CM Archive
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Amanda Lewis
Illustrated by Heather Collins
Toronto, Kids Can Press, 1992. 96pp, paper, $9.95
ISBN 1-55074-052-0. CIP

Grades 3 to 6/Ages 8 to 11

Reviewed by Terri MacLean

Volume 20 Number 3
1992 May

Amanda Lewis, who has been a calligrapher for fifteen years, has been surrounded by writers all her life. Writing, her first book for children, is an attempt to share with them her love of the written word: "I want to liberate letters from their work-a-day world and help kids discover the joy and fun of writing."

Writing, a comprehensive work complete with glossary and detailed index, takes the reader all the way from pre-writing forms to bliss and braille. The book is interspersed with many easy-to-do activity pages that can be used by teachers and students.

In five chapters Lewis covers the history of writing and invites children to try their hand at Chinese brush writing and soap carving, describes various writing imple­ments and gives detailed directions for making your own paper, describes various lettering styles, including simple calligraphy and handwriting analysis, deals with publishing and gives a very readable account of the development of the printing press, and encourages children to become writers and gives many suggestions for writing poetry, plays and dialogue, as well as an explanation of what is meant by freedom of expression, censorship and graffiti.

Amanda Lewis's effort is well supported by black-and-white charcoal sketches by Heather Collins. Detailed diagrams accom­pany all the activity suggestions as well.

Writing would be a very useful teacher reference as well as a book that children would enjoy reading.

Terri MacLean, Elora Junior Public School, Elora, Ont.

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