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The Hockey Sweater
by Roch Carrier
ISBN 0887761747 / 9780887761744 / 0-88776-174-7
Publisher Tundra Books
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First published in 1979 in a collection of adult stories and later made into an award-winning animated short film by the National Film Board of Canada, Roch Carrier's The Hockey Sweater is now firmly established as a Canadian classic. Basing the story on his own childhood growing up in St. Justine, Quebec, in the 1940s, Carrier describes the passion that he and his friends had for hockey, and particularly for the exploits of hockey great Maurice "The Rocket" Richard of the Montreal Canadiens. Roch and his friends all have red Canadiens sweaters emblazoned with Richard's famous number 9. When Roch outgrows his sweater, his mother orders him a new one from Eaton's in Montreal. The sweater that arrives two weeks later, though, isn't a Canadiens sweater but the blue-and-white sweater of the Toronto Maple Leafs, which Roch can't imagine wearing under any circumstances. But wear the Leafs sweater he must, with hilarious consequences. Sheldon Cohen's warm, rich illustrations are a perfect match for Carrier's exuberant text. And readers who enjoy The Hockey Sweater should check out Carrier's other sports stories--The Boxing Champion, The Longest Home Run, and The Basketball Player. (Ages 5 to 9) --Jeffrey Canton [via]