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Linda Granfield
Illustrated by Bill Slavin
Toronto, Kids Can Press, 1994. 48pp, paper, $9.95
ISBN 1-55074-144-6. CIP

Grades 2 and up/ Ages 7 and up

Reviewed by Brenda Partridge

Volume 22 Number 5
1994 October

Only one year after the publication of Extra! Extra! The Who, What, Where, When and Why of Newspapers, Linda Granfield and Bill Slavin have combined their talents to create a book for elementary school children. 1987 the Year I Was Born is a chronological presentation of daily Canadian events displayed in an eye-appealing fashion to capture the interest of trivia buffs or of children born in 1987.

The opening pages of the book are devoted to poetry and data about the days of the week and the months of the year. Each month includes a trivia box and a section called "Extra! Extra!" February's trivia highlights the number of valentines purchased in 1987, the definition of a philtrum, and an explanation of the 1920s saying, "You're the cat's pajamas." August's "Extra! Extra!" is an article about the thirty-year-old fad of frisbee flying, while May's "Extra! Extra!" features Rick Hansen's Man in Motion tour. The book has been very well researched and the selected material is of interest to all age seven and up.

Linda Granfield lives in Toronto and is the author of other reference books: Cowboy: A Kid's Album (Douglas & Mclntyre, 1993), Extra! Extra! and Canada Votes.

Bill Slavin's bright cartoon like illustra-tions add much appeal to this edition. Each month has a different coloured border, and the white background suitably highlights the many individual pictures. The illustrator's subtle humour is prevalent throughout the book - from his "raining casts and dogs" to his line-up of auditioning Snow Whites and his mud-washed jeans. Slavin has illustrated many books for children, including The Cat Came Back,3 Hockey: The Book for Kids,1 Circles: Shapes in Science, Math and Nature5 and Extra! Extra!

Teachers who have students born in 1987 would welcome this addition to their classroom libraries. As the children move into the higher grades, independent research projects could develop, using this book as a starter for topics and ideas.

I recommend this book for home, school and public library settings.

Brenda Partridge is a library-resource teacher at Percy Centennial Public School in Warkworth, Ontario.

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1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


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