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A Whiff of Pine, a Hint of Skunk: A Forest of Poems    by Deborah Ruddell & Joan Rankin order for
Whiff of Pine, a Hint of Skunk
by Deborah Ruddell
Order:  USA  Can
Margaret K. McElderry, 2009 (2009)
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Daninhirsch

I looked up from almost every poem I was reading in this collection and announced to my family, 'How cute!' or 'I love this poem!' or 'Listen to this!'

This refreshing poetry picture book is an ode to forest creatures, and it is appropriate for children of all ages. The poems are humorous, insightful and all around enjoyable. Some titles are Eau De Forest: A Woodsy Cologne; Woodpecker Feud; Biography of a Beaver; Chipmunks, Inc.; and The Night Owl.

My favorite poem, A Wild Turkey Comments on His Portrait, is about a turkey protesting a handprint made in his likeness:

'I find it most insulting
that you traced around your hand
and colored all my feathers
either plain old brown or tan.

Where's the copper? Where's the gold
that a turkey should expect?
Where on earth is raw sienna,
and where is the respect?

Finally, I'm baffled
that you've made me look so dumb.
My head is quite distinguished
and it's nothing like your thumb.

From the catchy title to the humorous poetry to the adorable watercolor illustrations, this book works on all levels and is a perfect choice for spring.

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