Jabberwalking written and illustrated by Juan Felipe Herrera, 144 pages, RL 4
Jabberwalking by Juan Felipe Herrera
Review Copy from Candlewick Press
Poet Laureate of the United States from 2015-2017, Jabberwalking is a call to action, a call to creativity, a call to freedom of expression, a call to jump into the world, see it with new eyes and write poetry about it all! Starting with a quote from Lewis Carroll's Jabberwocky, Herrera's voice bursts off the pages as tells readers that a Jabber Walker is a, "bonified poet on the tangly streets of the planet where human beings breathe as best they can and slap their hands in the air to greet the sun where periods and dashes and verbs and nouns come flying." When Herrera is not telling Jabber Walkers where to walk, what to see and what to write on their way to an almost-book, entries from his [Jabber Notebook] give readers a glimpse into his life, past and present. His Chinese Pit Bull Shar-Pei, Lotus, also makes several appearance, as she is often the impetus for a Jabber Walk. Herrera's drawings, the occasional photograph, and changes in font sizes make every page a visual treat, while crafted newspaper articles and blog entries expand the realms of possibility.
Jabberwalking is a vibrantly unique stand-out, both as a work of poetry and self-expression, as well as a DIY call for kids to create poetry and express yourself. It might confound some readers, but I believe most will be ignited by his juicy use of language ("blue-cheesy" is a descriptor that pops up on almost every page in a multitude of ways) and playfully humor perspective on the world.