Gone Fishing: A Novel in Verse
Nine-year-old Sam loves fishing with his dad. So when his pesky little sister, Lucy, horns in on their fishing trip, he’s none too pleased: “Where’s my stringer? / Something’s wrong! / The princess doll does not belong!” All ends well in this winsome book of poems—each labeled with its proper poetic form, from quatrain to tercet. Together the poems build a dawn-to-dusk story of a father-son bond, of sibling harmony lost and found—and most of all, of delicious anticipation. Charming line drawings animate the poetry with humor and drama, and the extensive Poet’s Tackle Box at the end makes this the perfect primer to hook aspiring poets of all ages.
How did Les Misérables inspire Tamera Will Wissinger when writing Gone Fishing? Via Write All the Words!:
I had developed a devotion to this [Les Misérables] soundtrack; the story had seeped into me in ways that I didn’t completely understand on a conscious level until I began the edits for my children’s book, GONE FISHING: A Novel In Verse. It started with conflict – I needed more. I’d go for morning walks and listen to a bit of Les Mis. Plenty of conflict there, I remember thinking – maybe I can tackle my sibling rivalry after all. Next came rhythm and rhyme – again, I needed more, and different. That resulted in more walks and more Les Mis, where rhythm and rhyme are bountiful. Addressing my story’s poetic challenges no longer seemed insurmountable.
And so it went; strolls with Les Mis meant slowly moving my poetry forward until it was ready. It’s kind of miraculous, come to think of it, that a mighty musical work by composer Claude-Michel Schönberg and librettist/lyricist Herbert Kretzmer (translated from Alain Boublil’s French version) that grew from Victor Hugo’s post-French Revolution story written more than 150 years ago turned out to be one of the most important instructional muses for writing my contemporary children’s verse novel about a boy determined to go fishing with his dad.
Read the whole piece here.
The 2013 Poetry Kit features Gone Fishing!
Check out other great poetry titles from HMH here.