Cover image for A world of wonders : geographic travels in verse and rhyme
A world of wonders : geographic travels in verse and rhyme
Lewis, J. Patrick.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Dial Books for Young Readers, [2002]

Physical Description:
1 volume (various pagings) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Reading Level:
NP Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 4.1 0.5 60406.

Reading Counts RC K-2 3.9 2 Quiz: 33664 Guided reading level: P.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3562.E9465 G4 2002 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Could anyone somersault across the San Andreas fault? Why was Hawaii named after a Sandwich? Of longitude and latitude, which has more "flatitude"?

You'll travel the globe (and some of the sky) discovering answers to these and other questions you never knew to ask! There are all sorts of amazing things to know about thousands of "spaces and places to be" within the fantastical world of GE-OG-RA-PHY. Dive in, come aboard, zip along, take it slow-traveling by book is a great way to go!

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

Gr. 3-5, younger for reading aloud. Teachers desirous of introducing poetry throughout the curriculum will find plenty of poems here for the geography unit. From a pithy, informative verse on the Yellow, Red, Black, and Dead Seas to a fanciful dialogue between the two poles and the equator, Lewis crafts geographical ideas and terms into poems with facility and wit. The handsome illustrations take full advantage of the book's large format, sometimes placing a series of small pictures on a page, sometimes spotlighting a single picture over a double-page spread. The delicately shaded oil paintings have a crackled varnish, giving them a look of centuries-old paintings. Yet they have a modern spirit--sophisticated, yet still quite accessible--making an appealing package for children. Carolyn Phelan.

Publisher's Weekly Review

In Lewis's (A Burst of Firsts) witty and fact-filled collection of poems, the narrator of the opening poem urges readers to "Discover the world of GE-OG-RA-PHY!" and recommends "traveling by poem." The poet examines not only the explorers (Christopher Columbus, Ferdinand Magellan, etc.) themselves, but enough odd places and names to intrigue and tickle young readers. He offers a series of riddles about famous cities and facts about the globe ("Did you know [that] 27 Eiffel Towers and Mount Everest are equally tall?") as well as helpful mnemonic devices (e.g., in "How a Cave Will Behave": "A stalactite drips down from the ceiling./ A stalagmite grows up from the ground"). Lewis's verbal somersaults, both whimsical and plentiful, pepper the volume. As two men sit on a hilltop watching the aurora borealis, the speaker sees "clouds go by/ in colored thunderwear"; another tells of an "Archie fellow that I know/ [who] lived on an archi-pel-ago." But he and Jay (Picture This) also convey a sobering message in "Two Animals Talking": a boy says to a beetle, " `Behold all we have conquered, and/ The continents we've crossed!'/ `But since you always win,' said Beetle,/ `What have others lost?' " as the artwork shows a dark billowing cloud from a smokestack and a man chopping down a tree. The artist's many bird's-eye views brim with easy-to-recognize landmarks. She overlays each illustration with a crackle-glass web of lines. A full-scale treat for the armchair traveler. Ages 5-up. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-6-Terse verse, doggerel, and other rhymes ponder places and climes in this slim collection. In considering the question of "Who Could Somersault the San Andreas Fault?" Lewis informs readers, "Anyway, the road signs warn ya: No Jumping over California!" Christopher Columbus, Ferdinand Magellan, and the conquerors of Everest are here. There are a few questions and riddles, a visit to the desert, and a conversation between the equator and the two poles. Some selections are humorous, some flat. "A stalactite drips down from the ceiling/A stalagmite grows up from the ground." Jay's oil paintings, some full page or double spread and many vignettes, begin with a globe bearing an enigmatic face and hairline landmasses. A pleasing variety of views frame or alternate with the verses. They are sprinkled with tiny sketches of elongated humans with tiny heads and animals, sometimes in humorous poses. Crackling shellac has been laid across the paintings, suggesting, one supposes, old maps. Some of the place names and questions might inspire further investigation. "Did you know that all the people in the world could stand shoulder to shoulder in a space the size of the Indonesian island of Bali?" The moderately amusing exploration ends with a lovely blank-verse exhortation likely to endure into future collections: "Make the Earth your companion. Walk lightly on it, as other creatures do. -Let the Lake instruct you in stillness. Let the Mountain teach you grandeur-."-Margaret Bush, Simmons College, Boston (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.