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David Booth and Stanley Skinner

Toronto, Globe/Modern Curriculum Press, 1990. 252pp, paper, $8.95
ISBN 0-88996-174-3. CIP

Grades 9 and up/Ages 14 and up
Reviewed by Kenneth Elliot.

Volume 18 Number 3
1990 May

This compact volume gives a description and analysis of seventeen types of novels. These include adventure novels, animal stories, biographies, classics, diaries, fantasy, horror, mysteries, myths, etc. It essentially is a book about the novel itself.

The authors have made their work with the student in mind. Each kind of novel under study receives a one-page analysis of the genre and three excerpts from novels illustrating that particular genre. At the end of the selection there are from two to five essay-type questions relating to each of the excerpts as well as to the analysis of the specific genre.

The table of contents, which is organized very well, highlights each genre of novel and lists the three selections. The work concludes with an index of authors and with an index of excerpt titles.

The authors have demonstrated their pedagogical skill in the succinct analysis of each novel and in the relevant questions, which encourage the student to explore more fully the material contained in the excerpts. They have put into the hands of the student a thesaurus of literary works. Through it the student will be able to reflect on his/ her experience with the story and come to see it in the perspective of its place in his/her own personal library of literary experience.

About Novels should be required reading in any secondary English curriculum.

Kenneth Elliot, Laval Catholic High School, Chomedey, Que.
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