by Karen Benke

Shambhala Publications, $14.95, 256 pages

Rip the Page! Adventures in Creative Writing is part educational, part assignment, and part examples by famous, and not-so-famous, writers. The book is divided into almost 100 mini-chapters to get the reader’s imagination flowing. Sometimes the chapter starts by asking a question like “Why does s-e-v-e-n mean seven?” other times by educating you about something new like the Japanese poetry tanka. There are “Dear Young Writer” letters, examples of writing from authors, word lists, creativity boosting assignments, and even plenty of room to write in this book.

Although this book targets young writers, I believe it could be useful to writers of all ages who need some encouragement. In addition to prompting the reader to write, Rip the Page! will teach you new things, introduce you to new writers, and help you break through pesky writer’s block. Rip the Page! is an unpredictable book. Because it doesn’t follow a pattern, it never gets boring… each assignment is a pleasant (and sometimes crazy) surprise. This book is the ideal inspiration for a writing instructor for any age group or a parent who simply wants their child to become a better reader and writer. Everyone should enjoy a peek inside!

Jodi M. Webb