CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 19 . . . . January 20, 2012
Justin Bieber. (Superstars).
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2012.
32 pp., pbk. & hc., $9.95 (pbk.), $20.76 (RLB.).
ISBN 978-0-7787-7612-3 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-7607-9 (RLB.).
Bieber, Justin, 1994-Juvenile literature.
Grades 3-6 / Ages 8-11.
Review by Suzanne Pierson.
Meet Justin’s Mom
Justin’s mother is Patricia Lynn Mallette, or “Pattie” as most people call her. She was just 18 years old when she found out she was pregnant with Justin. Pattie and Justin’s dad, Jeremy Bieber, were going to get married, but they broke up when Justin was 10 months old. Pattie raised Justin on her own in Stratford. She worked hard at low-paying jobs, and she and Justin lived in public housing. The Canadian government offers public housing to people who have financial struggles. Pattie worked hard to try to make sure her only child had everything he needed.
A Canadian Superstar! Yeah. Nice to see they have added a bit more Canadian content to this series. Like the other books in the “Superstars!” series, Justin Bieber is about someone who has made it big in the entertainment business while still very young. The timelines at the back of the book identify the first steps that Bieber took to start on his career path. Like the other superstars in the series, Bieber wasn’t born famous, but, at a young age, about the same age as the book’s intended readers, Bieber was busking on the steps of the Avon Theatre in Stratford, ON. His mother posted some videos of him singing in a talent contest (where he came second) on YouTube, and the rest is the stuff of dreams to young wannbe superstars.
Following the format of the earlier books in the series, Justin Bieber takes readers through Bieber’s early years and addresses how he got started in show business. The rest of the book goes through the accomplishments of the rising star on his way to becoming a superstar. The book ends with a look ahead to what may be in Bieber’s near future. The final section is a timeline starting at birth and listing highlights and accomplishments up to August, 2011.
Justin Bieber is filled with high interest, up to date information, supported by a generous quantity of photographs. Because the text size is large, books in this series will appeal to young readers learning to read for information in nonfiction books.
Although both Justin Bieber (“My Life” series) and Justin Bieber (“Superstars!” series) cover this famous Canadian’s rapid rise to fame, the “Superstars!” series contains more information at a higher reading level. As seen in the excerpt at the opening of this review, some of the content is aimed at a more mature audience than is the case with Justin Bieber (“My Life” series). Depending on the needs of your location, you may want to invest in both books, or just one. Both are good biographies aimed at slightly different ages.
Fame is fleeting. Buy this book, and other ‘superstars’, in paperback. Bieber may have a long and successful music career ahead of him, but this book about his early years will seem dated very quickly.
Suzanne Pierson is a retired teacher-librarian, currently instructing Librarianship courses at Queen’s University in Kingston, ON.
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