Tuesday, September 15, 2009

167. Larger Than Life: True Stories of Canadian Heroes


Larger Than Life: True Stories of Canadian Heroes by Janet Lunn
Illustrated by Emma Hesse

Pages: 78
Ages: 7+
Finished: Sep.10, 2009
First Published: 1979
Genre: children, non-fiction, Canadian history
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

The morning was beautiful.



Reason for Reading: I read this aloud as part of our history curriculum this past year.

Comments: Janet Lunn is one of Canada's best children's historical fiction writers, starting writing in the 60's we are fortunate that the majority of her work is still in print. Unfortunately, this book is a bit of a rarity, no longer in print, and I could only find a few copies available on line at prices that were exorbitant simply because the book is hard to find.

This is a collection of short stories featuring true Canadian heroes, some of famous people and others of once briefly well known people who have now been forgotten to the ages. Short stories to be read in one sitting, of only several pages that jump right into the action and tell an exciting or proud moment in a person's life as they perform an act of heroism, selflessness, bravery, courage or simply doing the right thing. Well-written, Janet Lunn can be counted on to grab your attention right away and tell an interesting story. These short tales will let your children know that Canada has some very interesting people in her past. Ten stories are included in all concerning the likes of John A. MacDonald, Madeleine de Vercheres, Crowfoot, Elizabeth Roblin, Cornelia di Grassi and the Harvey children and their Newfoundland dog and others. Simple, realistic black and white drawings accompany the text, one per story allowing children a peek at the the clothing, houses, etc. of the era each story takes place in. I've only one complaint and that is the stories are not in chronological order, so I had to pre-arrange them in order so we could match them up with our studies and I just think it would make better sense for anyone to read them in chronological order anyway. A great little book and a goldmine find if you happen to chance upon it but I wouldn't recommend paying exorbitant online prices for a copy. In my mind the book's worth around $10 (and I used to deal in used books myself). So keep your eyes open at school/library sales and used book stores.

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