pictures that capture the fun and beauty of the season. One of the best is Beach (Blankets and umbrellas/Endless miles of sand/And the/Constant/ Hum of wind and waves"). There's a sense of the season's passing as Yawls and sailboats are hauled out of the water, and the stars of autumn can be seen in the clear Zodiac of the sky. The setting is a cabin the mountains close by a glittering blue lake, but the images reach out everywhere. Crossword buffs will enjoy the play and so will readers, writers, and artists in classrooms and libraries, especially in summer.
Booklist, ALA

This concept book features a short poem in which the first letter of each line spells out the word it represents. "Daisy" becomes "Dragonflies dart/And hover/Inspecting white flowers with/Sunlike/Yellow centers." The sheer inventiveness of each poem is impressive, but most of them flow effectively, avoiding the forced rhythm that the acrostic form can impose. Neatly framed linoleum-block illustrations feature rich colors and bold lines that capture the brightness of the days. The progression from A to Z coincides with a move toward fall. Most, but not all of the illustrations feature a girl and her dog, adding to the impression that the readers are moving through a particular summer rather than simply getting a list of relevant items. The clever wordplay combined with the vibrant aura of summer captured in the art and poetry make this an appealing title.
School Library Journal

Winsome summertime images of beaches, hiking, and picnics are captured in hand-colored linoleum block illustrations and brief free verse peoms that celebrate the season, from "the longest days of the year" to the appearance of "autumn's twinkling constellations." Horn Book Guide

Leonard Marcus
The last days of winter are a good time to dream of summer's picnics, band concerts and other simmple, school-free pleasures. Keyed to the alphabet, these 26 acrostic poems and the stylized linoleum block cuts that accompany them whet our appetite for the warmest months.
Parenting
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Steven Schnur adds Summer, illus. by Leslie Evans, to his list of acrostic poetry collections that already includes Autumn and Spring. Bright beach umbrellas and tiger lilies fill the linoleum-cut illustrations; they capture summer days where "Fourth of July banners wave from/ Lampposts, front porches,/ And the village/ Grandstand as the parade/ Streams by." The mainstays from Memorial Day to Labor Day--the beach, mosquitoes, a lighthouse--are all here. ( Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
From The Critics
Share this wonderful collection of summer acrostic poems with your young readers and see if they notice any patterns. This book is beautifully illustrated. A great teacher resource for teaching acrostics. 2001, Clarion Books, $15.00. Ages 5 to 10. Reviewer: M. Thomas SOURCE: Parent Council, September 2001 (Vol. 9, No. 1)
Children's Literature
Close your eyes and let childhood images of summer flow freely into your mind's eye. This is the effect of this series of acrostics. Each page springs us into the glowing warmth of the season, enticing us outdoors and into New England-like action. Nap under the shade of a striped canopy. Hum with the wind and waves along a sandy beach. Admire the dance of the morning sparkle on the lake from a secluded cabin. Dart from daisy to daisy with the whimsical dragonfly. Twist and entwine yourself up the staircase with red and purple clusters of grapes. Hike amid the tall pines. Doze idly with a Black Lab above the emerald grass in a swinging hammock. Race the wind in an eager sailboat. Celebrate the flash of the fireflies from a porch swing. Notice the chunky trunks beginning to stack under the window, readying for fireside chats and cooler nights. Crisp images embrace us, capturing our memories and inviting us to bask in the glow of summer. Interesting vocabulary and a unique acrostic style make this an excellent model for the creative writing classroom. Joined with Schnur and Evans' Autumn and Spring, the set also makes for an inspiring study of the seasons. 2001, Clarion Books, $15.00. Ages 3 to 12. Reviewer: Leslie Julian
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-This concept book features a short poem in which the first letter of each line spells out the word it represents. "Daisy" becomes "Dragonflies dart/And hover,/Inspecting white flowers with/Sunlike/Yellow centers." The sheer inventiveness of each poem is impressive, but most of them flow effectively, avoiding the forced rhythm that the acrostic form can impose. Neatly framed linoleum-block illustrations feature rich colors and bold lines that capture the brightness of the days. The progression from A to Z coincides with a move toward fall. Most, but not all of the illustrations feature a girl and her dog, adding to the impression that readers are moving through a particular summer, rather than simply getting a list of relevant items. The clever wordplay combined with the vibrant aura of summer captured in the art and poetry make this an appealing title.-Steven Engelfried, Deschutes County Library, Bend, OR Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780618023721
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 3/28/2001
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Edition description: None
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.59 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.41 (d)

Meet the Author

Leslie Evans has illustrated several books and also makes prints and broadsides in her letterpress studio in Massachusetts, where she lives.
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