You Can Count on Fergie

Description

16 pages
$4.95
ISBN 2-89507-272-8
DDC jC813'.54

Author

Publisher

Year

2002

Contributor

Illustrations by Jirina Marton
Reviewed by Carol L. MacKay

Carol L. MacKay is a children’s librarian living in Bawlf, Alberta.

Review

Fergie the Frog, a character created by Presbyterian minister Nancy
Cocks, is back in eight new adventures. The series, designed to be “a
fun way to instill values and virtues in young children,” places
Fergie in a variety of learning situations. Each story is followed up
with a “parent’s page,” which provides commentary and biblical
reflection on the text, as well as a short prayer based on the theme of
the book.

In Fergie Cleans Up, campers on vacation disrupt the Frog family’s
lives by littering and dumping garbage into their habitat. In the
reflection portion of the book, Cocks discusses the concept of
ecological stewardship in kid-friendly terms, at a level preschoolers
will be able to understand. The other titles in the series deal with a
wide range of topics such as loneliness, cultural diversity,
courage/facing fears, personal uniqueness, friendship, and the
importance of sharing stories with elders in the family.

This Christ-centred collection has no overtly religious references in
the body of each story, until the reader reaches the commentary page.
This approach lessens the didactic overtones of the series, allowing
children to enjoy each action-filled tale. The cover art and inside
illustrations lack eye appeal and may be a difficult sell when lined up
against more vibrant and professionally rendered artwork. Fergie has a
definite place in Christian libraries and, to a lesser extent, in
secular libraries needing to expand their Christian fiction offerings
for children. Recommended with reservations.

Citation

Cocks, Nancy., “You Can Count on Fergie,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 14, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/22312.