CM . . .
. Volume XXIV Number 32. . . .April 20, 2018
Lora Rozler. Illustrated by Jan Dolby.
Markham, ON: Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 2018.
32 pp., hardcover, $18.95.
Etiquette for children and teenagers-Juvenile literature.
Preschool-grade 2 / Ages 3-7.
Review by Tamara Opar.
I thank my lucky stars for treasures,
big and small. I’m grateful each day,
An energetic little girl leads the reader through a celebration of the little things that enrich our lives every day. She is thankful for everything from sidewalk masterpieces and ice-cream in a heat wave to magic beans that reach the sky and concerts in the kitchen. Each of her thoughts receives a thank you in one of the 32 languages represented in this colourful picture book. Thank you is spelled out in the English alphabet for all of the languages represented, including Greek, Somali, Cree and Cantonese, and then followed by a pronunciation guide and a listing of the language.
Lora Rozler’s picture book is a wonderful introduction to ethnic diversity for young children as we don’t often see so many languages represented in picture books. I would suggest though that the pronunciation guide include accents to assist with reading through the book smoothly. I found myself guessing at whether or not vowels should be pronounced as long or short. Also, writing out the expression thank you in the actual alphabet of each language would have added some interest with respect to seeing the curious variety of alphabets and lettering from around the world. Children who can speak and read any of the languages represented would be delighted to see their own cultures represented in a little more depth. I work in a public library where I watch children’s eyes light up when they see that we carry books within our multilingual collections that represent the languages that they speak at home.
The theme of Lucky Me is uplifting and reminds us to thank our lucky stars for all of the good things that this world has to offer. On their website, the publisher of this title, Fitzhenry & Whiteside, provides a teacher’s guide which offers a number of activities based on the theme of gratitude. The pages are all illustrated with images from the book.
Jan Dolby’s bright and animated illustrations are created in watercolour and pencil. The young character and her friends are represented with cheerful colours, humour, ethnic diversity and overflowing imagination.
Tamara Opar is Section Head of Children’s and Teen Services at the Millennium Branch of Winnipeg Public Library.
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