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Poetry for Kids: William Shakespeare

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Love! Betrayal! Ambition! Tragedy! Jealousy! Williams Shakespeare's universal themes continue to resonate with readers of all ages more than 400 years after his death. This wonderful, fully illustrated book introduces children to the Bard and 35 of his most famous and accessible verses, sonnets, and speeches. From “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” to “O, she doth t Love! Betrayal! Ambition! Tragedy! Jealousy! Williams Shakespeare's universal themes continue to resonate with readers of all ages more than 400 years after his death. This wonderful, fully illustrated book introduces children to the Bard and 35 of his most famous and accessible verses, sonnets, and speeches. From “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” to “O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!” and “All the world’s a stage,” the words of the greatest playwright and poet spring to life on the page. The next generation of readers, poets, and actors will be entranced by these works of Shakespeare. Each poem is illustrated and includes an explanation by an expert and definitions of important words to give kids and parents the fullest explanation of their content and impact.


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Love! Betrayal! Ambition! Tragedy! Jealousy! Williams Shakespeare's universal themes continue to resonate with readers of all ages more than 400 years after his death. This wonderful, fully illustrated book introduces children to the Bard and 35 of his most famous and accessible verses, sonnets, and speeches. From “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” to “O, she doth t Love! Betrayal! Ambition! Tragedy! Jealousy! Williams Shakespeare's universal themes continue to resonate with readers of all ages more than 400 years after his death. This wonderful, fully illustrated book introduces children to the Bard and 35 of his most famous and accessible verses, sonnets, and speeches. From “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” to “O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!” and “All the world’s a stage,” the words of the greatest playwright and poet spring to life on the page. The next generation of readers, poets, and actors will be entranced by these works of Shakespeare. Each poem is illustrated and includes an explanation by an expert and definitions of important words to give kids and parents the fullest explanation of their content and impact.

30 review for Poetry for Kids: William Shakespeare

  1. 4 out of 5

    [Shai] Bibliophage

    I was expecting that the odes of Shakespeare in this book will be much easier to understand as the target audience of this is kids. I appreciate that the publisher, Quarto Publishing Group, put the original of some of the famous poem of Shakespeare just like the well-known quotes, “To be, or not to be, that is the question” and “O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?” The summary of the life of William Shakespeare was in the Introduction of the book; it is a great way to teach you I was expecting that the odes of Shakespeare in this book will be much easier to understand as the target audience of this is kids. I appreciate that the publisher, Quarto Publishing Group, put the original of some of the famous poem of Shakespeare just like the well-known quotes, “To be, or not to be, that is the question” and “O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?” The summary of the life of William Shakespeare was in the Introduction of the book; it is a great way to teach young children about who this marvelous and prominent personality in the world of literature. The book also has the “What William Was Thinking” part that contains the short explanation of each verse. In addition, there are definitions to some of the profound words used, and there are corresponding illustrations in each poem that will delight those who will check out this book. However, I hope that these odes were explained further in this children’s book so that kids could comprehend them better. As a whole, I found that this book will please more the older readers such as parents and teachers. Kids might not be thrilled with the idea of reading the poems of Shakespeare because they are not in modern English, which makes them quite hard to understand. If only there were thorough explanations available, I’m certain that young readers will love and treasure this book because it will be a huge help, especially in their school homework.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Cassandra

    This was an absolutely gorgeous collection of selected William Shakespeare poems, brought together with lovely illustrations to create a stunning children's book. Although it is listed as a children's book, i certainly feel that it could be helpful for young adults as well as children. We all know that Shakespeare can be beautiful, but sometimes hard to understand for some at times, and this book does a wonderful job of keeping things simple, by including the description of lesser known words at This was an absolutely gorgeous collection of selected William Shakespeare poems, brought together with lovely illustrations to create a stunning children's book. Although it is listed as a children's book, i certainly feel that it could be helpful for young adults as well as children. We all know that Shakespeare can be beautiful, but sometimes hard to understand for some at times, and this book does a wonderful job of keeping things simple, by including the description of lesser known words at the bottom of each poem. I can honestly say that i truly loved this book from cover to cover. I received this book as an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Laura (Book Scrounger)

    Confession: I've never been a big fan of Shakespeare. Hopefully I won't get my English degree revoked for saying that, but I didn't really encounter him much until college, and reading numerous lines of 400-year-old dialog full of words I didn't recognize just didn't excite me much. Of course, I still respect very much his contributions to the English language, but I suppose my interest in Shakespeare has been more historical than literary. So I suppose the collection in Poetry for Kids: William Confession: I've never been a big fan of Shakespeare. Hopefully I won't get my English degree revoked for saying that, but I didn't really encounter him much until college, and reading numerous lines of 400-year-old dialog full of words I didn't recognize just didn't excite me much. Of course, I still respect very much his contributions to the English language, but I suppose my interest in Shakespeare has been more historical than literary. So I suppose the collection in Poetry for Kids: William Shakespeare is perfect for people like me, or people who've never read Shakespeare at all, because it is basically his "greatest hits." (I know it says "for kids," but I imagine most readers will be teenagers or adults.) There are some short snippets, some longer monologues, and some sonnets, but many recognizable pieces and lines can be found here -- from Hamlet's famous "To be or not to be," to Romeo and Juliet on the balcony, the three witches with their "Double, double toil and trouble," and "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" Even aside from the major pieces, I was reminded of just how many phrases from Shakespeare are still around today, such as "mortal coil," "sound and fury," "the game is afoot," etc. Each piece includes a list of its more unusual words/phrases after it, with definitions, which is very helpful. For those who would like more Shakespeare in their home but don't want to read entire plays, this is a great addition, and the illustrations are very nice too. (Thanks to NetGalley for the review copy.)

  4. 5 out of 5

    Lara Maynard

    This book may be pegged as a book for children, but I say it's for anyone who's into Shakespeare or poetry. The editor has done a fine job of choosing some of the most accessible and memorable passages from Shakespeare's work, and I like the way that brief explanations and word definitions are included. And Merce Lopez's beautiful illustrations make the book a little gem. I was compelled to look her up online to learn about her and to see more of her work. I look forward to checking out more of t This book may be pegged as a book for children, but I say it's for anyone who's into Shakespeare or poetry. The editor has done a fine job of choosing some of the most accessible and memorable passages from Shakespeare's work, and I like the way that brief explanations and word definitions are included. And Merce Lopez's beautiful illustrations make the book a little gem. I was compelled to look her up online to learn about her and to see more of her work. I look forward to checking out more of the Poetry for Kids series. I think books from this series would be great to collect or to give as gifts. I read a digital version of this book from the publisher via Netgalley. #poetryforkids #PoetryForKids:williamShakespeare #NetGalley

  5. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Margeson

    What a fabulous concept - an ageless read, for readers 6 to 66 (and beyond)! There is a healthy variety of Shakespeare's selections/poems and the breathtaking illustrations artfully match the showcased pieces. For younger readers or more experienced readers who aren't fluent in Shakespeare's English or with bigger words in our modern usage, there are vocabulary terms italicized at the end of each poem. This book is too mature for my preschool learners but I would LOVE having a copy in my English What a fabulous concept - an ageless read, for readers 6 to 66 (and beyond)! There is a healthy variety of Shakespeare's selections/poems and the breathtaking illustrations artfully match the showcased pieces. For younger readers or more experienced readers who aren't fluent in Shakespeare's English or with bigger words in our modern usage, there are vocabulary terms italicized at the end of each poem. This book is too mature for my preschool learners but I would LOVE having a copy in my English classroom (my Master's graduation is so, so close) and I'm sure I would regularly use it during a-my poetry unit. Thank you to #NetGalley and #QuartoPublishingGroup for the opportunity to preview #PoetryForKids:WilliamShakespeare

  6. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    This is a gorgeous book. It's would make a fabulous introduction to Shakespeare's poetry for its intended audience, but I really enjoyed it myself (a 37 year old with an English Lit degree.) The introduction gives enough context to give readers a rough idea of Shakespeare's life and career, the selections are a good cross section of his work-- from sonnets to excerpts from many of his plays. After each poem/excerpt, there is a list of unfamiliar words withs simple definitions, and at the end of This is a gorgeous book. It's would make a fabulous introduction to Shakespeare's poetry for its intended audience, but I really enjoyed it myself (a 37 year old with an English Lit degree.) The introduction gives enough context to give readers a rough idea of Shakespeare's life and career, the selections are a good cross section of his work-- from sonnets to excerpts from many of his plays. After each poem/excerpt, there is a list of unfamiliar words withs simple definitions, and at the end of the book, there is a short summary about the context/main point of each selection, as well as an index of first lines. The illustrations are worth the price of the book, I think. They are beautiful and fitting, and enhance or even clarify the meaning of the words. I received a digital ARC of this one, but I'll be buying a hard copy to share with my kids.

  7. 5 out of 5

    connie

    5/5 stars I received a free copy of this book on Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  I absolutely love this and desperately want a physical copy now. Taking 35 of Shakespeare's famous sonnets, verses and speeches, each of them are given their own beautiful illustration and an explanation of the content of all of the work, including definitions of words and phrases that are more complicated. I had such a great time reading this aloud to myself, looking at all of the art work. This makes Sh 5/5 stars I received a free copy of this book on Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  I absolutely love this and desperately want a physical copy now. Taking 35 of Shakespeare's famous sonnets, verses and speeches, each of them are given their own beautiful illustration and an explanation of the content of all of the work, including definitions of words and phrases that are more complicated. I had such a great time reading this aloud to myself, looking at all of the art work. This makes Shakespeare's work so much more accessible, especially for younger people just beginning to study him, and even as a University student I thought this was helpful and added to my knowledge of his work. Could not recommend this for kids and adults enough- it's definitely something I think everyone should own if they want an introduction to Shakespeare, or just if they enjoy Shakespeare already.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Mrs. Europaea

    It is a fact that kids benefit from exposure to the literary arts at an early age as much as they do from math, science, and nature. Poetry for Kids makes what used to be a boring and tedious educational experience, fun and engaging by breaking down the speeches and sonnets of Shakespeare into small bits of engaging content that younger children can grasp and appreciate. The illustrations compliment the text and are in its own right a visually pleasant experience all by itself.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Tarah Hodges-Wilkins

    I can’t give enough praises to this book. Not just from myself but even from my 6 year old daughter. She loved it and has asked me to read it to her almost every night since receiving it. The illustrations are phenomenal!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Cait Hutsell

    Shakespeare + art? Sign me up. I think this is a great companion for any teacher of the Bard.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rebekah

    This is a wonderful illustrated anthology of the most famous excerpts from the great works of William Shakespeare. The beautiful pictures and footnote definitions of the more difficult to understand terms make Shakespeare all the more appealing and interesting to child and adult readers alike. This book would make a great gift to introduce young readers to Shakespeare.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

    This is a wonderful book to introduce young children to classic Shakespeare! Short excerpts of great sonnets, poems and plays by Shakespeare. I love that the book includes definitions of language children may not be familiar with, and at the end of the book there is insight into each of Shakespeare's writings!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sam (RiverMooseReads)

    I thought this was a great little selection. Definitely a good Shakespeare starter pack. I really loved the watercolor illustrations throughout, and the footnotes that explain the more difficult words/phrases for readers would definitely help kids.  I think calling this for kids a a bit of a stretch though, because I'd say there isn't much that makes Shakespeare easy for younger kids beyond the Wishbone books, these aren't modern english translations, so its probably great for older kinds, maybe I thought this was a great little selection. Definitely a good Shakespeare starter pack. I really loved the watercolor illustrations throughout, and the footnotes that explain the more difficult words/phrases for readers would definitely help kids.  I think calling this for kids a a bit of a stretch though, because I'd say there isn't much that makes Shakespeare easy for younger kids beyond the Wishbone books, these aren't modern english translations, so its probably great for older kinds, maybe 10+ at the youngest, or even I think for my age, high school age students could probably benefit from this. I think it a good selection of his most famous sonnets and monologues, and a good way to expose kids to Shakespeare in a way less intimidating than a full play. Its fun to see just how many common phrases, even ones kids know like "double double toil and trouble" come from Shakespeare.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Katie Fitzgerald

    My four-year-old recently memorized just a snippet from The Tempest ("Where the bee sucks, there suck I..."), so I shared this book with her, just reading the poetry aloud as she played on the floor. The selected passages are a good mix of the ones everybody knows ("Romeo, Romeo;" "To be or not to be;" "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" etc.) and some that would not necessarily be readily recognizable to the average casual reader. Most of the content went over her head, but I think the rh My four-year-old recently memorized just a snippet from The Tempest ("Where the bee sucks, there suck I..."), so I shared this book with her, just reading the poetry aloud as she played on the floor. The selected passages are a good mix of the ones everybody knows ("Romeo, Romeo;" "To be or not to be;" "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" etc.) and some that would not necessarily be readily recognizable to the average casual reader. Most of the content went over her head, but I think the rhythm and cadence of the language was pleasing for her to hear. The illustrations are also well-done, and they match the mood and time period of each play and sonnet mentioned. I think this would be a nice introduction to Shakespeare for most kids, and even for adults! This review also appears on my blog, Read-at-Home Mom.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    I liked the illustrations and the fact that words and phrases were explained on the side of the page. It’s a good way to introduce children to Shakespeare!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Pop Bop

    Will's Collected Hits, Annotated This is a very nice find, either for a younger reader or for an adult who'd like to have a handy anthology nearby. We open with a brief biographical sketch that would probably be of interest to a kid reader. The author keeps referring to Shakespeare as "William", which was a bit chummy, but it occurred to me that making Shakespeare less intimidating is probably a good thing. We then proceed without further ado to the selected pieces. Of interest, each piece is foll Will's Collected Hits, Annotated This is a very nice find, either for a younger reader or for an adult who'd like to have a handy anthology nearby. We open with a brief biographical sketch that would probably be of interest to a kid reader. The author keeps referring to Shakespeare as "William", which was a bit chummy, but it occurred to me that making Shakespeare less intimidating is probably a good thing. We then proceed without further ado to the selected pieces. Of interest, each piece is followed immediately by a footnote set of definitions and explanations for unfamiliar and archaic words. Again, very helpful in that Folger Library sort of way. At the end is an index of first lines. There is also, at the very end, a listing for each piece accompanied by a one sentence summary of what the work was about. It's titled "What William Was Thinking", which again is pretty laid back, and the one line summaries/commentaries are actually perceptive and on point. You might not need a comment on, say, "The Quality of Mercy...", but a reader would probably benefit from being advised that "Over Hill, Over Dale" involves the elf Robin Goodfellow dashing about the countryside. While this is at the end of the book I'd point it out to a young reader right away. As to contents, we get all of the big speeches, sonnets, and verses. There are 35 selections, and a bit of Richard, Puck, MacBeth, each Henry, Lear, Hamlet, Caesar, Romeo, and the rest of the gang. I should also mention the illustrations that accompany the text. They appear to be along the lines of simple but expressive pencils and subdued watercolors and give the book a dreamy and fantastical, but also slightly modern, feel that adds a real touch of elegance to the project. So, an excellent find and an interesting addition to the family shelf. (Please note that I received a free advance will-self-destruct-in-x-days Adobe Digital copy of this book without a review requirement, or any influence regarding review content should I choose to post a review. Apart from that I have no connection at all to either the editor or the publisher of this book.)

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ann

    I love this series of poetry books for children but it's appropriate for all ages. I've never been a big Shakespeare fan but this book makes it easier to read and understand. Also the illustrations are beautiful and dictionary with each selection makes it easy for kids to check unfamiliar words without losing their place in the book. Many of the pieces are famous that you would probably recognize them as Shakespeare but several are lesser know and need attention. Hopefully this book will start a I love this series of poetry books for children but it's appropriate for all ages. I've never been a big Shakespeare fan but this book makes it easier to read and understand. Also the illustrations are beautiful and dictionary with each selection makes it easy for kids to check unfamiliar words without losing their place in the book. Many of the pieces are famous that you would probably recognize them as Shakespeare but several are lesser know and need attention. Hopefully this book will start a lifelong love of poetry and reading in general. Grandparents and parents should look for all the books in this series which now has 5 titles.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Ioanna

    A beautiful selection of sonnets and parts of plays from Shakespeare's works. All the parts selected were interesting, and I loved the fact that under each one there were explanations for the difficult words and terms. There is also well-researched information about Shakespeare, as well as a section called "What William Was Thinking", in which the reader gets a glimpse of Shakespeare's way of thinking. All in all, a book strongly recommended in order to familiarize children with this great mind.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Robin

    This is a cute little book of some of the famous poems and sonnet snippets from Shakespeare. My girls are a little too young to recognize many of the nuances of his work, but they seemed to enjoy the poetry aspect and the pictures. I like that all of the out of date terms were defined, giving simple 1-10 definitions in modern usage. I think that will be a great help for kids reading this book on their own.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    The pictures are beautiful, and the sections from Shakespeare that are in this book are wonderful. For every poem or monologue that is in this book, there are parts that explain the meaning of the word or what not the Shakespeare used that children may not be familiar with. I really enjoyed this book.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Toni

    This book is perfect for anyone who wants to introduce children to Shakespeare! I am a homeschooling mom and value classical/Charlotte Mason style education. We've already read the adult versions of all of his works, but this was a nice refresher and easy for anyone to understand. I highly recommend this one!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sofía Sierra

    I was given a digital copy of this book by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This is a lovely collection of poetry, accompanied by beautiful drawings that make the reading of Shakespeare more enjoyable and less tiring for children. Shakespeare can be difficult to read when you are younger, but this definitely helps with that.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Emili

    I chose to have a poetry genre because I read a study about the positive impact poetry can make on a child. This a great way for children to be able to become more aware of shared cultural terms and ideas as well.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Karl

    This is a poetry book with William Shakespeare poetry. This was published in 2018. I think this would be a great book to use to introduce poetry to the classroom.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    The illustrations.

  26. 5 out of 5

    smoreads

    For SLJ

  27. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    The illustrations in this alone make it incredible. Add a few of Shakespeare's most well known work and it is a winner.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    A great introduction to Shakespeare’s works and important contributions to the English language in short, poetic bursts.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Michele

  30. 4 out of 5

    Gurpuneet

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