CM . . .
. Volume XI Number 12 . . . .February 18, 2005
Many will already be familiar with Georgia Graham's work as the illustrator of Bibi and the Bull and Tiger's New Cowboy Boots. In A Team Like No Other, Georgia is the author as well. She's created a very tight story of a boy out sledding with his father in Southern Alberta. What first impresses the reader about the book is how in so few words Georgia Graham is able to convey the thrill and excitement of the ride through the eyes of Stephen. When Stephen's father is knocked off the sled by a fallen log, the danger is palpable. It is up to Stephen and lead dog Skoki to stop the sled before they go over the cliff.
If the narrative is understated, the illustrations are not. Graham's realistic depictions of the big sky and mountains of Southern Alberta, done in her trademark chalk pastel and chalk pencils, are breathtaking. Each double spread is rich with detail, whether it is in the huskies, the fear in Stephen's face or in the spectacular double spread done as though from Stephen's vantage point on the runaway sled. The story also quietly deals with the subtext of the special relationship between a boy and his dog, the "team like no other."
Georgia Graham has created a wonderful story that will be read and re-read—a perfect addition to home or school libraries.
Liz Greenaway has worked as a bookseller and now resides in Edmonton, AB.
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