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Ice Cycle Book Review and Trans Day of Visibility

Happy Poetry Friday! Today, we're hosted by the fantabulous Mary Lee over at A(nother) Year of Reading. Thanks for hosting Mary Lee!

First off, let me start by saying HAPPY TRANS DAY OF VISIBILITY! So many of you, my lovely Poetry Friday friends, came out of the woodwork to support the Trans Right Readathon these past two weeks. THANK YOU. For more information on how the readathon turned out, here's Sim Kern's video. But, if you just want the numbers... together, the book community read over 7,800 trans books and raised over $234,000 for trans right organization and mutual aid. Wow! Thank you for being a part of this effort! Let's keep reading lots of trans books moving forward! To help you do that, once again here's the incredible list of trans books compiled by Rhys to discover. Check out the Middle Grade page-- it's got over 50 titles!

I'm honestly pretty surprised by how few non-gender-conforming poets I was able to discover in the kidlit community-- especially in poetry picture books (MG/YA authors tend to be a little easier for me to find, for whatever reason). I am quite sure I missed people, so if you know of any publicly trans/non-gender-conforming children's poets, PLEASE let me know either in the comments or by email. I want to read what my community writes! (And if you're a trans/non-gender-conforming children's poet reading this and you haven't come out publicly for any reason, your choice is both valid and accepted. Everyone else-- no outing folks! Please only let me know about poets who have decided to make their identities public!)

I'll have lots more trans books to rec in the future, but today I found myself chilly... so of course I decided to read about ice. (It helped that the cover colors for this book looked so similar to the Trans Pride Flag colors!) Without further ado... let's talk about Ice Cycle: Poems About the Life of Ice by Maria Gianferrari, illustrated by Jieting Chen. Gosh how I love this book.

Ice Cycle is science poetry at its finest, because the the entire book is designed to spark curiosity! Gianferrari writes poems full of scientific terms, but rather than define terms in the poetry text she relies on context clues, illustration, and the glossary to help readers understand more. The backmatter is full of ice facts, resources, experiment ideas, and a gorgeously lengthy glossary. And of course... there is the poetry.

I adore the way these poems sound. I love that they're short, action-packed, and full of sensation. I love the book design, and how the words are displayed on the pages. I love how seamlessly the words work with the illustrations to inform and delight, and how both the illustrator and the writer leave room for the other to use their strengths fully. Friends... Ice Cycle is excellent. I highly recommend it.

I know lots of us are looking forward to Poetry Month... and so am I! I'm looking forward to diving headfirst into my TBR pile to discover new delights, and to writing up a storm. Who knows... maybe I'll even finish polishing one of these manuscripts by the end of the month! During April, anything is possible...

Happy reading everyone!


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