________________ CM . . . . Volume XV Number 19 . . . . May 15, 2009

cover Crocodile Bread.

Kathy Knowles.
Winnipeg, MB: OSU Children's Library Fund (188 Montrose St., Winnipeg, MB  R3M 3M7), 2009.
24 pp., hardcover, $13.00.
ISBN 978-0-9783384-9-7.

Preschool-grade 3 / Ages 4-8.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

***½ /4

excerpt:

On most days my grandmother and aunties shape the dough to make bread and rolls. Today is a special day. My grandmother is also making crocodile bread!

To make the body of the crocodile, she takes a piece of dough and rolls it on her long wooden table.

My grandmother makes the crocodile's feet from four small pieces of dough. She places the feet in the pan. Then she puts the body on top.

internal art

As the cover illustration makes clear, Crocodile Bread is neither bread made of crocodiles nor is it bread made for crocodiles. It is bread made in the shape of a crocodile.

     The book's narrator is 10-year-old Fransisca who lives in a compound in Nima, Ghana, with "my mother and father, one brother, four sisters, two cousins, three aunties, two uncles and my grandmother. We also have five cats and two goats. Our compound is a busy place!"

     The key player is Fransisca's grandmother, Agnes Amoah, who is a local "commercial" baker who, with her workers, normally makes bread and rolls, but who, today, is also making a special loaf of crocodile bread. Through the text and full-page colour photographs, readers follow this overnight bread making process which concludes with Fransisca, along her siblings and some friends, happily devouring the delicious crocodile.

     Despite the book's foreign setting, young readers will be intrigued by this special treat and will undoubtedly ask their parents to make a loaf of crocodile bread. As well, the contents of Crocodile Bread have social studies curricular applications. Via an e-mail to me, Kathy said that, if you want to try making your own crocodile bread, any bread recipe you have will likely work, but she will be posting one to the OSU website.

Highly Recommended.

Dave Jenkinson, CM's editor, lives in Winnipeg, MB.

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

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.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.
 

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