- Title and author: Charley Poon’s Pomes by Robin Hawdon and illustrated by Wendy Halle
- Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
- Date published: November 7, 2017
- Pages: 70
- Genre: childrens fiction / poetry
Unable to find good funny poems to read aloud to his grandchildren – other than the seventy year old A.A. Milne classics – British playwright Robin Hawdon sat down to write some himself. The result is this collection of thirty hilarious and touching poems, beautifully illustrated by Wendy Hoile, which recount the exploits of young Charley Poon – every parent’s nightmare – and his eccentric menagerie of nursery animals.
The poems cover everything from youthful games and exploits, to the problems of growing up, to the ups and downs of school and family life, and the joys of country and seaside holidays. Parents and grandparents will be delighted to have something new and entertaining with which to occupy those tricky lights-out bedtime moments.
Meet the author: Dividing his time between Bath, Australia and the South of France, actor, playwright and grandfather Robin Hawdon has enjoyed a successful forty year career in the entertainment industry. During the early years he was a regular face on British TV — appearing in many series and co-starring with Michael Crawford in ITV’s ‘Chalk and Cheese’ and starring in a number of films. He has trod the boards as Hamlet, Henry V and Henry Higgins in Pygmalion
and in leading roles in London’s West End. Later his love of writing dominated his career and he is now recognised as one of the UK’s most prolific comedy playwrights —with productions including The Mating Game which has played in over thirty countries and Don’t Dress For Dinner which ran in the West End for six years before playing on Broadway and around the English speaking world. Many of his plays are published by Samuel French and Josef Weinberger. Robin has also directed a number of stage productions, and in the 1980’s founded the Bath Fringe festival, and subsequently became Director of the Theatre Royal Bath, England’s premier touring theatre. He has written several novels including A Rustle in the Grass, published by Hutchinsons in 1984 and republished recently by Thistle. A second novel, The Journey was published in 2002 by Hawthorns and a third, Survival of the Fittest, by SBPR in 2013. His first foray into children’s literature,
Charley Poon’s Pomes turned out to be much more than I expected. The writer uses a variety of poetic cadences for the different pieces. The book begins with one of my favourites, limericks! As entertaining as the poems are, they highlight the simple joys, mysteries and challenges of childhood. There were several poems that dealt with more serious subjects such as grownups and “If I was God”.
The illustrations are charming and there are plenty of wonky words and tongue twisters to wrap your brain around. I really enjoyed the section entitled “SPELLING”. My favourite animals were Sammy the Snouse and Squawker the Cockatoo.
Some of the poems in the book remind of ee cummings’ poetry, who happens to be one of my favourite poets.
A lovely poetry book that can be enjoyed by children (and adults) of all ages.