What happens when Chris Harris, a producer known for his work on the T.V. show How I Met Your Mother, decides to take a stab at writing children’s literature? The answer is a book of poetry that will leave readers of all ages (even self-proclaimed “not poetry people”) laughing out loud. The full title gives you a sense of what’s ahead on this reading adventure: I’m Just No Good at Rhyming: And Other Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-ups.
Every nook and cranny of this collection is meant to tickle one’s funny bone, from the author’s note to the index. (There’s also an “outdex,” in which the titles of poems “that did not make the final cut” are hilariously featured.) In a poem titled “If you ever have to memorize a poem of twenty lines or longer and deliver it to your class, then this is a pretty good choice,” the author explores dynamics and varying typefaces all centered around one word: AVOCADO. In “Alphabet Book (By the Laziest Artist in the World)” a hat-shaped doodle is used to describe all sorts of objects, from jump-roping ants and a rainbow to the St. Louis Arch.
Lane Smith’s inky, earth-toned illustrations create visual interest and add depth to each page, yet they never distract too much from the witty text. Readers might be reminded of Shel Silverstein, for there are moments of tender observations on life and the world that offer balance and serve as successful transitions between the goofy, high-energy poems. Feel free to crack this book open to a random page, but know there are extra treasures and jokes for those who read this one start to finish. Check it out today, and explore the rest of our children’s poetry collection to see what other silly and insightful surprises await.