CM . . .
. Volume XXIV Number 24. . . .February 23, 2018
Guess How Much I Love Hockey.
Harry Caminelli. Illustrated by Mark Kummer.
Oakville, ON: Flowerpot Press (Distributed by Thomas Allen & Son), 2017.
32 pp., hardcover, $9.99.
Kindergarten-grade 2 / Ages 5-7.
Review by Dave Jenkinson.
Do you love hockey THIS much?
No, I love hockey more than that, because the STICKS are awesome! There are LEFTIES, RIGHTIES, and STRAIGHTIES. Did you know they used to be made from IRONWOOD because it was so strong? Then they used lighter woods, such as ASPEN, then FIBERGLASS, and then ALUMINUM with REPLACEABLE BLADES. Most players today use COMPOSITE STICKS, because they are light and can add speed to their shot.
Guess How Much I Love Hockey is divided into a dozen "topical" double-page spreads: PUCKS, STICKS, EQUIPMENT, SHOTS, GOALS, POSITIONS, PLAYS, TEAMWORK, ARENAS, MUSIC and AWAY GAMES.
On each labelled double page spread, a player asks the same "Do you love hockey THIS much?" question of another player, each time holding his/her hands a bit further apart, until, by the final page pairing, the questioners's hands are spread wide apart. In every case, except at the book's conclusion, the responding player answers in the negative, adding "I love hockey more than that, because..." before going on to provide the reasons for her/his greater love for the game. When a player finally responds in the affirmative to the question being asked by a player with fully outstretched arms, the respondent explains, "YES!" (in large yellow font) I love hockey that much, because it is awesome and THE COOLEST AND FASTEST GAME ON EARTH. In this main text, all the words that appear in bold in the review are actually printed in a variety of colours.
In addition to the information provided by the main text, a cartoon rodent, Ronnie the rink rat, appears in every spread where he dispenses three brief "really awesome facts about hockey" that relate to the spread’s theme. For instance, on the "STICKS" pages, one of the text boxes explains that "Players tape the blade of their stick to prolong its life and to create friction between the stick and the puck."
On the last page, a glossary entitled "Hockey Lingo" contains 40 terms related to the game.
From the opening endpapers through to the closing endpapers, Kummer's cartoon-style illustrations are bold, bright and engaging as well as being gender and racially inclusive.
Overall, Guess How Much I Love Hockey is a fun, informative read, one that will be enjoyed by its early years audience.
Dave Jenkinson, CM’s editor, lives in Winnipeg, MB.
© CM Association
University of Manitoba
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