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Asquith, Ros: Vanishing Trick.

Asquith, Ros

Vanishing Trick

Frances Lincoln, 201 5, pp111, 6.99[pounds sterling]

978 1 84780 539 3

This is a brilliant debut collection of poems from Guardian cartoonist and writer, Ros Asquith.

All the poems have the immediate appeal of strong rhythm and rhyme, and they are wonderfully varied in their scope and tone. There are cautionary tales like 'Greedy Mabel', about a cat who gobbles up a whole birthday tea and then explodes. Then there are funny ones such as 'Vamp Ire' about the vegetarian daughter of Count Dracula and Countess Drac; beyond the humour is often an important message, for example, 'Whatever you do Can be wrong for your parents but right for you.' Quirky, narrative poems, like 'Mohammed and the Whale', which extends over four pages, kept me hooked. There is a deeply sensitive awareness of the child's point of view, of feelings like the need to be alone, the unfairness of boys not being allowed to cry, or the experience of being a quiet child in a loud house. I especially enjoyed the word play, and poems about 'pomes', reading, dyslexiaaaaaagh and anagrams. There are lovely pieces to use as models for children's writing--such as the fun of changing vowels:

'Today we are having a spilling test./Please spill your words carefully./Tomorrow I will ask you to odd up,/because tomorrow is moths.'

This is a book which children and teachers will love--no classroom should be without a copy!

Sophie Smiley

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Author:Smiley, Sophie
Publication:School Librarian
Article Type:Book review
Date:Dec 22, 2015
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