________________ CM . . . . Volume XXII Number 33 . . . . April 29, 2016


The Not-So-Faraway Adventure.

Andrew Larsen. Illustrated by Irene Luxbacher.
Toronto, ON: Kids Can Press, 2016.
32 pp., hardcover, $18.95.
ISBN 978-1-77138-097-3.

Preschool-grade 2 / Ages 3-7.

Review by Reesa Cohen.

***½ /4



Theo's Poppa was an explorer.

He had been everywhere.

He kept an old trunk packed with the pictures, postcards, maps and menus that he had collected on his adventures.

Whenever Theo looked inside the trunk, she found something interesting.

How Theo just loved to look at Poppa's many keepsakes from his past! He had collected so many interesting items over the many years from his travels. As Theo explored her grandfather's fascinating chest full of mementoes, she decided she would like to be an explorer just like him. With her beloved Poppa's birthday coming up, Theo has a great idea for a special present for her grandfather. Creating a new adventure for him, and with him, would be the perfect gift!

      The two conspirators plan their special day together and even sketch out a map of their route. The sounds of the streetcar ride, the details of the beach, the collecting of "treasures" and, of course, eating with gusto, the "best ever" gazpacho soup, add to the real charm of this story. The perfect ending to the day is a family birthday party and then carefully storing the mementos of their adventure in Poppa's trunk.

      Larsen describes this day with these lovely details, thereby turning a simple experience into a fully realized and exceptional day. The result is a a heartwarming tale of the bonding of two generations through shared memories. This unique adventure between Theo and Poppa will hopefully inspire young readers to create remarkable experiences with their own grandparents.

      The charming mixed media illustrations rendered in photoshop reflect the carefree and happy feel of the story. They are richly coloured, busy, full and details, and have a collage effect. The artwork has a multi-ethnic feel. Of special note are the wonderful vibrant trees.

      Poppa and Theo also star in The Imaginary Garden, which was written and illustrated by the same team.

Highly Recommended.

Reesa Cohen is a retired Instructor of Children's Literature and Information Literacy at the Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, MB.

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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