Total Pageviews

Saturday, March 25, 2023

I Love My City, written by France Desmarais and illustrated by Yves Dumont. Translation by Richard Adam. Pajama Press, 2023. $16.95 ages 9 and up

"In the Middle Ages, night watchmen made 
rounds of city districts to make sure the 
citizens were safe. Each one would call out 
his own clever cry to remind locals to keep 
a close watch on their candles and fireplaces
so that their homes wouldn't catch fire. Those
watchmen were the very first of what we call 
"first responders" today.

The design is inviting, the information reliable and relevant, the organization top-notch, and the timeline for the life of cities quite a remarkable history. The cities chosen to present are found worldwide, and offer a timeline from the oldest known city to an idea for what the future might hold in terms of urbanization. There are five sections: population, there are all kinds of cities out there, how a city is organized, services, and architecture and culture. The table of contents allows readers to find what intrigues them most and to go straight to that part of the section of interest. 

Some terms will be unfamiliar. To that end, some are marked for explanation in the glossary that is part of the back matter. Others are presented while reading the text. Artwork adds context and further detail. The digital illustrations attract attention, and are placed on double-page spreads throughout. Observant readers will take note of the gray cat that pops up often. There is a lot of information for middle grade readers here, and it is written in such a way as to make it accessible to those who want to know more about urban development. 

It's very interesting to note that research shows more than 70% of the human population will live in an urban area by the year 2050. This will be very useful in classrooms studying urban planning and how cities work, and in all nonfiction collections. 

No comments:

Post a Comment