CM . . .
. Volume IX Number 2 . . . . September 20, 2002
Boys Who Rocked the World is a collection of brief biographies of young men who achieved outstanding goals in areas as diverse as sports, science, art and politics. Some of the people included are: King Tutankhamun, Galileo Galilei, Wolfgang Mozart, George Washington Carver, Albert Einstein, Dalai Lama, Elvis Presley, Pele, Chico Mendes, Stephen King, Sammy Sosa, Tiger Woods, Bill Gates, plus some men born in the 1980's like David Leung and Paul Gordon, 30 in all. As well, 30 boys wrote their answer to the question "How will you rock the world?" and provided their photos.
The purpose of these biographies is to provide hip books that encourage children to believe in themselves and to speak out in their own voices. The biographies give the reader a slice of life and a few general facts about the person, some of which are provided in a box. Basic information, such as dates of birth and death, are included, as well as some major events, but the purpose of the section is not to replicate encyclopaedia information but instead to inspire confidence. Certainly the stories of men like George Washington Carver are motivating. The eye-catching cover, in bright colours of blue and oranges and browns, is a cartoon of Tiger Woods golfing between the pyramids and King Tut skate boarding down a pyramid. Inside, Lar DeSouza has drawn caricatures of the personalities.
The reasons behind the choices of biographees are not provided, but the range is extensive. This book is useful for introductory research, and further information can be pursued from listings in a bibliography which includes websites and magazine articles as well as books. At the book's conclusion, readers are invited to send their dreams to the publisher.
Meredith MacKeen is the teacher-librarian at Glen Stewart Elementary School in Stratford, P.E.I.
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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.