________________ CM . . . . Volume XV Number 11 . . . . January 23, 2009

cover Getting There. (World Vision Canada Early Readers Series).

Marla Stewart Konrad.
Toronto, ON: Tundra Books, 2009.
24 pp., hardcover, $14.99.
ISBN 978-0-88776-867-5.

Subject Heading:
Transportation-Juvenile fiction.

Preschool-grade 2 / Ages 3-7.

Review by Myra Junyk.

***½ /4

Reviewed from Final Pages.


When I have places to go,

there are many different ways
of getting there. I can walk …
or I can run.
I might ride a camel or a horse or a yak
… or pedal a bike.

Getting There, by Marla Stewart Konrad, is one of the wonderful series of books for early readers from Tundra Books in collaboration with World Vision Canada. The picture book takes readers on a wild ride through various ways that young children get from place to place in the world. There are many creative and imaginative methods of transportation explored in this short photo essay: walking, running, riding camels/horses/yaks, bicycling, swimming, and boating. Although the text is very simple, it is interesting and evocative of the many ways that young children "get there" in our world today.

internal art

     What is most amazing in this book is the integration of the lustrous photographs with the text. All of the photos seem to have been taken in Asia or Africa. The colourful and detailed photographs give readers some insight into what life might be like on those continents. Readers will be able to learn about lifestyles in other countries. They will see faraway setting as well as ethnic, cultural and socio-economic diversity. Regardless of their location, all of the young people in these photographs share a common bond — most all of them are smiling!

     Marla Stewart Konrad has created a book which will foster exploration and discussion about various transportation methods. Even though young readers may not live exactly the same way as their neighbours in Asia and Africa, they do share many things. The smiling faces of the girls and boys pedaling their bikes could be anywhere in the world! Children all over the world love the sensations of traveling "very fast…or ever so slowly." Aside from what these photographs and this interesting text can teach us about the world, the book also sends us a powerful message about our global village. We all share the same Planet Earth, and regardless of where we live, we have a lot in common. "When I have places to go, I can always get there in my dreams. Good night!"

Highly Recommended.

Myra Junyk is the former Program Co-ordinator of Language Arts and Library Services at the Toronto Catholic District School Board. Currently, she is working as a literacy advocate and author.

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

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