I’M JUST NO GOOD AT RHYMING AND OTHER NONSENSE FOR MISCHIEVOUS KIDS AND IMMATURE GROWN-UPS by Chris Harris, illustrated by Lane Smith

I’m Just No Good at Rhyming and Other Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Adults by Chris Harris, illustrated by Lane Smith

If you’ve been wishing there were a poetry collection for today’s kids that rivals the fun and joy in language that Shel Silverstein brought to generations of children, we have a recommendation for you.  In reviews, you’ll see this comparison to Silverstein is not original, but when you read the poems, we feel confident Shel will leap to your mind as well.  For me, though (Ruth here), I must say I actually prefer Harris.  I love the wit as well as slapstick, the clever wordplay, and the downright literate silliness. Here’s one of the shortest:  “Two Roads/Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–/I took the one less traveled by/Since then I’ve been completely lost./Thanks for nothing, Robert Frost!”

You can see why B.J.Novak loves the book when you read “Hey, Kids! Get Your Parents to Read You This Poem!”  Check out the first stanza:

I’m your parent, and I’m so dumb,/ I bite my tongue and I suck my thumb!/ I try to give my fist a kiss,/ But miss, and hit my nose–like this!

I keep finding examples I want to share with you, gentle reader, but I think I’ll just say loud and clear:  You and your kids will love this collection.  Check it out!

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