Singing the Praises of Forest Has a Song

Forest Has a Song by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater and illustrated by Robbin Gourley has only been out for a few weeks and already people are singing its praises. forest-has-a-songIt was Children’s Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis’s February 2013 Book Pick, for example.

The accolades are well deserved. VanDerwater’s gentle poems about nature hit all the right notes. Any book that can evoke the cool summer feeling of wearing “moss socks” is sure to win the reader over. My personal favorite is “Forest News” about reading animals tracks in newly fallen snow, which makes me miss my New England roots.

Robbin Gourley’s illustrations are also marvelous. They reflect the poems, yet leave room for the child’s imagination to flow free. A few curled ferns, a leaf or two, interspersed with scenes of a girl and her dog (and her mother) hiking, playing or skiing in the woods. Poem Farm has a post about how Robin developed the illustrations.

The book trailer of Amy Ludwig VanDerwater reciting the title poem gives you the best impression of what the book is like.



Isn’t that lovely? In an interview at Nerdy Book Club, the author reveals the book took a long time to come out. It was well worth the wait.

Reading Forest Has a Song is a superb way to celebrate National Poetry Month and it sure to inspire some budding poets. It would also be a great choice to read for Earth Day and to celebrate nature. You will want to return to the Forest again and again.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has an awesome Poetry Activity Kit to accompany Forest Has A Song (plus three other books of poetry) to download or print out for free.


Age Range: 6 – 9 years
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Clarion Books (March 26, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0618843493
ISBN-13: 978-0618843497

This book was supplied by the publisher for review purposes.



Nonfiction Monday is a blogging celebration of nonfiction books for kids. We invite you to join us. For more information and a schedule, stop by Booktalking to see who is hosting each week.

This week’s round-up can be found at a wrung sponge.