Hypnotize a TigerCalef Brown’s witty verse and illustrations leap and frolic from one topic to the next, full of wordplay, humor and rhymes. Whether he's riffing off of his "peeps" like Lazyhead "eating frozen raisin bread" while staring at the TV, or sharing "poems of a particular vehicular nature", Brown is at his best when he combines short witty verse with pen and ink drawings.
Poems About Just About Everything
by Calef Brown
Henry Holt / Macmillan, 2015
Your local library
*best new book*
Rhyming word play is delightful and footnotes add to the humor, encouraging careful reading. Here's one of my favorites:
Lou GnomeIrreverent? Certainly! But for kids who think that using a G in the word gnome is completely nuts, this poems makes absolute sense. I also love all the ways that Brown plays with language, not only using obvious end-rhymes like home and gnome, but also substituting beginning sounds to imply rhymes in your head (don't you love gnome-schooled?!).
Look who came back home
it's Lou Gnome!
Like the G in his name,
Lou is silent.
He doesn't speak,
even when spoken to.
None of the Gnomes in Hoboken do.
Those that are gnome-schooled
are required to recite the Pledge of the Wee-Gents,
sometimes at huge events.
My students and I keep finding treasures to make us laugh. In "Roman Pets", Brown declares that "They even found a dog brush/ in a catacomb." Get it? Cat-a-comb? Dog-brush?!! The footnote reads: "A puppy at play/ on the Appian Way/ was happy to say/ he was not in Pompeii."
Many reviewers have called Brown's poems "nonsense verse", but I have to declare that they make the upmost sense! Just take a look at how he combines pigeons and frogs into "Pigeon Frogs":
Illustrations ©2015 by Calef Brown; used with permission from Macmillan. The review copy was kindly sent by the publisher, Macmillan. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books. Thank you for your support.
©2015 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books