________________ CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 13. . . .November 25, 2011

cover

A Newfoundland Christmas.

Dawn Baker.
St. John's, NL: Pennywell Books/Flanker Press, 2011.
21 pp., pbk., $9.95.
ISBN 978-1-926881-45-4.

Kindergarten-grade 3 / Ages 5-8.

Review by Alison Mews.

**** /4

   

excerpt:

A loud knocking startled Sarah out of her daydream.

"Any mummers 'lowed in?" many voices shouted, as a fantastic assortment of merry makers burst through the door.

There was laughing and dancing and singing and eating and teasing and guessing! Michael took a turn on the ugly stick, and Pop played the button accordian.

Most of the next morning was slept away. Nan told them they were all hangashores! However, her eyes were twinkling as she said it.

 

Sarah and her brother Michael are not pleased to learn they will be spending Christmas "down home" in Newfoundland with their Nan and Pop. Once there, though, they quickly discover an outport Christmas is an experience worth repeating. They go snowshoeing to cut down their own Christmas tree, are pulled in a sleigh by a Newfoundland pony, host visiting mummers and much, much more. They develop a taste for Nan's homemade raisin bread and toutons, and they are surprised to find even Christmas dinner is different with the addition of salt beef, pease pudding and figgy duff.

internal art     Author Dawn Baker has created a lovely picture book that showcases her outstanding artistic abilities. Her prints of outport Newfoundland scenes are sought-after in her home province (she has depicted some of her pictures in Nan & Pop's house), and this book is an excellent representation of her style. The compositions have a clean, uncluttered look that focuses attention on the central figures, and she incorporates iconic images of Newfoundland culture throughout. The story is more of a venue for the art, but it is nicely done. and where local words or phrases are used, the text is bolded and described in a glossary at the back.

      Altogether, A Newfoundland Christmas is a charming addition to the growing body of picture books set in Newfoundland and will undoubtedly be popular with schools and libraries, not to mention Canadian families with Newfoundland roots!

Highly Recommended.

Alison Mews, a recently retired librarian, lives in St. John's, NL.

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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