A Giant Named Azalea


32 pages
ISBN 0-920813-68-2
DDC jC813'.54




Illustrations by Kyo Maclear
Reviewed by Jean Free

Jean Free, a library consultant, is a retired public-school teacher and
librarian in Whitby, Ontario.


Azalea is a giant who lives inside Shanti, a young girl whose family has
come from India. Shanti enjoys playing with her friend Jackie and they
visit each other’s houses. But when Shanti has an unhappy day at
school, Azalea comes out to explain why Jackie’s mother will not let
the girls play together. Later Shanti and Jackie sing a song together at
a concert, which their parents enjoy.

This is a trite and obvious story about believing in “the giant
inside of you,” who can give you the power to overcome difficulties.
It is awkwardly written, and the accompanying black-and-white
illustrations have nothing to recommend them. Though there is a real
dearth of Canadian picture books about Indian cultures, this title has
little to recommend it.


Srivastava, Vinita., “A Giant Named Azalea,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed April 16, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/24425.