HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: A Bee Named Bea and Other Poems
Author: Candace A. Dietz
Illustrator: Virginia J. Rost
Publisher: Mixed Media Memoirs, 2013
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Reading level: Ages 2 and up
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Dietz, Candace A. A Bee Named Bea and Other Poems (published in 2013 by Mixed Media Memoirs LLC, 2802 W. Carrera Ct., Green Bay, WI 54311). Do you like funny poems? From “An Alligator Named Augie” that makes friends with a froggy and “A Bee Named Bea” that everyone is afraid of, through “A Deer Named Stan” that had a bad habit of sneering at everything and “A Dolphin Named Quinn” that makes number figures in the ocean, to “A Turtle Named Shelly” that is so smelly he needs to take a bath and “A Little Girl Named Kempie Pearl” who always says “no no” to just about everything, A Bea Named Bea and Other Poems is book of humorous poetry for toddlers and beginning readers, but adults will enjoy reading it as well. The twenty poems tell all about the joys and problems of nineteen lovable animals and one little girl. Will Kempie Pearl ever say yes?
Each poem by author Candace Dietz, who is the mother of four children and grandmother of eight, chronicles some kind of problem or predicament and ends with a happy resolution that reinforces an important lesson. Dietz has taught Spanish for more than thirty years to students of all ages and recommends using A Bea Named Bea in early grades. Not only will children like hearing about a chameleon that can’t change color, a cow that can’t stop mooing, and a canary that can’t sing, but they will also enjoy acting out the stories in a way that can be incorporated into lessons on phonics, rhyme, and spelling. The book is beautifully illustrated with original, whimsical watercolors by artist Virginia J. Rost and would make a great bedtime selection for reading aloud.