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Noteworthy Books on the Family

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English Titles

Graphical element: Pencil Denotes that the book is either a translation or is available in translation.

Photo of book cover: The Auction The Auction

Jan Andrews
Illustrations: Karen Reczuch
Toronto/Vancouver: Groundwood/Douglas & McIntyre, 1992
32 p. ISBN 0888991681
Graphical element: Arrow Ages 6 to 10.

Todd has come out to his grandfather's farm to help him prepare for the auction, but is hurt and disappointed that the farm must be sold. As they share stories of happier days, they remember the scarecrows Gran used to make for her garden and end up making a series of their own which they place around the auction site. A poignant story about accepting change.

The colourful pencil and watercolour illustrations enhance the sense of belonging - to farm, family and memories.

The Auction text Copyright © 1990 by Jan Andrews, illustrations Copyright © 1990 by Karen Reczuch. A Groundwood Book / Douglas & McIntyre.

Photo of book cover: The Baby Project pencil image The Baby Project

Sarah Ellis
Vancouver/Toronto: Douglas & McIntyre/A Groundwood Book, 1986
144 p. ISBN 0888990472
Graphical element: Arrow Ages 10 to 14.

When baby Lucie arrives in the Robertson household, 11-year-old Jessica is in rapture. The glow that Jessica, her elder brothers and parents feel in Lucie's presence is shattered when the baby succumbs to crib death. Jessica is struck with disbelief and she struggles to understand the mixed feelings of joy and pain that the baby brought to her family.

Ellis explores the subject of infant death with young readers in mind, using the narrative to consider questions and emotions. The author suggests that a firmer tie will exist between Jessica and her brother Simon because of their shared grief, but also that the mother's road to acceptance of Lucie's death will be difficult.

The Baby Project Copyright © 1986 by Sarah Ellis. Cover art by Harvey Chan. Douglas & McIntyre/A Groundwood Book

Photo of book cover: The Big Storm pencil image The Big Storm

Rhea Tregebov
Illustrations: Maryann Kovalski
Toronto: Kids Can Press, 1992
30 p. ISBN 1550740814
Graphical element: Arrow Ages 4 to 8.

Every day Jeanette's faithful cat walks with her part of the way to school and meets her after school on the same corner. One day there is a big snow storm and Jeanette doesn't go home right away.... Jeanette's family plays a supporting role in this gentle tale with its themes of love, friendship, loyalty and responsibility.

The nostalgic illustrations are fuzzy like warm memories.

The Big Storm by Rhea Tregebov and Maryann Kovalski. Copyright © 1990 by Maryann Kovalski

Photo of book cover: Daniel's Dog Graphical element: Pencil Daniel's Dog

Jo Ellen Bogart
Illustrations: Janet Wilson
Toronto: Scholastic, 1990
32 p. ISBN 0590732056
Graphical element: Arrow Ages 4 to 7.

This story was inspired by the African-American folktales of dog ghosts. "The dog spirit is typically seen to represent a departed loved one who returns to play a comforting and protective role." Daniel is comforted by his ghost dog after the arrival of his baby sister takes up too much of his mother's time and attention.

The vividly coloured modern-day illustrations capture the children's emotions and expressions perfectly.

Text Copyright © 1990 by Jo Ellen Bogart. Illustrations Copyright © 1990 by Janet Wilson. Reproduced by permission of Scholastic Canada Ltd.

Photo of book cover: Daniel's Story Daniel's Story

Carol Matas
Toronto: Scholastic Inc., 1993
136 p. ISBN 0590465880
Graphical element: Arrow Ages 12 to 14.

This is a story of the Holocaust and its aftermath seen through the eyes of a child growing up in the turmoil of World War II. Supported by his family, Daniel survived persecution in Frankfurt, the Lodz ghetto in Poland and Auschwitz. Millions of other Jews did not. While Daniel is a fictitious character, this poignant story is closely based on fact.

Reprinted by permission of Scholastic Inc.

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Date Created: 2001-05-29
Date Modified: 2002-09-25

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