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BOOK REVIEW

Different Like Coco 
by Elizabeth Matthews
Candlewick 

 

By Donna Maria Chandler

NEW YORK, 7 MAY 2007Different Like Coco is an engaging and thought provoking biography of Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel, noted French haute couture designer, written for children 7 to 11 years of age. Children will enjoy this story about a young girl who is snubbed because she is poor, skinny and was sent to live in an orphanage at age twelve after her mother dies. Coco learns to sew while living in the orphanage and uses her creativity in making rag dolls and ribbons for her hair from scrapes of materials; this lays the foundation for her future career of designing clothes first for herself and then opening her own dress design shop.

In today’s world where children are bombarded with wearing designer’s names and watching videos which prescribe the role of beauty, this book stands out because the life of Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel reminds children that it is alright to be different and you can be successful using your talents and determination. Elizabeth Matthew’s has written an excellent story and her ink and watercolor illustrations demonstrate Coco’s rise from rags to riches.

 

Different Like Coco 
By Elizabeth Matthews (Illustrator)
Hardcover: 40 pages
Candlewick (February 13, 2007)
ISBN-10: 0763625485
ISBN-13: 978-0763625481
$16.99

Donna Maria Chandler is an international educator.  Her work has taken her to Bangladesh, India, South Africa, Egypt and El Salvador. Formerly with the Sesame Workshop, she specializes in children's books and media literacy. She last wrote on Tony Sarg's Up & Down New York for Culturekiosque.com.

 

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