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Wendy Orr
Illustrated by Ruth Ohi
Toronto, Annick Press, 1992. 24pp, cloth, $14.95
ISBN 1-55037-209-2. Distributed by Firefly Books. CIP

Pre-school to Kindergarten/Ages 3 to 5

Reviewed by Theo Hersh

Volume 20 Number 3
1992 May

Megan wakes up with an "Aa-choo!" She cannot go to day care today. Mother cannot stay home to take care of her because she has an important meeting, father cannot stay home because he has an important load to deliver in his truck, and Mrs. Jackson cannot come in to look after Megan because she has an important bowling tournament. Megan goes to work with mother.

Mother sets Megan up in a little make­shift bed under her desk, then leaves for her meeting. Megan is fine for a little while but becomes bored. Boredom and drinking too much juice lead to a little exploration. Eventually, an office worker knows what to do to help Megan out.

The delicate dilemma of what to do when a young child is ill and parents have to work is treated gently and humorously in both words and pictures. Difficult choices have to be made in this book, as they do in real life. The straightforward language presents the situation simply and honestly.

This would be a darker, more poignant tale if it were not for the humour Ohi injects into her illustrations, particularly in her portrayal of Megan. Megan is an adorable, impish little pre-schooler. From settling into her bed under the desk to having teddy answer the phone to finding donuts in her mother's meeting, Megan is a delight!

As for point of view, this reviewer cannot decide if the book is for parents or for children. It is a book working parents will want to share with their children. Whether or not children will be as responsive to the dilemma played out in the book remains to be seen.

Theo Hersh, Toronto Public Library, Toronto, Ont.

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