________________ CM . . . . Volume XIX Number 23. . . .February 15, 2013


The Naughty List.

Alain M. Bergeron. Illustrated by Sampar. Translated by Marie-Michele Gingras.
Toronto, ON: Scholastic Canada, 2012.
47 pp., pbk., $3.99.
ISBN 978-1-4431-1394-6.

Grades 1-3 / Ages 6-8.

Review by Kate Hachborn.

**** /4



This wasn't a good idea. Not at all.

My sister Isabelle and I are walking to the mall. So far one of her boots has fallen off five times!

The first time it happened, I felt sorry for her. It's freezing outside and her foot is so tiny. She had to stand on one leg in the snow. She looked like a flamingo in a snowsuit!

The second time it happened, she hid her foot up in her snowpants. Then she stuck it out and in again.

"Peek-a-boo, Dominic!" she said, giggling at her silliness.

My sister is so childish sometimes!


Dominic takes his younger sister to the mall to pick up a Christmas present for their grandpa and grandma. Before they even make it to the mall, Isabelle is causing trouble for her big brother. Though she means to behave, Isabelle can't help but get into a little trouble. Good thing Dominic is there to support his younger sister! Will they find a present for Grandpa and Grandma?

internal art     A translation of the French book Ma soeur n'est pas un cadeau!, The Naughty List is a great Christmas story for beginning readers. Each chapter contains repetitive action without becoming boring and repetitive phrases that make the meaning of the plot explicit. When Isabelle is being troublesome, Dominic will interject, "My sister is so much trouble sometimes!" Each chapter contains a "My sister is so…" moment, giving readers the opportunity to connect Isabelle's actions with Dominic's point of view. These interjections are written in such a way that Dominic acknowledges his sister's behaviour without being critical of her.

      The plot moves quickly and is full of action, though the setting does not change drastically as the characters move from store to store within the mall. The characters are not given an exact age, which makes this a read that would be appropriate for readers new to chapter books, ESL readers or struggling readers.

      Black and white illustrations break up the text and provide comical visuals for the many humorous moments in the story. The older brother/younger sister dynamic is not overplayed and makes for comic relief.

Highly Recommended.

Kate Hachborn is a library technician at the W. Ross Macdonald School in Brantford, ON.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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