Who doesn’t know Emily Dickinson? A beloved poet born in Massachusetts in the 1800’s, she pushed the boundaries of poetry. She has been loved ever since. A new generation of children are waiting to meet her in Emily Writes. Jane Yolen shows us a delightful young Emily Dickinson. Let’s dig into this review shall we?
What I am Reviewing
Emily Writes: Emily Dickinson and her poetic beginnings by Jane Yolen is a walk into the early years of Emily Dickinson. 40 pages of engaging art work were provided by Christine Davenier. These delight the senses as we wander through Emily’s early days. Children aged 4-8 are invited to follow Emily as she discovers her own love of poetry.
Step into United States history as you read this biography of an important American Poet. Emily Writes was published by Henry Holt & Co. I am reviewing this advance readers edition on behalf of Raincoast Books.
The Details for Emily Writes
Emily Writes is an imagined story of Emily Dickinson’s early life. Elements from different stages of her life were included in this one day of her life. Was her first poem really what it was? I don’t know. 🙂 But it does showcase her love for poetry from an early age.
And as the author explains at the close of the book, her envelope poem as captured above wasn’t actually written until some 40 years later.
Every page is filled with colour, with ample white space so as to not overload the senses or crowd out the words. Her yellow dress dotes the face of almost every page. This is Emily’s day.
We catch glimpses of how it was to live in her family. An older brother Austin who also loved poetry, a hard-working, not particularly attentive father, a sickly mama and a younger sister.
I love how the illustrations by Christine Davenier really help to make this story. This is an imagined walk through one day in Emily’s life. We see her wandering through the pages in her yellow dress. She enjoys life, visits with her family, and more. We get to see everything she does. It inspires conversation between adult and child.
They help us see Emily’s fascination with making her first poem. The joy she had in walking through the garden. It was easy to see the fun she had with the housekeeper. There is so much in this book to make for a nice story. Images to expand the story line and the joy in words Emily shared.
This is a good first book to introduce children to Emily Dickinson. Enjoy Emily Writes!