Monday, November 10, 2008

Blog Book Tour for "Amadi's Snowman" - Day One


For the next three days I am going to be featuring the book Amadi's Snowman, which was written by Katia Novet Saint-Lot

Let's begin with my review of the book:

Amadi’s Snowman
Katia Novet Saint-Lot
Illustrated by Dimitrea Tokunbo
Picture Book
Ages 4 to 8
Tilbury House, 2008, 0-88448-298-7
Amadi is not pleased when his mother tells him that Mrs. Chikodili will be arriving soon to teach him how to read. Amadi is an Igbo man of Nigeria who will be a trader, a “businessman” when he grows up. He does not think that a businessman should have to learn how to read, and so, when the opportunity presents itself, Amadi runs off.
Soon Amadi is in the market, a place that he loves. He eats a mango that he is given, and then he sees his friend Chima sitting on the ground next to a book stall. Chima has a book in his lap and he appears to be reading it. When he looks at the book Amadi sees a picture of a strange “animal with a nose that looked like a carrot.” Chima tells Amadi that the creature in the picture is something called a snowman and that it is made of “frozen rainwater.”
Amadi is surprised that Chima has been learning to read. Why would his friend want to do such a thing? Chima explains that he wants to “know more.” After all, if Chima had not read the book, then he and Amadi would not know about snow.
As they day unfolds Amadi discovers that reading not only allows you to learn new things, but reading might in fact be useful for a businessman.
Often children are very sure that they know what is right. They don’t need to learn math because they are not going to use numbers when they grow up. They don’t need to learn history because history has no relevance to life today. In this case Amadi believes that he does not need to read – until he realizes that reading will allow him to learn about all kinds of fascinating things. Through Amadi’s eyes children who think that reading and books are boring will see that reading allows people to discover all kinds of remarkable things about their world. Written from Amadi’s point of view, this picture book has a powerful message to share with children. No only will they be reminded of the value of reading and books, but they will also see that children around the world are very much the same. The voice that the author creates for Amadi is very convincing and, in its own way, eloquent.
Join me tomorrow for an interview with the author of this meaningful picture book.

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