Monday, May 19, 2008

Nonfiction Monday - Keepers


Keepers: Treasure Hunt Poems
by John Frank
Roaring Book Press
April 2008

One of the many delights of Keepers: Treasure Hunt Poems is that it can be used both as a nonfiction text as well as a poetry text.

John Frank understands what a treasure is. In his foreword, he says, "The wonder of treasure. It makes us say Wow... There's a well-known phrase: the thrill of the hunt. Couple that with the joy of discovery, and you've got a feeling that's tough to beat."

Keepers is a book that talks about the treasures that we might find or discover in our everyday lives. Each poem is about a separate treasure -- the abalone shell, a doll, the skin of a rattlesnake that it outgrew, a comic book, and an old coin, just to name a few.

Frank's book is acutally categorized into sections by the places you might find treasures:
- At the Beach
- In the Attic
- In the Mountains and Desert
- At the Flea Market
- Beneath the Ground
And in each section, he has six separate poems that talk about treasures from that location. One of my favorite poems from this book was found "In the Attic":

"MEDAL
You must be the medal
they pinned
on his uniform -

bronze,
with a ribbon
of red, white, and blue

I read of that war.
To this day
Grandpa still will not

speak much
about what he did -
but you do."

What an incredibly powerful poem!! (and there are many more just like it!)

Many of the poems have fabulous photographs, done by Ken Robbins, that enhance the text even more.

I enjoyed reading each poem included in Keepers. I found this book in the New Book section of our public library, but it will be a book I need to purchase for my classroom. We will use it for the loveliness of the words and the pictures those words paint, we will use it as a mentor writing text, we might even use it for the inferring skills a reader needs to understand what is not directly stated in the text. But Keepers will be a book shared numerous times, and is a book that will have many different entry levels in the classroom.

For the Nonfiction Monday roundup, head to Picture Book of the Day.

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