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Joan Buchanan
Illustrated by Jirina Marion

Windsor (Ont.), Black Moss Press, 1988. 22pp, paper, $4.95
ISBN 0-88753-182-2. Distributed by Firefly Books

Kindergarten to Grade 3/Ages 5 to 8
Reviewed by Fran Newman.

Volume 17 Number 4
1989 July

"Alice liked yams for supper and nothing else would do," reads the publisher's blurb on the back of this picture-book. Alice likes yams because they are soft and mucky and yummy. Mother pleads, brother entices with peanut butter, bacon and banana sandwiches, Father offers the bribe of a chocolate bar, but Alice says no!

Alice's parents are obviously very well off because they then go on a long trip-­to Finland, where Alice searches the streets and stores for yams and finally settles for chestnut mousse (which is soft and mucky and yummy); to China, where she settles for, and likes, bean curd in black bean sauce; and to Mexico, where it's guacamole. The moral of the story is that picky (bratty?) Alice learns that there are more foods to like than she first thought.

I had a friend once who cooked for her picky son wieners and mashed potatoes every night for many years because that was all he would eat. Buchanan is writing for that child. There is also a delightful pattern that small children will pick up on.

Jirina Marion's full-colour drawings are childlike and are apt to grow on us, the adults who purchase most picture-books. For the reasonable price, it will be a good addition to your Canadiana collection.

Fran Newman, Murray Centennial Public School, Trenton. Ont.
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