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Imagining Ontario
Picture Book
Pages: 32
Themes: Ontario, history, natural history, industry, culture, First Nations, Indigenous
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date: 01/10/2010
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Combining evocative haiku, informative text and luminous illustrations, Great Lakes and Rugged Ground is a celebration, for our youngest readers, of more than four hundred years of Ontario's history. Each detail-rich illustration depicts a particular moment in the province's dynamic saga from first European contact, the War of 1812, the building of the railroad and the Rideau Canal, the early development of the industries that have made the province the backbone of the national economy, through the emergence of a unique Canadian cultural identity, the hardships of two World Wars and modern industrial development. Great Lakes and Rugged Ground will give young readers a vivid sense of Ontario's rich history.

Tacoma School District #10 - August 8, 2012
"With haiku poetry, this book covers over 400 years of history about Ontario, Canada. It also provides historical notes and a seek and find list for readers. Simple, colorful illustrations add to the appeal."
Canadian Literature - July 1, 2012
"The short poems open up the scenes before us, each one of which is rich in interesting details. Great Lakes and Rugged Ground is a book designed to be pored over and talked about. Very young children will be captivated by the colour and movement of the pictures; older ones will have questions about the historical significance of the people, places, vessels, and machines they portray."
BookLinx - January 30, 2012
"The most stunning thing upon opening this book is the artwork. Each amazing spread shows a colorful, well-detailed, fascinating slice of history...Truly a beautiful book."
Resource Links - December 1, 2010
"Sarah N. Harvey and Leslie Buffam have created fourteen exquisite Haiku poems that provide snapshots of moments in the history of Ontario. Each vignette is accompanied by double spread watercolour illustrations that visually captur[e] the essence of the poem. Kasia Charko's detailed colourful pictures expand the story the brief poems describe. Together the illustrations and text create an intriguing glimpse into moments of the past...The book lends itself well as a pedagogic tool as well as a book that can simply be enjoyed for its visual and poetic merit...I highly recommend Great Lakes and Rugged Ground: Imagining Ontario as a purchase for school and public libraries."
Quill & Quire - November 1, 2010
"[It's] hard not to be charmed...The watercolour and colour pencil illustrations by Kasia Charko are stunning. The pictures are evocative and detailed, but also accessible and child-friendly...[and] the haikus themselves, by author/editor Sarah N. Harvey and historian/bookseller Leslie Buffam, are surprising in their intricacy."
CM Magazine - September 24, 2010
"Equally as compelling as the historical moment that is depicted by [Charko's] artwork are the details of the plants and animals and the natural features of each of the different and distinct areas in Ontario…In addition to the young readers who will enjoy this introduction to Ontario, this book is also a good example for older students of how to combine art and poetry to present information on a particular topic. Recommended."


Resource Links "The Year's Best"  | 2010 | Commended
Chocolate Lily nominee  | 2012 | Short-listed

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