April 17th-Bat Appreciation Day

posted by Ruth

The Bat Poet by Randall Jarrell, illustrated by Maurice Sendak

I confess; I  lobbied for writing today’s blog just so I could gush about The Bat Poet, truly one of my all-time favorite books.  I really do appreciate bats, and this little poet is one of the reasons why.  It’s a wonderful tale of this particular bat’s creative process. As a writer, he is frustrated that his bat friends are uninterested in his work, so he decides to stay awake during the day–explore what is seen by daylight, observing, writing, and sharing with a very different audience.  He searches for good conference partners, gets writer’s block, learns to write about what he knows ( how scary owls are!), and grows as an artist as the story unfolds.  Randall Jarrell’s amazing poems are throughout the book, and Maurice Sendak’s illustrations create a wonderful mood.  Young children love it–and so do adults, especially those of us who can identify with his writing process ups and downs.

And if this books whets your appetite for more bat heroes, we recommend:

Bats at the Beach by Brian Lies

Everyone loves the beach, even the bats.  They just have to go at night… but they do everything we do at the beach.    The rhymes are funny and delightful, as are all the funny things bats do at the beach- they can’t forget the moon-screen, and for a treat they have some icky bug-mallows roasting in the campfire.  But the real beauty of this book is in the gorgeous illustrations- darkly lovely, but with humorous details and sweetly furry little bat faces that draw you in.  And don’t miss Bats in the Library, and Bats at the Ballgame!

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