CM . . . .
Volume VI Number 8 . . . . December 10, 1999
My dad is very special. We play with toys, and look at books. My dad and I like to go for walks. Sometimes we walk to the park or go for ice cream. I like to help my dad buy groceries. When we cook together, I set the table. At the end of the day, my dad gives me a bath, and helps me comb my hair. I love my dad and my dad loves me. My dad!Families is a wonderful addition to any daycare or home library. Originally published as six individual books in the "Talk-about-Books" series, Annick Press has re-released the titles - including My Mom, My Dad, Brothers, Sisters, Grandpa and Grandma - into one larger format hardcover edition. The text by Debbie Bailey is simple but not artificial and deals with things familiar to most young children, such as trips to the park, ice cream, and getting ready for bed. Colour photos by Susan Huszar are attractively framed in strong borders and feature real people in every day situations. There are no models or stiff artifical poses in this collection which makes it all the more endearing. It is also ethnically diverse without looking like it tried too hard. I liked the lack of traditional stereotypes in this book. Grandmas, for example, do quilt, but they also hammer while grandpas can be in wheelchairs, or they can toboggan, ride motorcycles and work. Because the "stories" are sequential but not truly interconnected, I thought they effectively explored what makes up a family without being dogmatic about it.
My two-and-a-half year old was quite taken with it, too.
Liz Greenaway is a former bookseller living in Edmonton, AB.
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