Levy has received numerous awards for her work, including both a Lee Bennet Hopkins Award and Honor Award and a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award. Her books have been included on the American Booksellers Pick of the Lists, the National Council of Teachers of English Notable Books in the Language Arts, the New York Public Library 100 Titles for Children’s Books, and have been a Junior Library Guild Selection.
About her career as a poet of children’s verse, Levy once told Contemporary Authors, “I would never have wondered about how I became a poet except that children I meet as a visiting poet frequently ask that question. And the only answer I can provide, for them and for myself, is that I don’t really know, but I think I always was. As a child I was drawn to poetry and loved hearing my mother recite poems for me that she learned when she was young. It always seemed that the poem I read or listened to was speaking to me. I could see it and feel it. The words made music and danced and played games with each other and stirred my senses. I have never stopped loving poetry, especially poetry for children. Poems are habit-forming, you know. Once you have a good taste of a flavor that suits you, you want more and more, and the pleasures stay with you always… When you read a poet’s work, you peek inside her or him, and I am no exception. As a writer I reveal myself in my poems, not intentionally, but because poetry is a natural expression of what the poet thinks, feels, and observes. It is me as silly, thoughtful, wondering, playing, discovering…I feel a special rapport with children and especially enjoy writing about the kinds of things they respond to, ordinary things that adults sometimes don’t really ‘see’ for all our modern distractions.”
- I’m Going to Pet a Worm Today and Other Poems, illustrated by Ronald Himler, Macmillan (New York, NY), 1991.
- A Tree Place and Other Poems, illustrated by Robert Sabuda, Margaret K. McElderry Books (New York, NY), 1994.
- When Whales Exhale, and Other Poems, illustrated by Judy LaBrasca, Margaret K. McElderry Books, 1996.
- A Crack in the Clouds and Other Poems, illustrated by Robin Bell Corfield, Margaret K. McElderry Books, 1998.
- Splash!: Poems of Our Watery World, illustrated by David Soman, Orchard Books (New York, NY), 2002.
- The Story of Red Rubber Ball, illustrated by Hiroe Nakata, Harcourt (San Diego, CA), 2004.
- Something about the Author Autobiography Series, Volume 22, Gale (Detroit, MI), 1996.
- Booklist, September 1, 1994, Carolyn Phelan, review of A Tree Place and Other Poems, p. 38; December 15, 1996, Hazel Rochman, review of When Whales Exhale and Other Poems, p. 723; January 1, 1999, John Peters, review of A Crack in the Clouds and Other Poems, p. 860; April 1, 2002, Shelle Rosenfeld, review of Splash! Poems of Our Watery World, p. 1322.
- Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, February, 1992, Betsy Hearne, review of I'm Going to Pet a Worm Today and Other Poems, p. 161; March, 1994, Betsy Hearne, review of The Tree Place and Other Poems, p. 225.
- Horn Book, May, 1994, Nancy Vasilakis, review of A Tree Place and Other Poems, pp. 329-330; July, 2002, Roger Sutton, review of Splash!, p. 479.
- Horn Book Guide, spring, 1997, review of When Whales Exhale and Other Poems, p. 153.
- Kirkus Reviews, September 1, 1991, review of I'm Going to Pet a Worm Today, p. 1162; April 1, 1994, review of A Tree Place and Other Poems, p. 481.
- School Library Journal, April, 1994, Meg Stackpole, review of A Tree Place and Other Poems, p. 140; December, 1996, Kathleen Whalin, review of When Whales Exhale and Other Poems, p. 131; December, 1998, Margaret Bush, review of A Crack in the Clouds and Other Poems, p. 139; May, 2002, Jane Marino, review of Splash!, pp. 139-140.
LIFE SPAN 1931–