Cover image for The little buggers : insect & spider poems
The little buggers : insect & spider poems
Lewis, J. Patrick.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Dial Books for Young Readers, [1998]

Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations 21 x 24 cm
An assortment of poems featuring insects and spiders.
Added Author:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3562.E9465 L58 1998 Juvenile Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



From yellow jackets to termites, praying mantises to doodlebugs, no ?little bugger? has been overlooked inJ. Patrick Lewis's clever collection of verse paired with the outrageous and vibrant art of Victoria Chess. Young readers will squirm with delight at both commonly known insects such as the cricket and the ladybug, and lesser known ones such as the silverfish and stinkbug. All the creatures are presented with descriptions true to their natures but in fun and zany scenarios.J. Patrick Lewis is the author of many highly regarded books of verse for young readers. Of A Hippopotamusn't, a starred Booklist review declared, ?If wordplay were an Olympic event, Lewis could go for the gold.' Victoria Chess's illustrations for Ten Sly Piranhas were praised by The Horn Book as ?gleefully fiendish.'

Author Notes

J. Patrick Lewis was born on May 5, 1942. He is a poet and prose writer who is known for his children's poems. He worked as a professor of economics before devoting himself full-time to writing in 1998. He is the author of 90 children's books including: BoshBlobberBosh, Please Bury Me in the Library, A Hippopotamusn't, First Dog, Spot the Plot, The House, and The National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry. In 2014, his title Voices from the March on Washington, made the Hot Civil Rights Titles List.

He has received many awards from the American Library Association, The Golden Kite Award from the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, the Claudia Lewis Award from The Bank Street School and others. He also received the 2010-11 National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) Excellence in Children's Poetry Award. He was also named the third, U.S. Children's Poet Laureate for 2011-2013 by the Poetry Foundation in Chicago.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 5^-9. Although the title is certain to raise the eyebrows of some British library patrons, Lewis' bug poems will tickle the funny bones of the elementary-school set. Twenty-four poems in a picture book format occasionally celebrate the beauty of insects (the ladybug is a "speckled spectacle of spring"), but they arouse a giggle more often than they spark a sense of wonder--as, for instance, when the groom disappears after a spider weds a fly. Chess' watercolor-and-ink pictures are a good match for the slightly macabre humor. The insects and spiders are a chunky, wild-eyed group, and most have shoes enough for all their feet. Not as rich or as deep a collection as Douglas Florian's Insectlopedia [BKL Mr 15 98], but this will be good fun as an additional purchase. --Susan Dove Lempke

Publisher's Weekly Review

The nimble duo behind A Hippopotamusn't and Ridicholas Nicholas returns with another hilarious poetry collection. Lewis displays his gift for verbal pyrotechnics as his wandering eye alights on a motley assortment of "little buggers." Grounded in careful observation that ferrets out realistic details of the insect world, his agile verse is both clever and devilishly funny, and it sparkles with descriptive gems (of a damselfly, "her motor hums/ all summer long to bullfrog drums"). Whether poking fun at an insect wedding ("Monarch caterpillar bridesmaids in so many pairs of shoes"), after which the groom mysteriously disappears on the honeymoon ("something always goes awry/ At the Marriage of a Spider to one more Bluebottle Fly!"), or warning those bathroom loiterers, the silverfish, to beware of middle-of-the-night intruders ("They stumble in at 2 a.m.,/ Turn on the light and flush the john..../ And some of Them have nothing on!"), Lewis wields his pen with a wink and a nod. Chess, meanwhile, gleefully unleashes a battalion of toothsome bugs with little humanoid faces, all delicately picked out in watercolor and sepia. Among her droll details, her scorpion sports a sombrero and four pairs of cowboy boots; her walking stick has his shoes on backward. Fleas, crickets, butterflies, ants‘the gang's all here. Kids should take to this buzz-worthy book like flies to honey. Ages 4-8. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 1-4‘This collection of light verse about insects and spiders ranges from free form to rhyming stanzas. Subjects include a vegetarian spider who passes up a cicada and "The Almost Indestructible Last Housefly of Summer" who "Wipes his feet/On...NutraSweet!/Hear the ZZZZZ/Of housefly buzz?/That is what he is/‘or was!" Most are infused with offbeat, slightly macabre humor. Delicate, fiendishly agile illustrations in watercolor and sepia offer a perfect complement to the tone and humor.‘Sally R. Dow, Ossining Public Library, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.