Jane Yolen and J. Patrick Lewis provide LAST LAUGHS: ANIMAL EPITAPHS, illustrated by Jeffrey Stewart Timmins

563591_10151537572350186_1450829022_n

“Last Laughs”
Here at Amen
Creature Corners,
beasties weep
like misty mourners,
but when they read
an epitaph,
it always brings them
one last laugh.
Forget the hankies.
Read the words
of bugs and fishes,
beasts and birds.
They know it’s not
all gloom and doom
that’s written
once upon a tomb.

–from LAST LAUGHS: ANIMAL EPITAPHS by Jane Yolen and J. Patrick Lewis, illustrated by Jeffrey Stewart Timmins

 

 

 

Welcome, boys and ghouls, to the pet cemetery. Here at Amen / Creature Corners, / beasties weep / like misty mourners, / but when they read / an epitaph, / it always brings them / one last laugh. So begins terminally terse poetry covering the sudden—and often quite grim—demises of 30 unlucky animals. Take, for instance, the hen that has just been hammered to death by three chicks: The end of her day / was in fowl play. Or how about the collection of milk cans stacked alongside an urn: This grave is peaceful, / the tombstone shaded, / but I’m not here— / I’ve been cream-ated. Yes, this is a picture book, and heavens no, it is not appropriate for everyone. Timmins’ brown-and-black-heavy Photoshop, ink, and gouache illustrations embellish each morbid rhyme with macabre images (warning: there will be blood) and facial details that turn each animal into a nightmare beast. Squeamish? Then stay away. But those itching to move beyond the positive messages and bright colors so ubiquitous in picture books will find this just the thing to elicit appreciative playground groans. Gallows humor at its finest. Grades 2-4. – Booklist

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s