CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 38 . . . . June 1, 2012
The latest book in the "Larger than Life" series explores the extraordinary life of a Canadian racehorse born in 1961 in Oshawa, ON. Before Northern Dancer's family is introduced in chapter one, a brief introduction summarizes his life's accomplishments. The following chapters focus on the horse's training (which differed from the usual North American methods), his racing career, and the jockeys who agreed to ride Northern Dancer. Photographs, media clippings and first-person accounts capture the history of the time. Colourful sidebars of information appear in every chapter. They provide detail and context to topics such as horse injuries, racetrack auctions, and the Triple Crown. Joyce's account of Northern Dancer's life doesn't conceal the challenges and hardships he faced over his 29 years of life. His appearance wasn't impressive, he lost races and he was injured, but he had the strength and talent to surprise the people who had no hope for his future. After the thoroughbred's retirement, Northern Dancer's fame and popularity expanded because he became "the most important sire of the century". A timeline, index and glossary (no pronunciation guide) complete the book. This nonfiction book would be an excellent source of information for school papers on Canadian horses or sports legends or for those interested in recreational reading about remarkable animals. Joyce is also the author of Sidney Crosby: Taking the Game by Storm.
Tanya Boudreau is a librarian at the Cold Lake Public Library in Cold Lake, AB.
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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.