(Sue Farrell Holler)
Home—Drumheller, Alberta, Canada. E-mail—[email protected]
Writer, public relations consultant, and journalist. Worked variously as a reporter/editor in Hay River, Northwest Territories, Canada; a public affairs officer in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories; and a corporate communications writer in Edmondton, Alberta, Canada.
To the Pool with Mama (for children), illustrated by Robin Baird Lewis, Annick Press (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 2000.
Writer and journalist Sue Farrell is a public relations professional and corporate communications writer based in Alberta, Canada. Farrell is the author of books for children, including two works that portray the small triumphs and gentle adventures during a mother-and-child outing. To the Post Office with Mama follows young Shea as the child accompanies his mother on a snowy walk to mail a letter at the local post office. Farrell and illustrator Robin Baird Lewis depict Shea's playful experiences in the world, emphasizing the child's delight and happiness with small things such as kicking at accumulated snow, listening to the sounds of traffic, and waving at a passing bus. An interlude involving a chasing game further enhances the connection seen between mother and child. In a CM Magazine review, Linda Holeman noted, "The overall feel of this book … is one of trust." In addition, Holeman observed, the closeness exhibited by the mother and child characters "depict a gentle, loving relationship" between parent and offspring.
In her second book describing a child's adventures under mother's careful guidance, Farrell relates the many experiences encountered by John J. and his mother at the local swimming pool. To the Pool with Mama engages all the senses as it highlights John's preparation for his outing, his fascination with his trip, and the many sights and sounds of the pool area itself. "All of the senses are used in describing the visit," commented Helen Arkos in CM Magazine. Farrell notes how the pool area smells like "cleaning," and how the changing room floor feels on John's feet. She relates his visual interest in the layout of the changing lockers, and describes his thoughts as he considers water spiraling down out of sight through the floor drain. When the day's activities are over, John's warm, dry clothes are a comfort, and his mother is there for him. "This simple narrative, told from the perspective of a child, reminds us that spending time doing things we enjoy with someone we love close by is wonderful—no matter how old we are," commented a reviewer in Resource Links.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Resource Links, April, 2000, review of To the Pool with Mama, p. 3.
School Library Journal, May, 2000, Wanda Meyers-Hines, review of To the Pool with Mama, p. 140.
Annick Press Web site,http://www.annickpress.com/ (November 18, 2006), biography of Sue Farrell.
CM Magazine,http://www.umanitoba.ca/cm/, Linda Holeman, review of To the Post Office with Mama; (January 5, 2001), Helen Arkos, review of To the Pool with Mama. *