Thursday, July 3, 2008

America at War: Poems

America at War: Poems selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins, illustrated by Stephen Alcorn
American wars are viewed through poetry divided into sections covering the American Revolution through the current Iraq War. The poetry comes from well known poets such as Walt Whitman and Stephen Crane and reveal war's anguish and confusion. Other poems are written especially for this collection, such as Jane Yolen's "Alphabet" about concentration camps. Some poems are not specifically about war but fit the time period, as does Langston Hughes' poem "Youth." Each poem has a colorful, dramatic watercolor illustration that captures the poem's idea or theme.


Kirkus Reviews said...

...A worthy but flawed effort.

Nancy Palmer/School Library Journal said...

...the flaw is in the scarcity of brown and Asian faces in roles other than runaway slaves or victims. Laura Robb's Music and Drum: Voices of War and Peace, Hope and Dreams (Philomel, 1997) and Eloise Greenfield's When the Horses Ride By: Children in the Times of War (Lee & Low, 2006) touch on Native American experiences-a genocide that Hopkins's collection does not include. Still, the selections and art here, with their varying accessibility, make this a good choice for a wide range of ages and studies.