Tuesday 2 October 2012

A Foot in the Mouth: Poems to Sing, Speak and Shout

A Foot in the Mouth: Poems to Speak, Sing, and Shout A Foot in the Mouth: Poems to Speak, Sing, and Shout selected by Paul B. Janeczko, illustrated by Chris Raschka (Candlewick Press/Walker Books)
PB RRP $ 16.95
ISBN 978-0-7636-6083-3
Reviewed by Anastasia Gonis

All the poems in this book have been chosen because they are ideal for reading aloud. The poets range from Shakespeare to Lewis Carroll. They are a delightful selection of word sounds, up and downs, loud and soft, happy and sad, tales of woe and tales of triumph. In The Loch Ness Monster’s Song, there is language that will make you laugh out loud because you can’t say it, as there is in parts of Jabberwocky.

The poems are entertaining and ridiculous, clever and creative as in Pasta Parade and Corinna. There are Limericks and Tongue Twisters; List poems, Bilingual poems; Poems For One Voice, Poems For Two Voices, Poems For Three Voices and Poems For a Group. You’ll find Rhymed Poems and Short Stuff.

This selection is outstanding! Children will love the sounds and have fun with this book simply because that’s what it’s created for. It’s also educational and encourages the reader to learn a poem by heart The cover is as crazy and lively as the poems in the book.

The wonderful watercolour illustrations in thick brushstrokes complement each page. The end pages show patchwork pieces of patterned cloth and letters of different writing styles floating upon a bright red background.

There is always a favourite. Mine is Favourite! It’s about ‘an olive drab corduroy coat’ that ends: ‘I may have looked funny – But I called myself Honey – In my olive drab – horizontal – wide-wale - barrel buttoned - plush coloured – corduroy coat’. (I had a coat like this as a child.)

Who says children have all the fun? I love this book! Its contents filled me with laughter and joy. It is the ideal gift for anyone wanting a pick-me-up, or for no reason at all except for enjoying the surprising selection of wonderful work contained within. Ideal for readers of 5 to 105+

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