64 pages • 9 in x 11 in • Ideal for kids 7-10 years old
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In this gorgeously illustrated collection of poems, readers are introduced to twenty-five of Emily Dickinson's most beloved poems, each illustrated with stunning, full-color collage artwork. Brief commentary and helpful definitions accompany each poem, making The Illustrated Emily Dickinson among the most accessible—and beautiful—introductions to the Belle of Amherst available!
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Behind the Book
Ryan G. Van Cleave
Ryan G. Van Cleave wrote his first poem at age five, and he’s been writing, reading, and loving poetry ever since. He earned a Ph.D. in American Literature with an emphasis in poetry and has taught at numerous colleges and universities. Currently, he runs the creative writing major at Ringling College of Art and Design. As The Picture Book Whisperer, he helps celebrities and high-profile clients write picture books and kidlit projects.
David Miles is an award-winning and bestselling author and illustrator of over 40 books, including The Side-by-Side Declaration of Independence, Book, The Interactive Constitution, Allegro, Unicorn and Horse, and other titles. He has worked as a designer, illustrator, and creative director, and he now runs Bushel & Peck Books with his wife, Stephanie. He's been named a CYBILS Award Finalist, Publishers Weekly Star Watch Nominee, Trvst Changemaker, New York Book Show Award Winner, and Bill Fisher Award Finalist, among other accolades. He lives in Fresno, California, with his family.
This book is just gorgeous! The illustrations and cover are amazing. I know that my 15 year old niece will love having this on her shelf.
Love Emily and love the illustrations.
I love poetry and Dickinson is among my favorite. The book is beautiful and much bigger than I expected. Can't wait to delve in!
Ryan Van Cleave has a passion for writing, his own and that of others. He’s a writing coach. He’s a teacher and writing program coordinator. He’s a speaker. He’s written and produced a number of children’s books about poetry, like “The Illustrated Emily Dickinson.”It’s an oversized, colorful book, likely aimed at ages 5 to 9. It includes what Van Cleave calls “25 essential poems” by Dickinson. The poems include some of the poet’s best-known works – “Success is counted sweetest,” “Because I could not stop for death,” “I never saw a Moor,” and “A Light exists in Spring.”Van Cleave doesn’t simply reprint the poems. The book is designed to introduce children to poetry and to Emily Dickinson. Each poem is accompanied by three questions about the poem itself, and then a more open-ended question that asks the reader to imagine something based on the poem. And certain words in the poem are highlighted and then defined in a sidebar.Here’s an example, from “A Light exists in Spring”:A Light exists in SpringNot present on the YearAt any other period —When March is scarcely hereA Color stands abroadOn Solitary FieldsThat Science cannot overtakeBut Human Nature feels.It waits upon the Lawn,It shows the furthest TreeUpon the furthest Slope you knowIt almost speaks to you.Then as Horizons stepOr Noons report awayWithout the Formula of soundIt passes and we stay —A quality of lossAffecting our ContentAs Trade had suddenly encroachedUpon a Sacrament.The questions asked are why include scientific and religious references in a poem about nature, and what else is lost when the light goes away. The “imagine” question is, “If this poem were edible, what would it taste like?” The two highlighted words that are defined are “encroached” and “Sacrament.”The book also includes “Ten Things to Know About Emily Dickinson,” a short commentary on each of the poems, references for additional reading, and a bibliography.While the language is simple enough for a young reader to read it alone, the book seems designed for an older reader to read it with the child. And while the emphasis is on the text, each poem is accompanied by a delightful collage-like illustration that’s as engaging as the poem itself. The initial simplicity of Dickinson’s poems seems almost designed for both reading aloud to a younger or beginning reader and imaginative illustrations.Van Cleave leads the creative writing major at the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida. He’s also the Picture Book Whisperer ™, helping celebrities write and sell children’s books. His clients have included Olympic medal winners, NFL players, Hollywood actors, and TV personalities. He’s written a number of books on writing and video games, textbooks, poetry anthologies, his own poetry, and illustrated editions of the poems of Robert Frost and Lewis Carroll.My own grandchildren are likely past, or just past, the age of sitting still (or not rolling their eyes) while their grandfather reads stories or poems to them. They would have liked “The Illustrated Emily Dickinson.” Their grandfather has reached the age, however, where he can thoroughly enjoy it.
It is a very beautifully illustrated book of poems by Emily Dickinson with prompts for thought that a teacher or book club could use for discussion.I was very pleased with it.