CM . . .
. Volume XVIIII Number 2. . . .September 14, 2012
The appearance of a new edition of Paul Romanuk’s Hockey Superstars signals that, unless there is a strike or lockout, another National Hockey League season is about to begin.
Once again, Romanuk, a sports broadcaster and author, maintains the annual’s familiar “sandwich” format with the “meat” portion consisting of 16 pairs of glossy pages, with the rectos resembling oversized hockey cards bearing an action, full-colour photo of one of the volume’s superstars, the entries being arranged alphabetically from the Boston Bruins’ Zdena Chara to the Florida Panthers’ Kris Versteeg. A seventeenth star, the Toronto Leafs’ Phil Kessel, is highlighted on the book’s cover, with the two-column text about hm appearing on the cover’s verso. The major text for the other NHL stars, which appears on the page facing the player’s photo, usually speaks to happenings related to the player’s previous NHL season and includes quotes by or about the player, with one comment being highlighted and bolded. “Hockey Memories” and “Did You Know?” can be found at the bottom of the text page, with both providing brief snippets of information about the page’s focal player. For example, about the Montreal Canadiens’ Tomas Plekanec, the “Hockey Memories” section informs readers that “Tomas’ first NHL game was at home on December 31, 2003, against Dallas. He was proud to have his parents there to watch him as he realized one of his life’s dreams.” while the “Did You Know?” portion states that “Tomas is an excellent inline hockey player and has, on several occasions, represented the Czech Republic in international tournaments” On the photo page, Romanuk provides the player’s stats for the previous season as well as his draft ranking and first NHL team, date and place of birth, position, height and weight (Imperial and metric units) plus shooting/catching handedness.
Of the NHL’s 30 teams, 15 are represented in this season’s Hockey Superstars , with two, the Bruins and the Blackhawks, each having two entries. Canada was the birthplace of seven players while another seven came from various Europe countries and the final three were born in the United States. Players who are wingers and centers constituted 13 of the entries while the remaining four were split evenly between goalies and defensemen. In terms of longevity in the league, the superstars range from the Edmonton Oilers’ rookie Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to the Anaheim Ducks’ veteran of two decades in the NHL, Teemu Selanne.
The book’s sandwich “bread” is again made up of two sections of matte pages which either provide information about the NHL and its teams or offer the book’s readers opportunities to record information as the season proceeds or to make predictions about individual players or team outcomes.
While the reader participation “bread” portions point to Hockey Superstars 2012-2013 as being an individual “home” purchase, copies in public and school libraries should also circulate well.
Dave Jenkinson, CM’s editor, lives in Winnipeg, MB, the home of the NHL’s Winnipeg Jets.
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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.