A Moose Boosh: A Few Choice Words on Food

illus. by Eric-Shabazz Larkin. 96p. photos. Readers to Eaters. 2014. pap. $18.95. ISBN 9780983661559. LC 2014944375.
Gr 3 Up—Larkin presents more than 40 tasty, food-inspired poems written in the spirit of an amuse-bouche, or small appetizer offered by the chef before a meal, in this fun and innovative collection. Varied in style and tone—much like food itself—the witty, quirky poems take on many different topics. "A Desk Is Not a Dinner Table" pushes readers to consider the value in making time for a quality meal, while "Secret Meat," "Ashley Won't Eat It If She Can't Spell It," and "Food Doesn't Grow in Packages" will spark dialogue about where food comes from, who touches it along its journey, and what artificial elements it contains. The design is inspired, from the table of contents, which resembles a menu, to the photographs, which have been "vandalized" by Larkin with graffiti art, whimsically bringing each poem to life and giving it a voice (for instance, "Do It for Dr. King" is accompanied by a lush photograph of a spoonful of green peas, with a superimposed sketch of Martin Luther King Jr.). The author's note offers a sweet, journal-like description of how this title came to be written, designed in a variety of handwriting-esque fonts. Pair this collection with texts on urban farming, cooking, and the origins of foods, such as Hadley Dyer's Potatoes on Rooftops: Farming in the City (Annick, 2012) and, for younger readers, Jacqueline Briggs Martin's Alice Waters and the Trip to Delicious (Readers to Eaters, 2014) and Gerda Muller's How Does My Garden Grow?? (Floris, 2014). This is a charming and original book that should start some quality conversation about food.—Andy Plemmons, David C. Barrow Elementary, Athens, GA

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