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Ritter, Erika.

Toronto, Macmillan, c1984. 182pp, cloth, $17.95, ISBN 0-7715-9810-6. CIP

Grades 12 and up
Reviewed by Louise Griffith

Volume 13 Number 1
1985 January

Erika Ritter, author of several plays, has turned satirist and produced a volume of twenty-four short essays that offer witty commentaries on the urban scene. A wide variety of topics are covered, ranging from childhood memories of bicycles and theatrical auditions to a critical look at the institutions in today's world, including answering machines, license plate slogans, Club Med ("Club Dread"), airline stewardesses, and gourmet foods.

The book is rather negative, and rarely gives credit to worthwhile motives or genuine successes. In some of the essays, basically good ideas are developed too far, and therefore the shorter essays are the most successful. But there are many delightful flights of fancy for the reader to enjoy, such as: "Just the other day there was that piece in the paper about a bicycle that went berserk in a shopping centre, smashing two display windows before it was subdued."

Senior high school students and adults will enjoy this humorous example of current social criticism. Teachers of younger students might decide that other material is more suitable for classroom discussion.

Louise Griffith, Agincourt, Ont.
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