Review By CAROLYN M. MULLIN
Two powerhouses team up to bring young readers a sweet and inspiring autobiography of one girl who made her dream a reality. Vegbooks contributors Jennifer and Jessica (not once, but twice!) have fawned over Patrick McDonnell’s work, but now they and you too can appreciate his artistic style and prose in a different light. None of the mutts that made McDonnell famous can be found here, but several of the protagonist’s own drawings and puzzles make a debut.
In Me…Jane, McDonnell records the curious making of a young naturalist: bonding with a stuffed animal friend, watching birds make a nest and spiders spin a web, absorbing information about flora and fauna like a sponge, climbing trees, learning how eggs are made firsthand, and dreaming of a life helping animals in Africa.
The cartoon-illustrated and simply written text leads up to a fully colored photograph of famed primatologist, animal advocate and UN Messenger of Peace, Dr. Jane Goodall, reaching out her hand to meet that of a baby chimpanzee, a tell tale image that her dream came true. Me…Jane is an touching biography because every reader can identify with Jane’s nature explorations of her youth and come to believe that they too can realize their ambitions.