The OWL Fun Book
Sheila Martindale is poetry editor of Canadian Author and Bookman and
author of No Greater Love, her sixth collection of poetry.
For anyone with children who have “nothing to do” during the long summer holiday, this would be a good investment. The book is filled with ideas: for keeping cool when it’s hot, for keeping occupied when it rains, and so on. There is a good article on bicycle maintenance, several interesting pieces about insects, and instructions on how to make various functional objects, such as miniature sail boats and paper planes. The simple experiments are well explained (and also work, according to one youngster I asked). There are cross-word puzzles and other word games, and an exciting food section featuring fun snacks which are also nutritious.
I would have liked to see more stories; but the ones presented, including one by the well-known children’s writer Monica Hughes, are well written. (In comparison, Potlatch Publication’s Children’s Annual usually has much more fiction and some poetry, and fewer “things to do.”) The visual presentation is good — eye-catching illustrations or zany drawings accompanying each piece, some excellent photographs, and good quality paper. For my taste some pages are a little too “packed,” but then I am not in the 8-12 age group.
Those familiar with OWL Magazine will recognise a lot of things here; those new to it will find much to enjoy.