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Robert Munsch and Michael Kusugak. Illustrated by Vladyana Krykorka
Toronto, ON: Annick Press, 1988.
unpaged, paper, $4.95.
ISBN 1-55037-008-1. paperbound boards, $12.95. ISBN 1-55037-009-X. Distributed by Firefly Books. CIP.

Preschool / Ages 3-4

Reviewed by André Gagnon.

Volume 16 Number 6
1988 November

Robert Munsch's latest story about Inuit creatures that live in the ocean is a collaboration with Michael Kusugak, an Inuit story-teller.

In spite of her mother's warning about the Qallupilluit, Allusha goes fishing alone on the sea ice. At the edge of the ocean, not seeing any Qallupilluit, Allusha starts doubting her mother and calls the creatures by names and goes so far as to challenge them to catch her. When the Qallupilluit finally appear, they drag Allusha down beneath the sea. She escapes by promising to bring her brothers and sisters to the sea creatures. With the help of her mother, Allusha is able to keep her promise, but when the family comes to the cracks in the sea, the Quallupilluit are not there, for they are still dancing with Allusha's father and mother in the house.

This story is another departure for Munsch. Unlike Love You Forever,¹ which also differs from his previous books, A Promise Is a Promise is a more successful story. It has suspense, magical moments and a most satisfying ending. Munsch's familiar story elements, such as repetition and songs, are integrated into the main story-line.

Krykorka's illustrations complement the text. She captures the immenseness of the far north and the closeness of Allusha's family.

A Promise Is a Promise is a welcome addition to Inuit materials for young children.

André Gagnon, Regina Public Library, Regina, SK.

¹ Reviewed vol. XV/2 March 1987, pp.78-79.

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