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INTERVIEWS:

Amazing Places

By Lee Bennett Hopkins
Illustrations by Christy Hale, Chris Soentpiet

1. How did you choose what places to feature in Amazing Places? Were there any places that you wanted to include, but there was no room?

I chose both famous and lesser known sites to give a broad picture of places in the United States that emphasize America's diversity. I include famous landmarks such as Fenway Park and Niagara Falls where visitors from all walks of life sightsee. I wanted to highlight lesser known, but important parts of our cultural heritage such as the Watkins Museum of History in Lawrence, Kansas, where a small, but so important exhibit praises one of America's greatest poets, Langston Hughes, and the Oneida Nation Musuem, near Green Bay, Wisconsin, which preserves a history of Native American life.

2. If you were stranded on a desert island, what one book would you choose and why?

I would surely take A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole (Grove Press, 1980) so I could continue to laugh out loud at this rollicking novel.

3. You worked with a few of the same poets in Amazing Faces, but there are also a number of different poets too! How do you choose which poets to collaborate with?

I choose poets whom I feel will relate to certain subjects.

4. How would you convince someone who says he or she is "not a poetry person" to give poetry a try?

I would simply say, "O! what you are missing in your life!"

5. You have had a long and wonderful career in children's books What are a few of the biggest changes you've seen in the industry during your time there?

The answer to this question would fill one or several books! Despite the constant upgrading of technology, there is far too little face-to-face communication.

6. As an anthologist, do you have any poets on your "dream list" that you'd love to work with one day? Who are your top 3 poets?

I work with the best poets writing for children or who wrote for children. I also have a commitment to give new voices a chance to appear in a collection since poetry per se is so hard to get published.

About This Title

Guided Reading:

S

Lexile:

NP

Interest Level:

Grades 1 - 8

Reading Level:

Grades 4 - 5

Themes

African/African American Interest, Asian/Asian American Interest, Cultural Diversity, Environment/Nature, Exploring Ecosystems, Geography, Human Impact On Environment/Environmental Sustainability , Latino/Hispanic/Mexican Interest, Nature/Science, Comparing/Classifying/Measuring, Home, Multiethnic interest, Native American Interest, Similarities and Differences, United States History, Childhood Experiences and Memories

Collections

High-Low Books for Preteens (Grades 4-6), Poetry Grades 3-6, Lee & Low Poetry Collection, Bank Street College of Education Best Books of 2016 Collection, Earth Day Poetry Collection , California Book Collection , Pedro Noguera Diverse Collection Grades 3-5

Diverse Backgrounds Collection English 6PK

Fluent English, Fluent Dual Language , English Guided Reading Level S

More Info

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