________________ CM . . . . Volume XIV Number 13 . . . . February 22, 2008

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Ready for Spring.

Marthe Jocelyn.
Toronto, ON: Tundra, 2008.
16 pp., board, $8.99.
ISBN 978-0-88776-849-1.

Preschool / Birth-Age 3.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

***½ /4

   
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Ready for Summer.

Marthe Jocelyn.
Toronto, ON: Tundra, 2008.
16 pp., board, $8.99.
ISBN 978-0-88776-860-6.

Preschool / Birth-Age 3.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

***½ /4

   
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Ready for Autumn.

Marthe Jocelyn.
Toronto, ON: Tundra, 2008.
16 pp., board, $8.99.
ISBN 978-0-88776-861-3.

Preschool / Birth-Age 3.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

***½ /4

   
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Ready for Winter.

Marthe Jocelyn.
Toronto, ON: Tundra, 2008.
16 pp., board, $8.99.
ISBN 978-0-88776-848-4.

Preschool / Birth-Age 3.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

***½ /4

excerpt:

Let's get ready for spring!

Take off pajamas and choose . . .

internal art: spring
internal art: summer
internal art: winter

A pair of empty season-appropriate pajamas can be found on each book's opening page, and opposite is Jocelyn's invitation to the toddler "reader" to dress appropriately for one of the seasons. Starting next to the skin and working outward, each pair of facing pages presents articles of clothing which are sometimes unisex and other times are more gender specific. For example, in Ready for Spring, the boy or girl toddler has no choice regarding socks or shoes, but she or he can select from among pants, overalls or skirt or between a hat or cap. Though each item is labeled, the adult sharing the book with the toddler listener/viewer will likely substitute "in-home" vocabulary, and so Jocelyn's "high-tops" might just become "shoes." While Jocelyn does begin the dressing process with an "undershirt" for three of the seasons, she never provides the bottom half of "underwear" possibly because of its transitional nature with toddlers' moving from diapers to pull-ups to "big girl/big boy" underwear. With one surprise exception, each book's final double page spread reveals a seasonally dressed boy and girl engaged in an activity appropriate to the season, such as playing in the rain, raking leaves, or making a snowman. Ready for Summer offers "nothing at all" as a final clothing choice while revealing the pair of youngsters in their birthday suits cavorting beneath a sprinkler. Incidentally, Ready for Summer includes a nonclothing but essential item of wear, sunblock.

     Jocelyn's trademark collages are an important part of the four books. Appropriately, the clothing items are all clearly defined while usually being placed on a patterned or textured background. The background colors mirror the colors one normally sees during a particular season. Consequently, Ready for Summer features oranges, lush green and yellow backgrounds while Ready for Fall uses more earth tones. The coldness of winter is captured via blues, greys and off-whites in Ready for Winter while the return of sunshine and plant growth is reflected in the background colors of Ready for Spring.

     Jocelyn's board book quartet perfectly complements Barbara Reid's Zoe's Rainy, Sunny Windy, or Snowy Day board books which also link to the seasons.

     In addition to being a public library purchase, the Jocelyn quartet, if not received as a gift at baby showers, is a "must buy" by parents who want to introduce their very young children to the world of imagination contained in books.

Highly Recommended.

Dave Jenkinson, who lives in Winnipeg, MB, is CM's editor.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.
 

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