CM . . .
. Volume XX Number 20. . . .January 24, 2014
Munsch Mania! contains five Munsch authored and Martchenko illustrated stories that were originally published between 2005 and 2008, with all of them having been previously reviewed in CM. However, The Ocean Goes on Forever, the last story in this collection, is a new tale, and instead of bearing Martchenko's familiar humourous art work, it was illustrated instead by Jay Odjick. Two other value-added aspects are included in Munsch Mania!. At the end of each “book”, Munsch has added a page in which he explains how that particular story came into being. As well, the book's final page provides brief biographies of Robert Munsch, Michael Martchenko and Jay Odjick.
The collection’s “new” story is The Ocean Goes on Forever, and a prefatory note explains:
The story’s brief text is actually rendered in three languages, English, French and Ainishinaabemowin. Vincent, the young narrator, wants to go out on the ocean salmon fishing with his father and uncle, “but they didn’t take me. I was too little.” Vincent then shares with readers three things that he did that proved to him, at least, that “I was not too little.” When Vincent uses these happenings as proof to his father that he is not too little, his father agrees and says “that I [Vincent] could go out on the big boat on my next birthday.” However, the day before that birthday, Vincent’s father and uncle go fishing again, but this time they do not return. A few days after Vincent’s birthday, a friend’s father invites Vincent to join him on his fishing boat, and while they are out fishing, this man shares the story’s closing observation: “... things come and things go, but the ocean and the people, we go on forever.”
In Munsch’s explanation about the origin of The Ocean Goes on Forever, he writes:
The artist, Jay Odjick, has a comics background, and this style of illustration works well with the story’s serious subject matter.
Like the other Munsch compilations, Munsch Mania! offers excellent monetary value, especially if parents or librarians were considering purchasing the six books as separate volumes. The book's increased dimensions will also make the illustrations much more visible when the stories are read to small groups of listeners. Munsch Mania! would make a fine gift for an individual child or a most useful addition to school or public library collections.
Dave Jenkinson, CM's editor, lives in Winnipeg, MB.
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other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
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.