CM Archive
CM Archive Book Review line

Christine Laporte.
Illustrated by Judie Shorte.

Toronto, Three Trees Press, c1982.
unpaged, paper, $11.95 (paperbound boards), $4.95 (paper).
ISBN 0-88823-055-9 (paperbound boards), 0-88823-056-7 (paper).

Grades 4 and up.
Reviewed by Margaret Montgomery.

Volume 11 Number 3.
1983 May.

This book has a problem not uncommon to Canadian books: it lacks an audience. It is written at the grade 7-8 reading level (Fry graph); it features double pages of unrelieved type interspersed with grey (black-and-white if you insist, but they look dull and grey) illustrations. There are in all twenty-three pages of print and nine of the full-page illustrations. The size of the book and its bright cover lead one to consider it a picture book but the interior dispels that notion. The story itself is a complex one concerning a rich merchant's search for his Prince who has escaped to the Northern Isle to avoid his now-dead father's constant wars. Evidently the theme is meant to be "swords into ploughshares," but the long involved story tends to obscure that idea.

I noted that the women do nothing useful; indeed, they are treated in the "do not bother your pretty little head" way. I also noticed spelling mistakes and errors of logic in the text: the buildings were "razed" but the walls are still standing; during a storm the merchant watches the moon; he goes "under" the drawbridge in his carriage; a plague is reported to have decimated the population of the town, but the characters in the book are apparently immune. Not recommended.

Margaret Montgomery, West Vemon E. S., Vemon, BC.
line indexes


1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


The materials in this archive are copyright © The Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission Copyright information for reviewers

Young Canada Works