Submitter: The non-fiction section of our school library in Quebec hasn’t been weeded since…well, ever, so now that we’re undertaking it there have been good pickings. We came across this book in the Canadian history section. It was allegedly about pioneer settlement of the Canadian frontier, but apparently the Canadian frontier was settled by creepy dolls. The one in the middle with blonde hair and blue eyes is a whole new level of terrifying.
Despite its 1968 publication date, this book actually contains a lot of information that could still be useful, but nobody has checked it out since the 70s. Maybe the nightmare-inducing cover had something to do with it?
Holly: There is something about old dolls, isn’t there? This is an odd cover for the book. Either someone was trying to be clever by representing pioneers with dolls from the era, or they are actual dolls brought by actual pioneers and it is somehow relevant to the book’s content. Old photos of actual pioneers would have been better, or maybe a daily-life artifact of the time that doesn’t stare at you with disapproving glass eyes.Verdict: I’d keep the book (unless the same info is available in a book that people seem to like better, since this one hasn’t been checked out in 40 years) but it is a strange cover.
Country books are a pet peeve of mine. Canada, in particular, has been suffering the indignity of having some seriously outdated materials stuck in Michigan libraries. (You know who you are.) We should be showing some respect. After all, they are our neighbors. I can already hear the judgmental sighs from my Canadian friends all the way to Ottawa.
Go weed the country books. Do it for Canada.
For all you library nerds, I urge you to check out the Haskell Free Library and Opera House in Derby Line, VT and Stanstead, QC. This public library that has the unique distinction of having the US-Canadian border running right through the library’s reading room.
The First Book of Eskimos
Yikes! I don’t really know where to begin. Here we have two ancient books on Eskimos. Both of these titles are older than me! Little Eskimos bugs me as I didn’t think they were necessarily “small.” The second book (pictured below) made me cringe when I saw the spine label. Sometimes there are just no words. Any of the kids in my library would think I was out of my mind if I gave them either of these books.
Native peoples of Alaska and Canada and other arctic regions are not one homogeneous group. I believe that in Canada, Yupik and Inuit are more appropriate descriptions, and Eskimo is considered a pejorative. While Alaska has distinct groups, they are generally okay with the name Eskimo. ALB readers from these regions, please correct me!
By the way, neither book has been weeded as of this writing and both are in a children’s collection. (sigh)