I Can Draw a Weeposaur and Other Dinosaurs : Poems
by Greenfield, Eloise; Gilchrist, Jan Spivey (ILT)

A young girl depicts in poems and drawings the imaginary dinosaurs that she dreams up, like the sleeposaurus, the florasaurus, and Mr. and Mrs. Cha-Chasaurus.

Ages 4-8. In this delightful picture book, imaginary dinosaurs spring from a young girl's imagination onto the pages of her poems and drawings. Simple, often droll poems, rhyming and free verse, introduce such dinosaurs as the shy Singersaurus, the clumsy Trickosaurus, and the mall-loving Shoppersaurus. Interspersed are first-person poems that insightfully convey the girl's creative process and the joy it brings: "I spread the colors / thin and heavy and long / and short, / the shapes come . . . Oh, I am happy / when I see what I have done." Vibrant watercolor, pen, and marker art dances across pages, contrasting brightly colored, childlike dinosaur renderings with more expressive, evocative portrayals of the girl drawing, thinking, and interacting with the creations that have become her friends. Young ones will enjoy the humorous puns, dinosaur antics (often echoing familiar human behavior), and playful visuals and be inspired to create their own poems and art. A lively celebration of a child's imagination and the rewards of artistic expression. ((Reviewed April 1, 2001)) Copyright 2001 Booklist Reviews

Frequent collaborators Gilchrist and Greenfield (Angels: An African American Treasury, 1998, etc.) capture a budding artist's enthusiasm and compulsion to paint: "My room is full, / but my hand won't stop, / won't stop, / putting paint on paper / paint on paper, / paint . . ." What this child paints is dinosaurs of her own invention, including a Speedasaurus ("She never speaks to carnivores"), a (male!) Shoppersaurus, a Weeposaurus, a Sleeposaurus, a Messysaurus, and a Babysaurus: "He's his Mama's littlebaby, / Smiling sweet in Tennessee, / But his middle's in Montana, / And his tail's in Waikiki." The dark-skinned child in Gilchrist's illustrations positively radiates joy as she presides over an array of smiling, simply drawn cartoon dinosaurs renderedin bright paintbox colors. Children will easily catch the breezy, bouncy mood here, and few will be able to resist the invitation to create more new dinos, in pictures, words, or both. (Picture book/poetry. 5-7) Copyright Kirkus 2001 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved

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