CM December 15, 
1995. Vol. II, Number 9

image Proud to Be a Poopini.

Dave Sindrey. Illustrated by Chum McLeod.
Toronto: Napoleon Publishing, 1995. 30pp, paper, $10.95.
ISBN 0-92914-138-5.

Kindergarten - grade 3 / Ages 5 - 8.
Review by Jennifer La Chapelle.


At school, Pogo Poopini wouldn't wear the sparkly costume that his mother had made him. Pogo wore jeans and T-shirts just like everybody else.
He didn't tell anyone about his pet anteater Lucie, who could walk a tightrope. Pogo was worried that people would think his family was weird.

 Pogo Poopini is a boy with a problem: how to keep his friends from knowing that his family is made up of circus stars? Pogo copes by leading two separate lives, until the inevitable Open House at his school. When a fire breaks out during this event, the Poopinis prove their worth by helping Miss Garbonzo and her students escape. Pogo lends his own circus skills to the drama, and learns that being different can also mean being very special.

Few and far between are the children who will reach adulthood without experiencing in some small measure the fear that friends will perceive some aspect of their family life as bizarre. Proud to Be a Poopini, Dave Sindrey's first book, will help children understand that differences can be a source of pride.

Told in the third person, the story flows smoothly throughout. Yet Sindrey's plot devices at times reveal his novice status as an author. Chum McLeod's art work, on the other hand, shows the refinement one would expect from the illustrator of eight children's books. The colours and layout add substantially to the book's appeal. In particular, her depiction of the bearded Aunt Marge fills out this well-developed secondary character.

This imaginative use of a circus theme to explore the age-old issue of self-esteem will find an enthusiastic audience.


Jennifer La Chapelle is the head of a multi-branch public library in Ontario. In addition to an M.L.S., she holds degrees in Political Science, English, and History.

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Copyright © 1995 the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364

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