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IN THE SWIM Even the most educated marine biologist could learn something from this whimsical, beautifully illustrated collection of 21 poems about sea life. Some of the poems are pure silly fun ("There are uglier fish than a blennie-- / But not many."), and others are gracefully infiltrated with animal facts ("Did you know the ocean's oysters / Sometimes change from girls to boysters?"). Douglas Florian, whose Beast Feast and On the Wing received high praise, accompanies each of his delightful poems with a stunning watercolor painting. In addition to capturing the liquid blur of an underwater world, the illustrations incorporate subtle visual jokes; for example, the salmon are doing the high jump, and the seahorses are wearing saddles. It's no fish story--Florian's combination of intelligent, funny rhymes and rich, irresistible paintings will make a splash in your home! (Ages 3 and older)WHAT THE EXPERTS ARE SAYING:Grade 2-6. Twenty-one lighthearted poems about fish. Florian, whose previous collections about the denizens of land and air have delighted many, dives into the deep with equally felicitous results. In the Swim casts a humorous eye on such familiar creatures as the whale, the oyster, the eel, and the skate. What's unusual here is the sheer, unforced playfulness, the ease and fluidity informing both verse and pictures. Few readers will be able to resist the starfish sporting huge sunglasses who declares, "And though it's true/I have no brain,/I'm still a star?/I can't complain." The collection also contains some examples of concrete poetry such as the sawfish whose verse zigzags down the page. The poems appear singly on stark, white sheets, each facing its own full-page watercolor illustration done in muted, watery tones. And what zany illustrations they are. A flounder doubles as a dish; sea horses are complete with bridles and saddles. In the Swim will work equally well for story hours, poetry-writing sessions, or one-on-one sharing. Many poetry books for children touch upon marine life. This one, like the rainbow trout on the penultimate page, is definitely "Divine!/Delish!" - Ellen D. Warwick, Winchester Public Library, MA ISBN: 0-15-202437-9 publish date: 07/01/2008
Binding Type: Softcover
ISBN: 0-15-202437-9
Author: Douglas Florian

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