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Kevin Major in Quebec.

It was not my first time on a reading tour in Quebec. In fact, I was just in the door of Lindsay Place High School in Pointe-Claire when the librarian showed me a picture taken when I presented to a group of students in the same school in 1991. No grey hair, less poundage--it was a distinct revelation of the longevity of authors and author tours in this country. And of the impact they can have--for the teacher remembered details of a conversation I had back in 1991 with a student particularly keen on writing, and how it later contributed to his career direction. To the new group I made a point of reading from one of the same books I would have read from almost 15 years earlier. Books, as we greying-hair tourers believe, can have their longevity, too.

Through the week I presented in 14 different venues, to students from Grade 3 to Grade 12. No matter what the age, I inserted a speed reading of Eh? to Zed. It's my party piece, but one which shows to any age the importance of carefully chosen words, of interesting words, of words that span this fine country of ours. And that, to my mind, is what Book Week is all about--impressing on young people the depth of our literature, taking them on a journey of extraordinary words through "I stopped worrying that older students wouldn't be all that impressed with a demonstration of the endless possibilities for fun in a paper plate, when a pink-haired Grade 5 girl sighed, 'That's way cool.'" the stories of the particular region that has given us root.

Quebec is, in many ways, very much like Newfoundland and Labrador. There is a vibrancy to the culture and a definite pride of place. When, during Book Week, we spanned the physical distance between us with words, I like to think of it as taking quality time to celebrate these similarities.
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Publication:Canadian Children's Book News
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1CQUE
Date:Jan 1, 2006
Words:325
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