The Fish Is Me!: Bathtime Rhymes

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This bubbly book of bathtime verse is a must for every waterbaby. Neil Philip’s joyous compilation for the very young features traditional rhymes as well as contemporary selections. Even kids who hate taking baths will be reaching for their rubber duckies and washcloths, inspired by the words of such poets as Carl Sandburg, Aileen Fisher, and Douglas Florian. Bright, colorful illustrations by Claire Henley perfectly complement the poems’ delightful silliness.

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Overview

This bubbly book of bathtime verse is a must for every waterbaby. Neil Philip’s joyous compilation for the very young features traditional rhymes as well as contemporary selections. Even kids who hate taking baths will be reaching for their rubber duckies and washcloths, inspired by the words of such poets as Carl Sandburg, Aileen Fisher, and Douglas Florian. Bright, colorful illustrations by Claire Henley perfectly complement the poems’ delightful silliness.

A collection of poems about bathtime, by such authors as Aileen Fisher, Martin Gardner, Caryl Brahms, and John Drinkwater.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Like the Mother Goose rhymes, these will hook children. Big, brightly colored pictures on every page express universal delight." Booklist, ALA
Publishers Weekly
Readers rub-a-dub-dub with The Fish Is Me: Bathtime Rhymes, selected by Neil Philip, illus. by Claire Henley. The squeaky clean volume contains works by the likes of Douglas Florian and Carl Sandburg, as well as traditional ditties (to wit: "Miss Susie had a baby,/ His name was Tiny Tim,/ She put him in the bathtub/ To see if he could swim"). Henley's mix of spot art and full-bleed paintings of happy, soaking-wet youngsters make bathtime look fun.
Children's Literature
This diverse collection of poems celebrates bathtime from start to finish. The poems range from traditional verse to such American poets as Carl Sandburg to Caribbean poet Valerie Bloom, as well as poets from England and Australia. The book offers selections to interest even the child who is most reluctant to heed the call for soap. Whether it's finding water everywhere "whenever Daddy takes a bath," pretending to be a fish in the sea, or losing the soap that "slithers and slides down to the edge of the tub, where it hides," the poems engage the reader with a sense of fun. The collection ends appropriately on a quiet, loving note in a poem by Grace Nichols in which a grandmother carefully combs out her granddaughter's wet hair. Warm, richly-colored illustrations representing a rainbow of children evoke a sense of the fun and contentment—and occasional humor—that is bathtime. 2002, Clarion Books/Houghton Mifflin, Patterson
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 4-This sweet and breezy collection focuses on the ins and outs of bathtime. Some kids like baths, others don't; some use soap, others won't. In 18 short, energetic poems, the book covers experiences before, during, and after a soak in the tub. And while the downside is touched upon (soap in the eyes, the floor all wet), most of the verses are celebratory. While a diverse group of poets, such as Carl Sandburg, John Drinkwater, Aileen Fisher, and Grace Nichols, is represented, the consistent style and rich, textured colors of the paintings pull the collection together. Full-page illustrations mix with the vignettes. Light blues and purples accent each drawing. The kids, all round faced and squat, represent myriad racial roots, underlining the universality of wash-up time. Kids who have not been exposed to much poetry will find this collection easily accessible and thoroughly entertaining.- Martha Topol, Traverse Area District Library, Traverse City, MI Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A compilation of effervescent poems celebrate tub time. Philip's selections date from such early traditional rhymes as "Wash, hands, wash, / Daddy's gone to plow./ If you want your hands washed, / Have them washed now" through the late-20th century. Authors include Carl Sandburg, Valerie Bloom, Mark Burgess, Douglas Florian, and others as well as Philip himself. Whether loved or loathed, nightly ablutions are routine for nearly all children. The poems selected reflect the universality of this theme as it spans the generations. In Washing (circa 1929), John Drinkwater's lament "Please, what is all this washing about?" is echoed nearly 70 years later by Pauline Stewart: "Wash wash in the bath / even though I'm not dirty / If I keep on washing every day/ I'll be clean by the time I'm thirty."(Bath) Likewise, the sheer joy of a dunk in the tub is fervently celebrated in such poems as Bathtime and Water Everywhere. Henley's full-bleed illustrations capture the charisma and unique voice of each poem, while retaining that element of playfulness that is the essence of bathtime. Her children encompass many nationalities, reflecting the multicultural blend of the author's voices. A truly buoyant tribute to the family tub. (Poetry. 3-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780618159390
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 9/28/2002
  • Edition description: None
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.10 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Neil Philip is a noted folklorist and anthologist who has written several books on Native American and multicultural themes for Clarion, including IN A SACRED MANNER I LIVE, which was named both a YALSA Best Book for Young Adults and a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. He lives in England.

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