CM . . .
. Volume XI Number 12 . . . .February 18, 2005
The unnamed protagonist in this story is told that Omi is coming to school to talk to the class on Grandparents' Day. Omi is an unusual character in that she doesn't seem like other people's grandmothers. Instead, she sports rubber boots held together with duct tape, collects bugs, lives on a boat, travels around the world, and speaks her mind.
At school, each child introduces his or her grandparent—all seemingly "normal" in the eyes of the main character. As expected, Omi's presentation is unlike any of the other grandparents.
Complete with sound effects, Omi describes how she got a terrible snake bite on her leg. Her story has the class riveted. At lunchtime, Omi and her grandchild wander home, and it is clear that her grandchild has a new respect and understanding for Omi and her unusual behaviour.
This is a great book for introducing important themes concerning self esteem and the value of acceptance. The story is written in the first person, providing it with a distinct and meaningful perspective. Laverdière's watercolour and mixed media illustrations are unique and memorable. Certainly, BenoÎt Laverdière's work effectively conveys Omi's exuberant personality—a well matched collaboration. A sound choice for most children's collections.
Christina Neigel is an instructor in the for the Library and Information Technology Diploma Program at the University College of the Fraser Valley in Abbotsford, BC.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.