CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 19 . . . . January 20, 2012
Justin Bieber. (My Life).
Calgary, AB: Weigl, 2012.
24 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.50 (pbk.), $23.95 (hc.).
ISBN 978-1-77071-651-3 (pbk.), ISBN 978-1-77071-647-6 (hc.).
Bieber, Justin, 1994- - Juvenile literature.
Grades 2-4 / Ages 7-9.
Review by Suzanne Pierson.
Growing up, Bieber and his mother often struggled to make ends meet. This struggle made Bieber a strong person. He worked hard on his musical skills. He practised his drums and wrote songs. He began busking on the streets of Stratford to make money for his family.
There are now 10 books in the “My Life” series, published by Weigl. Justin Bieber, Stratford’s homegrown superstar, is a natural to add to the list of biographies of famous Canadians for beginning readers and researchers.
Like the other books in the series, the cover of Justin Bieber contains a close-up of the famous teen heartthrob and his name - easy for a beginning reader to identify. The book includes facts about Bieber’s family, his successes and his challenges. A timeline near the back of the book will help students sort out the important events in Bueber’s life.
The “Write a Biography” chapter in Justin Bieber reinforces the use of libraries and books for finding information. It instructs students to choose a person they find interesting and visit a library to “find out if your library has any books about this person.” With this book, and others from the “My Life” series, in your library, students are more likely to find something about “a person they find interesting.” The “Write a Biography” chapter also includes some research questions to guide young readers in writing a biography on their own. The specific steps to writing a biography will be very useful to keep students on track and should lead to good success when they begin to work on their own.
The “Find Out More” section includes suggested websites where students can also find further information about Bieber. Because the “My Life” series is aimed at beginning researchers, and because website urls are constantly changing, it might have been a good idea to include a web searching strategy, such as ‘Go to www.askkids.com and enter the name of your person in the search box.’
The books in the series are nicely laid out with clear text on a white background bordered by a purple design of musical notes on staff lines. With their large, clear black on white text and copious photographs, these books will be an excellent addition to libraries looking for entry level biographies of famous Canadians.
Suzanne Pierson is a retired teacher-librarian, currently instructing Librarianship courses at Queen’s University in Kingston, ON.
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