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  Tap Dancing on the Roof
Tap Dancing on the Roof
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Tap Dancing on the Roof: Sijo Poems
illustrated by Istvan Banyai
Clarion Books, 2007
48 pages, ages 4 and up

A sijo, a traditional Korean verse form, has a fixed number of stressed syllables and a humorous or ironic twist at the end. Like haiku, sijo are brief and accessible, and the witty last line winds up each poem with a surprise. The verses in this book illuminate funny, unexpected, amazing aspects of the everyday—of breakfast, thunder and lightning, houseplants, tennis, freshly laundered socks. Carefully crafted and deceptively simple, Linda Sue Park’s sijo are a pleasure to read and an irresistible invitation to experiment with an unfamiliar poetic form. Istvan Banyai’s irrepressibly giddy and sophisticated illustrations add a one-of-a-kind luster to a book that is truly a gem.


“Fresh and collegial, this offering stands out.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Banyai's illustrations enhance the collection with an extra element of wit and imaginative freedom.”—Horn Book

“Park wants readers to try sijo for themselves, and in an extensive author's note she offers history, advice and encouagement.”—Publishers Weekly

“A smart and appealing introduction to an overlooked poetic form.”— School Library Journal, starred review

“With this lighthearted collection of her own sijo, the form will take a flying leap into the consciousness of both children and teachers.”—Booklist, starred review

Selected Awards

The Lion and the Unicorn Prize for Excellence in North American Poetry
ABC Children's Booksellers Choice Award

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