Shapiro, Karen Jo 1964–

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article Share Article
views updated

Shapiro, Karen Jo 1964–

Personal

Born 1964; married; husband's name Steven; children: Elina, David. Education: Colby College, B.A. (English); Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology, Psy.D.

Addresses

Home and office—Greensboro, NC. E-mail—[email protected]

Career

Author and psychologist. Center for Creative Leadership, member of adjunct faculty.

Member

National Register of Psychologists, Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Association of Booksellers for Children.

Writings

Because I Could Not Stop My Bike, and Other Poems, illustrated by Matt Faulkner, Whispering Coyote (Watertown, MA), 2003.

I Must Go down to the Beach Again, and Other Poems, illustrated by Judy Love, Charlesbridge (Watertown, MA), 2007.

Sidelights

A practicing psychologist, Karen Jo Shapiro developed an early love of poetry that she indulged throughout high school and into college, where she majored in English and Spanish. As Shapiro noted on her home page, along her way to her current career were "lots of different kind of jobs trying to help people have better lives." As a writer, she has inspired readers to share her love of verse, producing the books Because I Could Not Stop My Bike, and Other Poems and I Must Go down to the Beach Again, and Other Poems.

In her verse collections, Shapiro parodies classical poems and re-fashions each traditina verse favorite into a kid-friendly version highlighted with humor. For instance, the title poem of Because I Could Not Stop My Bike, and Other Poems imitates the rhyme and rhythm of Emily Dickinson's famous "Because I Could Not Stop for Death." Critics have praised Shapiro's fun and unique spin on such classical poems, Childhood Education critic Bruce Herzig noting that the book "works well as an introduction to poetry" and is even more appealing when it is read out loud. Likewise, Hazel Rochman noted in her Booklist review that Shapiro's "singing rhythms and rhymes show the fun of poetry" and will be even more appreciated by young children when read aloud.

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, February 15, 2007, Hazel Rochman, review of I Must Go down to the Beach Again, and Other Poems, p. 81.

Children Education, summer, 2004, Bruce Herzig, review of Because I Could Not Stop My Bike, and Other Poems, p. 213.

Kirkus Reviews, December 15, 2006, review of I Must Go down to the Beach Again, and Other Poems, p. 1272.

Library Media Connection, February, 2004, review of Because I Could Not Stop My Bike, and Other Poems, p. 75.

Publishers Weekly, June 9, 2003, review of Because I Could Not Stop My Bike, and Other Poems, p. 51.

School Library Journal, August, 2003, Lauralyn Persson, review of Because I Could Not Stop My Bike, and Other Poems, p. 185; February, 2007, Kathleen Whalin, review of I Must Go down to the Beach Again, and Other Poems, p. 145.

ONLINE

Charlesbridge Publishing Web site,http://www.charlesbridge.com/ (December 15, 2007), "Karen Jo Shapiro" (includes teacher's guide).

Karen Jo Shapiro Home Page,http://www.kjshapiro.com (December 15, 2007).