________________ CM . . . . Volume XVII Number 17. . . .January 7, 2011


Read Me A Story: Canadian Favourites.

Toronto, ON: Scholastic Canada, 2010.
165 pp., hardcover, $24.99.
ISBN 978-1-4431-0249-0.

Subject Heading:
Children's stories, Canadian (English).

Preschool-grade 3 / Ages 4-8.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

**** /4



About Henny Penny

Before he began working on Henny Penny, Werner Zimmerman confesses, he didn't know the folktale at all. "I didn't grow up with a lot of books, really. My mother would make up stories and tell them to us.

" He painted the book while he was living in Europe, where he spent hours drawing inside a chicken coop. "There were all these little gardens with chickens. I'd say, 'Hi, I'm an artist and I'm doing a book.' They'd look at me and they'd think, 'Oh, he's crazy,' but they'd let me go into the chicken coop.

" But why do the chickens have pots on their heads? "I walked into the kitchen and I saw this colander on the counter, and the moment I saw it I knew it was an anti-sky-falling helmet. I popped it on my head and rushed into the studio and started drawing."

The five picture books that have been anthologized in Read Me A Story were originally published between 1989 and 2005, and, since all were previously positively reviewed in CM, the specific titles will not be re-reviewed.

Henny Penny, by H. Werner Zimmerman. See review at CM Archive, Vol 17, No. 5, September, 1989.

The Party, by Barbara Reid. See review at Vol. 4, No. 8 , December 12, 1997.

A Second is a Hiccup: A Child's Book of Time, by Hazel Hutchins. Illustrated by Kady MacDonald Denton. See review at Vol, 11, No. 6, November 12, 2004.

Sophie and the Sea Monster, by Don Gillmor. Illustrated by Michael Martchenko. See review at Vol. 12, No. 11, February 3, 2006.

Too Many Books, by Gilles Tibo. Illustrated by Bruno St-Aubin. See review at Vol. 10, No. 16, April 8, 2004.

    Beginning and concluding with bright, lively endpapers, Read Me A Story, the cover of which is reminiscent of Barbara Reid's Read Me a Book, is must-buy for any school or public library. The volume's larger format (31 cm x 25 cm) makes it especially useful for reading to small groups. A bonus feature is the one page "About..." section that follows each of the individual picture books and which briefly provides the authors'/illustrators' insights into how their books were created.

    And for those parents, teachers and librarians who like a bargain, consider that this hardcover book can be purchased for less than what it would cost to acquire the five titles in the less durable paperback format. A terrific library and personal gift purchase.

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.

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