Friday, November 16, 2018


I'm a long time Julie Paschkis fan. I have read her posts on Poetry Friday for years. Her last book, FLUTTER AND HUM: ALETEO Y ZUMBIDO, is one of my all-time favorite bilingual books, also one of my favorite animal books. I was excited, then, to see that Julie has a new book included in this year's CYBILS poetry nominees.

VIVID: POEMS AND NOTES ABOUT COLORS is a wonderful mixture of poems, and science, and fun facts (did you know that in ancient times, in Phoenicia, now Lebanon, purple dye was made from sea snails, and that it took 243,000 snails to make one ounce of dye, which was then sold for three times its weight in gold?), and Julie's original folk art.

In an author's note in the back, Paschkis says, "In this book, I paint poems of different colors, and I include some colorful facts and questions. I hope it inspires you to explore the art and science of color: to write, read, and draw a blue streak!" 

That pretty much sums up the book. Each two-page spread is about a different color- yellow, orange, pink, red, blue, indigo, green, pink, black, white, and ending with rainbow. There's a poem, some playful and some lovely, and also a paragraph of interesting information about that color. Here's one of my favorites:

Loudly, rowdy
daffodils yell hello
Hot yellow

And the factual information:
"Yellow is often described as the color most visible to humans. Because many birds and insects can see ultraviolet light (such as light from X-raysor the sun), it is likely that birds and insects are especially sensitive to the brightness of yellow light. And the yolk of an egg turns a deeper yellow if a chicken eats more yellowplants. (Cardinals also turn redder if they eat more red foods, including seedlings or berries, and flamingos turn pink from eating shrimp.)

And a couple of more poems, just so you can see the playfulness and also the wonderful variety of style:


Inquired Patrice:

"What color paint would you like tonight?
Crimson, scarlet, or cadmium light?

Magenta, madder, beet, carmine?
Quinacridone rose, alizarin?

There are a zillion!
Even vermilion!"

"Red," said Fred.

Long Lake
in I go

Definitely a book elementary teachers and school libraries will want to own.

Poetry Friday, and a giveaway, is at fellow Denverite, Linda Baie's, TeacherDance.


BJ Lee said...

This looks great, Carol I love Julie's work. Thanks for sharing this!

jama said...

It's a wonderful book. Always a treat when a new Julie book comes out. I'm a longtime fan too. Thanks for featuring VIVID this week.

Linda B said...

I adored this book, Flutter and Hum, too, Carol. I loved the poems, but equally the extra research Julie shared about the colors. Yes! That snail collecting amazed me to learn! So glad you're doing this first step for Cybils and can't wait for what you send to the 2nd round. Happy Thanksgiving!

Linda Mitchell said...

Oh, how beautiful and fun....AND informative. Thank you for sharing this gem. I love that long dive into deeper and deeper blue.

Jane @ said...

I love the blend of facts, figures, fun and fancy!

Catherine Flynn said...

I love Julie Paschkis's art and clever poems! Thank you for giving us a peek into this book.

Kay said...

This book looks fabulous! It would be perfect for my friend who is an art teacher.

Buffy Silverman said...

I am a Julie Paschkis fan too--will have to look for this book. It looks wonderful!

Michelle Kogan said...

Thanks for reviewing Julie's colorful book, I'm familiar with "Flutter and Hum, and look forward to reading this one too!