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W.O. Mitchell.
Toronto, ON: McClelland & Stewart, 1989.
280pp., cloth, $26.95.
ISBN 0-7710bO73-4. A Douglas Gibson Book. CIP.

Subject Headings:
Country life-Fiction.
Saskatchewan-Social life and customs-Fiction.

Grades 10 and up / Ages 15 and up

Reviewed by Linda Holeman.

Volume 18 Number 2
1990 March

W.O. Mitchell has once again given us a delightful account of life on the Canadian prairies in the 1940s. The nameless "Kid," a young farmboy, and Jake, the hired hand, live an unexpectedly exciting life near the small sleepy town of Crocus, Saskatchewan. Mitchell creates eccentric individuals that roam in and out of Jake and the Kid's small sheltered world and create a sense of adventure and mystery in their otherwise ordinary lives. An escaped Nazi convict, the Rolling-in-the-Mud Indian family, and the Great Doctor Suhzee, World Famous Hypnotist, are but a few of the fascinating characters that make each of the book's sixteen short stories enjoyable.

The stories are composed mainly of short dialogue in straightforward language, ensuring easy reading for both the older student and adults.

W.O. Mitchell, prolific novelist, script-writer and playwright, is best known for his 1947 book, Who Has Seen the Wind (Seal Books, 1982). His original Jake and the Kid stories were broadcast on CBC radio in the 1950s, and now Mitchell has brought back the two lovable and very human characters in this gently humorous book. For teenage readers the stories offer a look back at the less complicated world that may well be their heritage.

Linda Holeman, Winnipeg, MB.
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