I'll Root for You

illus. by Wolf Erlbruch. 44p. Eerdmans. Aug. 2018. Tr $17. ISBN 9780802855015.
Gr 3 Up—Are you ready to run, shout, and stretch? Van de Vendel's rhyming poems encourage children to do their best as they join a frog, a cat, a pig, and a few dogs in a variety of sports. They can win the race in "A Magic Place" or play with Cat in "Impossible Things." The illustrations are quirky and fun with animals wearing sportswear, including a duck in a blue tracksuit, a pig in a swimsuit, and a frog in running shorts. Erlbruch's humorous depictions of lively and exhausted animals pushing through to the finish line will have readers chuckling. However, while some rhymes work, others seem strained. Also, some poems contain content or jokes that seem directed toward a more mature audience.
VERDICT Have students pick and choose their favorites and then get moving with this collection of sporty poems.

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