Matas, Carol 1949–
Matas, Carol 1949–
MATAS, Carol 1949–
PERSONAL: Born November 14, 1949, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada; daughter of Roy Joseph (a judge) and Ruth Gloria Matas; married Per K. Brask (a professor of theater), February 19, 1977; children: Rebecca Ellen, Aaron Samuel. Education: University of Western Ontario, B.A., 1969; graduate, Actor's Lab, London, England, 1972. Religion: Jewish.
ADDRESSES: Home—424 Bowes Blvd., Winnipeg, Manitoba R3P 0L5, Canada. Office—c/o Writers' Union of Canada, 24 Ryerson Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M5T 929, Canada. E-mail—[email protected]
CAREER: Writer. Continuing Education Division, University of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, instructor of creative writing; Manitoba Arts Council, Artists in the Schools; Bemidji State University, Minnesota, visiting professor; Centennial Library, Winnipeg, writer-in-residence.
MEMBER: International PEN, Writers' Union of Canada, Manitoba Writers Guild, Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Writers Guild of Canada.
AWARDS, HONORS: Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young Readers, 1988, Sydney Taylor Honor Book, Association of Jewish Libraries (AJL), Notable Book, New York Times Book Review, both 1989, Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, National Council for the Social Studies and Children's Book Council (NCSS/CBC), 1990, Young Adults' Choices, International Reading Association, 1991, and Canadian Children's Book Centre "Our Choice" Memorable Book for Young People, all for Lisa's War (originally published as Lisa); Mr. Christie's Honour Book, Christie Brown & Co., Honor List, Canadian Materials, both 1989, "Our Choice," Canadian Children's Book Centre, runner-up, Young Adult Canadian Book Awards, both 1990, Woodward Park Award and Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, NCSS/CBC, both 1991, all for Code Name Kris (originally published as Jesper); Notable Book, Canadian Library Association (CLA), 1992, for The Race; nominee, Governor General's Literary Award, Silver Birch Award, nominee, Ruth Schwartz Award, Mr. Christie's Honour Book, all 1993, Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, NCSS/CBC, Books for the Teen Age selection, New York Public Library, both 1994, and Manitoba Young Reader's Choice Award, 1996, all for Daniel's Story; Sydney Taylor Award, AJL, Notable Book, CLA, both 1993, Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, NCSS/CBC, Books for the Teen Age, New York Public Library, both 1994, all for Sworn Enemies; "Our Choice" Award, Canadian Children's Book Centre, 1993, nominee, Governor General's Literary Award, Quick Picks for Young Readers, American Library Association, and Books for the Teen Age, New York Public Library, all 1994, all for The Burning Time; nominee, Manitoba Book of the Year, 1995, and Outstanding Book of the Year, Canadian Children's Book Centre, 1995, both for The Primrose Path; Best Books, School Library Journal, 1995, and Books in the Middle: Outstanding Books of 1995, Voice of Youth Advocates, 1996, both for Of Two Minds (with Perry Nodelman); Editors' Choice, Booklist, Best Books for Young Adults, American Library Association, Jewish Book Award, Mr. Christie Honour Book, Junior Library Guild selection, all 1996, Books for the Teen Age, New York Public Library, Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, NCSS/CBC, and Books in the Middle: Outstanding Books of 1996, Voice of Youth Advocates, all 1997, and Ontario Library Association Red Maple Readers Choice Award, 1998, all for After the War; Moose Jaw Young Reader's Choice Award, 1998, for The Burning Time; notable book citation, NCSS/CBC, 1998, Books for the Teen Age, New York Public Library, Jewish Book Award, all 1998, all for The Garden; notable book award, NCSS/CBC, 1999, for Greater than Angels; Books for the Teen Age, New York Public Library, Bilson Honour Book designation, and Children's Book Centre Choice, 2000, for In My Enemy's House; Books for the Teen Age, New York Public Library, Sydney Taylor Honor Book, AJL, Bilson Honour Book designation, all 2001, and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award, 2002, all for The War Within.
The D.N.A. Dimension, Gage Publishing (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 1982.
The Fusion Factor, Fifth House (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada), 1986, published as It's Up to Us, Stoddard (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 1991.
Zanu, Fifth House (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada), 1986.
Me, Myself and I, Fifth House (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada), 1987.
Lisa, Lester & Orpen Dennys (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 1987, published as Lisa's War, Scribner (New York, NY), 1989, republished as Lisa, Scholastic (New York, NY), 2005, adapted as a play by the author with husband, Per Brask, and produced by Prairie Theater Exchange, 1991, Geordie Productions, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, 1994.
Jesper, Lester & Orpen Dennys (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 1989, published as Code Name Kris, Scribner (New York, NY), 1990.
Adventure in Legoland, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1991.
The Race, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1991.
Sworn Enemies, Bantam (New York, NY), 1993, adapted as a drama and read at Jewish Repertory Theater, New York, NY, 1994.
Safari Adventure in Legoland, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1993.
Daniel's Story, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1993.
The Escape (play), commissioned for and produced at the Winnipeg Jewish Theater, April, 1993.
The Lost Locket, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1994.
The Burning Time, Bantam (New York, NY), 1994.
(With Perry Nodelman) Of Two Minds, Bain & Cox (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada), 1994, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1995.
The Primrose Path, Bain & Cox (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada), 1995.
After the War, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1996.
(With Perry Nodelman) More Minds, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1996.
The Freak, Key Porter (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 1997.
The Garden, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1997.
Greater than Angels, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1998.
Telling, Key Porter (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 1998, adapted for radio, CBC Manitoba, October, 1994.
(With Perry Nodelman) Out of Their Minds, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1998.
In My Enemy's House, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1999.
Cloning Miranda, Scholastic Canada (Markham, Ontario, Canada), 1999.
(With Perry Nodelman) A Meeting of Minds, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1999.
Rebecca, Scholastic Canada (Markham, Ontario, Canada), 2000.
The Second Clone, Scholastic Canada (Markham, Ontario, Canada), 2001.
Dear Canada, Scholastic Canada (Markham, Ontario, Canada), 2001.
The War Within: A Novel of the Civil War, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 2001.
Sparks Fly Upward, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 2002.
Footsteps in the Snow, Scholastic Canada (Markham, Ontario, Canada), 2002.
Ben, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 2002.
Rosie in New York City: Gotcha!, Aladdin Paperbacks (New York, NY), 2003.
Rosie in Chicago: Play Ball!, Aladdin Paperbacks (New York, NY), 2003.
Rosie in Los Angeles: Action!, Aladdin Paperbacks (New York, NY), 2004.
Several of Matas's novels have been translated into Danish, French, Swedish, and Spanish. Matas and her husband, Per Brask, adapted her novel Jesper as a play.
ADAPTATIONS: Sworn Enemies, Lisa's War, Daniel's Story, and The DNA Dimension have all been recorded as audio books.
SIDELIGHTS: Carol Matas's fiction for young readers is marked by her hard-hitting storylines, often featuring adolescents in life-or-death situations. At the same time, her stories convey the everyday sense of life, even when her protagonists are caught up in major historical events. Her stories are frequently set during World War II and the Holocaust; her award-winning novels Lisa's War, Code Name Kris, Daniel's Story and After the War are among those that highlight tales of heroism and despair during that conflict. In these starkly realistic adventure tales, Matas seeks to entertain readers and also to provoke them into seeing the world anew. Other books explore the consequences of unchecked pollution, as in Zanu; time travel in Me, Myself and I; nuclear war in The Fusion Factor; and themes of religion, ideology, and authority in Burning Time, Sworn Enemies, and The Primrose Path. Matas always thrusts her youthful protagonists into the thick of things, having them deal with large events rather than adolescent concerns such as getting a date or doing well in a sports competition. "For me," Matas related in an interview with Perry Nodelman, published in Canadian Children's Literature, "the greatest pleasure is to read a book that is compelling and substantive…. But I'm not trying to preach a message—quite the opposite. I'm trying to open a question, a dialogue, give my reader food for thought."
Matas further commented on her approach: "My first goal in writing is to tell a good story. I had such pleasure from the experience of reading when I was a child that if I could give that experience to the young people reading my books that would be enough. (In Hebrew there is a word, Dayenu, which means 'it would have been enough.') But I'm afraid my ambitions don't stop there. I also want to challenge my readers and make them think. I suppose that is why I love to write for young people, whose minds are still open, who have not yet decided everything yet. And finally, I like to write about topics that have not been written about before because I think that makes the reading experience even more exciting for the reader."
As a young person, Matas had no intention of pursuing a writing career. Instead, she had ambitions to work in theater. She trained at the Actor's Lab in London, England, and then returned to her native Winnipeg, Canada, to pursue a career in drama. Writing began gradually, but when she had to set acting aside because of her pregnancy, she finished her first full-length book. The novel, a fantasy, was never published; still, she kept at her new pursuit even after her daughter was born, writing with a juvenile audience in mind. "As I progressed in my writing I settled into children's writing because I felt that it was an area in which I could make a difference," Matas reported in Canadian Children's Literature.
Matas's first publication came after her second manuscript had been rejected numerous times. In fact, by the time The Fusion Factor was published, Matas had already written and placed another title, The D. N. A. Dimension. By the mid-1980s, she had a quartet of books published—including Zanu and Me, Myself and I—all with the same twelve-year-old protagonist, Rebecca, named after her daughter. These early books employ a science fiction format in which time travel figures heavily in stories of nuclear destruction, genetic engineering, and eco-catastrophe. In The Fusion Factor, Rebecca time-travels in the future to an underground city populated by genetically impaired survivors of a nuclear holocaust who are kidnapping healthy children from the past for breeding purposes. In Zanu, she is transported to a seemingly perfect future world, only to discover the rot beneath the surface. Zanu is a corporate world, completely controlled by big business; those who do not conform are banished to a wilderness destroyed by industrial pollution. In both of these books, the future appears bleak, and Rebecca's only salvation is a return to her own time where she resolves to do something about the problems she has encountered. She helps to form a resistance group to the totalitarian regime on Zanu before leaving, and leads a peace group after her return to the present in The Fusion Factor. Sandra Odegard, reviewing both books in Canadian Children's Literature, commented: "Matas suggests that challenging the established power structure of any society calls upon physical, as well as moral, courage." Mary Ainslie Smith, in Books in Canada, offered a similar estimation of The Fusion Factor and Zanu, asserting: "Rebecca, spunky and ultimately optimistic, wants to believe that one person can make … a difference. Her determination to work for a better world should get some healthy ideas stirring in the minds of the readers of these two books."
Matas's first publication in the United States was her novel about the Danish resistance, Lisa's War (originally published as Lisa). Initially, the author's interest was piqued by stories about her husband's father and grandfather, who participated in the Danish underground during the war. When a friend gave her a book about how the Danish people managed to save most of the Jews of their country, she recognized another angle for her story. In the book, Lisa is a Jewish teenager growing up in Copenhagen during the Nazi occupation. At the age of twelve, Lisa becomes involved in the resistance movement, and her exploits range from distributing leaflets to blowing up bridges, all to help the Jews avoid capture by Nazis. As time goes by, Lisa worries that the resistance workers are becoming almost as violent and uncompromising as the Nazis they are fighting. In a critical moment, she is herself forced to kill a Nazi soldier in order to save many innocent lives. "There are many violent acts in Lisa," noted Welwyn Wilton Katz in Books in Canada, "but the book is made less dark by the characters' desire to move beyond them." In a Voice of Youth Advocates review, Marian Rafal concluded that "This great escape to Sweden by over six thousand Jews is a gripping tale of adventure and courage." J. R. Wytenbroek, reviewing the book in Canadian Literature, commented that it "combines personal emotion with historical fact in just the right proportions to produce a first hand look into what it must have been like to be a Jew in occupied Europe during those dark years…. This positive book, with enough facts about Jewish life and ceremonies to give non-Jews an understanding about the Jewish culture, has something worthwhile to say, while also being thoroughly entertaining." The book is not simply an adventure story with war as a backdrop, noted Mary M. Burns in Horn Book, but rather "an account of events that irrevocably changed the lives of human beings." A Publishers Weekly contributor summarized that Lisa's War is "an unsettling, important novel."
The sequel to Lisa's War, Code Name Kris, tells the part of the Danish resistance story that had originally captured Matas's attention. Published under the title Jesper in Canada, the book narrates the adventures of that title character, an adolescent friend of Lisa and her older brother, as he battles the Nazis after Lisa and her family have escaped to neutral Sweden. Captured and held as a member of the resistance, Jesper chronicles the events leading up to his arrest as he awaits execution. Though he had started out by needling the Nazis with minor pranks, he is quickly forced to grow up and grow old in the ways of the world. Life's uncertainties are brought home to him when he discovers that a man he formerly idolized has turned traitor and joined the Nazis. In his jail cell, Jesper muses: "Ever since the Germans took over, that has been at the forefront of our lives—uncertainty. Nothing is sure. Nothing is safe. Is your neighbor a friend or an enemy?" Writing in Quill and Quire, Frieda Wishinsky noted that Matas "has seamlessly woven in actual events and places in Copenhagen to describe a time when young people grew up quickly in a world ripped apart by war." A Five Owls reviewer noted that the narrative of this sequel "moves quickly and is full of action," while Graham Caie in Canadian Children's Literature commented that the book is "a really good teenage novel," adding that Matas's careful research and thorough detail "give this historical novel greater credibility and depth."
Matas further explored the horrors of war and of the Holocaust in Daniel's Story and After the War. The former was commissioned by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and in part formed a complement to their exhibit about children in the Holocaust. Told from the point of view of a survivor in flashback, the story details the life of one young boy from the age of six to eighteen. Daniel and his family are deported from Frankfurt and a happy childhood to the Lodz ghetto and subsequently to the death camp of Auschwitz, then to Bergen-Belsen and Buchenwald. Finally, in 1945, he is liberated, while most of those around him have died. Some reviewers, including Betsy Hearne in Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, felt that Daniel's Story did not involve the reader as much as Matas's other novels had. Hearne noted that "the novel never seems to take on a fictional life of its own but remains almost a descriptive explanation of Jewish suffering at the hands of the Nazis." Others found the book dramatic and engrossing. Kenneth Oppel, writing in Quill and Quire, acknowledged that "Daniel, apparently a composite of real children who endured the Holocaust, does assume allegorical status in the novel, but the human voice of a child is always there." Canadian Materials contributor Anne Louise Mahoney maintained: "Daniel is a likeable character, strong and committed to seeing truth and justice win out in the end." Oppel concluded that "Daniel's Story is never less than gripping. It is a book all children should read."
Matas extended the story of war and its horrors in the novel After the War, which chronicles the adventures of a fifteen-year-old survivor of the camps, Ruth Mendleberg. Ruth joins a Zionist group and tries to reach a new homeland in Palestine. Although it seems she has lost everything meaningful in her life, Ruth must still find a way to go on and find something to live for. Interwoven with the present action of a perilous journey across the European continent by a group of child survivors are flashbacks of Ruth's war-time life—the roundups and massacres, scenes she wishes to forget. In School Library Journal, Robyn Nicoline Ryan called After the War "a thought-provoking novel that offers great insight into the current problems in the Middle East." Betsy Hearne of the Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books commented that "Matas' recreation of life on the run acquires some authentic urgency," and a Booklist reviewer noted that Matas "has retold [historical incidents] and shaped them into a tightly edited drama." The author continued the story of the survivors in Palestine as they fought against the Arab nations surrounding them in The Garden. In her Canadian Children's Literature interview, Matas commented on her repeated use of World War II in her fiction: "I suppose this time offers an incredible wealth of dramatic stories as well as an opportunity to explore issues and to put my characters in life or death situations where moral dilemmas have to be faced."
In addition to her notable works about World War II, Matas has written about other historical periods, and also set some of her books in contemporary times. The Lost Locket has eight-year-old Roz searching for a stolen family heirloom in a "delightful and suspenseful book," according to J. R. Wytenbroek in Canadian Literature. The Race uses Canadian politics as a backdrop to the coming-of-age story of Ali Green, a fourteen-year-old youth delegate at a Liberal leadership convention, and the daughter of the front-running candidate. "Ali is a truly likable character," noted Quill & Quire contributor Anne Louise Mahoney, adding: "Her first-person narrative is full of humour and teenage angst, and brings a fresh perspective to politics and life in general." In another favorable review of The Race, Canadian Materials contributor Gordon Heasley described the book as "an engaging young adult narrative that artfully combines the stories of a questioning adolescent and the elaborate political process of a leadership race."
Collaborating with Perry Nodelman, Matas has also written several fantasy novels, including Of Two Minds and More Minds, about the Kingdom of Gepeth and the Princess Lenora, who possesses extraordinary mental powers. In a review of the former, Pat Barclay, in Books in Canada, described Of Two Minds as "an allegory about democracy vs. dictatorship and what happens when a people gives too much power to its leader."
In The Burning Time, Matas moved to sixteenth-century France, at a time when witch trials were prevalent. Fifteen-year-old Rose is horrified when her mother, a healer and midwife, is accused of being a witch by jealous neighbors and spurned suitors. Soon Rose is also accused, and she must flee to save herself. Although Hazel Rochman, writing in Booklist, felt that "the political message overwhelms the novel," she concluded that "It's the history that's compelling here, the facts that are left out of the traditional textbooks, the role played by those strong women outsiders who threatened the male hierarchy." A reviewer for Voice of Youth Advocates commented that "This gripping story of survival with its aspects of horror and witches will make it much more popular than most other young adult historical fiction."
Sworn Enemies deals with the kidnapping and forced conversion of Jewish youths for the Czarist army in nineteenth-century Russia. Sixteen-year-old Aaron is betrayed by a fellow Jew, Zev, and is forced into the Czar's army. Ironically, Zev is also caught later, and the two must again confront one another in their efforts to escape. A Kirkus Reviews critic called Sworn Enemies a "harrowing, thought-provoking, skillfully written novel about a past whose vile legacy persists." Concluding his review of the book in New York Times Book Review, Roger Sutton asserted: "Ms. Matas is a good storyteller, and her novel will tell young readers about a less than familiar aspect of Jewish history." Sutton also noted Matas's facility with the format of historical fiction, commenting: "Ms. Matas makes the time-travel jump easily enough, and if the questions she poses sometimes seem equally easy, then she may help her readers to ask the same questions in their own lives."
The Primrose Path is a complex story set in modern times, in which the author takes on the subject of sexual molestation. When Debbie Mazur's family moves cross-country following her grandmother's death, Debbie's mother takes solace in a strict Orthodox synagogue with a charismatic rabbi. Debbie, accustomed to Reform ways, is uncomfortable with the new synagogue, but things take an upturn when she is befriended by some other teenaged girls who have a close relationship with Rabbi Werner, who is also their Hebrew teacher and school principal. Debbie discovers that the rabbi's attention to the girls—including herself—include inappropriate touching, always made to seem accidental. J. R. Wytenbrock in Quill and Quire noted, "Debbie's confusion and sense of betrayal are horribly real. Matas handles a delicate subject in a very sensitive manner. Moreover, she does not oversimplify the problem…. The social and personal ramifications of exposing abuse are treated wisely but honestly."
Matas moved toward fantasy with her novel The Freak. The central character, Jade, survives a bout of meningitis and finds that in its wake, she has acquired psychic powers. Her supernatural awareness of thoughts and energies alerts her to oncoming anti-Semitic violence in her community, and she uses her abilities to try to track down and stop the would-be perpetrators. Sarah Ellis, a contributor to Quill & Quire, found that despite some weaknesses, The Freak "is fresh, even groundbreaking. Matas chooses to see Jade's dilemma as not just psychological or even ethical, but as having a spiritual and religious dimension."
Her own family's heritage was the foundation for Matas's Sparks Fly Upward, a tale of a young Jewish immigrant in Canada during the early twentieth century. Rebecca, the narrator, is happy in her small Yiddish farming community, but her life changes drastically when a fire forces the family to move to Winnipeg. There, she makes friends with a Christian Ukrainian girl, but religious tension between their families leads to violence. Booklist reviewer Hazel Rochman described as "compelling" the way in which the author portrayed "Rebecca's personal struggle with faith, friendship and loyalty." School Library Journal reviewer Kathleen Isaacs also recommended the book as a "satisfying friendship story" that dramatizes "the complexity of different approaches to Judaism."
The plight of Jews in the Civil War is portrayed in The War Within: A Novel of the Civil War. The protagonist, Hannah Green, finds her life uprooted when her Mississippi town is occupied by Union soldiers who order all Jews to evacuate. Forced to examine her own beliefs about slavery, freedom, and equality, Hannah tries to sort out her confusion by keeping a journal as the family heads north, in exile. Resource Links reviewer Ingrid Johnston noted a "didactic" quality to the book, but praised it for its "fascinating insight" into a little-known slice of history, and noted Matas's skill in bringing Hannah and her world to life. The novel's "decidedly different slant" and its "riptide of action and the appealing cast of strong, vivid characters" also won approval from Carolyn Phelan in Booklist.
Matas collaborated with Perry Nodelman to create a series of books about a princess who can materialize anything she imagines and a prince who can read minds. In Of Two Minds, the first in the series, the pair are about to be married when they are unexpectedly transported into a world peopled by invisible races of beings, ruled by a kindly dictator. The sprightly story serves as an allegory for the opposition between democracy and dictatorship, and it "grabs the reader's attention and never lets it go," according to Joanne Findon in Quill & Quire. Lisa Denis, a contributor to School Library Journal, found the "sophisticated vocabulary and challenging concepts" noteworthy, and credited the coauthors with doing "a heroic job of melding their two voices to create a kaleidoscope of character, cultures, and events that offers both entertainment and enrichment to young readers."
Whatever the setting or plot, at the heart of all Matas's fiction is the act of questioning the world. As she stated in her interview for Canadian Children's Literature, "the world is a complex place and … what I'm trying to do is present this world, in all its complexities, to my readers. And hope they are both challenged and entertained."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Canadian Children's Books, Oxford University Press (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 2000.
Helbig, Alethea K., and Agnes Regan Perkins, Dictionary of Children's Fiction from Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand, and Selected African Countries, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 1992.
Matas, Carol, Code Name Kris, Scribner (New York, NY), 1990.
St. James Guide to Young Adult Writers, 2nd edition, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 1999.
Booklist, April 1, 1989, Denise Wilms, review of Lisa's War, p. 1387; February 1, 1993, Ilene Cooper, review of Sworn Enemies, p. 977; May 15, 1993, Kay Weisman, review of Daniel's Story, p. 1688; September 1, 1994, p. 35; April 1, 1996, Hazel Rochman, review of After the War, p. 1361; April 1, 1997, Hazel Rochman, review of The Garden, p. 1322; April 15, 1998, Hazel Rochman, review of Greater than Angels, p. 1436; February 1, 1999, Hazel Rochman, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 969; December 1, 1999, Anne O'Malley, review of A Meeting of Minds, p. 696; April 1, 2001, Carolyn Phelan, review of The War Within: A Novel of the Civil War, p. 1484; April 1, 2002, Hazel Rochman, review of Sparks Fly Upward, p. 1328, review of Sparks Fly Upward, p. 1484.
Book Report, January, 1999, review of Greater than Angels, p. 63; March, 1999, review of Out of Their Minds, p. 60.
Books for Young People, December, 1987, Kenneth Oppel, review of Lisa, p. 6; February, 1988, Adele Ashby, review of Me, Myself and I, p. 10.
Books in Canada, March, 1987, Mary Ainslie Smith, review of The Fusion Factor, pp. 37-39; April, 1988, Welwyn Wilton Katz, review of Lisa, p. 36; October, 1993, Pat Barclay, review of Daniel's Story, pp. 57-58; December, 1994, p. 57; October, 1996, Olga Stein, review of The Primrose Path, p. 30; July, 2001, review of The War Within, p. 31.
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, September, 1989, pp. 12-13; January, 1991, pp. 124-125; April, 1993, Betsy Hearne, review of Sworn Enemies, p. 258; May, 1993, Betsy Hearne, review of Daniel's Story, p. 289; December, 1994, Pat Barclay, review of Books in Canada, p. 57, Betsy Hearne, review of The Burning Time, p. 139; April, 1996, Betsy Hearne, review of After the War, pp. 271-272; February, 1997, Amy E. Brandt, review of More Minds, p. 214; May, 1997, pp. 330-331; July, 1998, review of Greater than Angels, p. 404; March, 1999, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 248; May, 2001, review of The War Within, p. 346.
Canadian Book Review Annual, 1998, reviews of Telling and Greater than Angels, p. 514, review of More Minds, p. 515; 1999, review of In My Enemy's House and Cloning Miranda, p. 506; 2000, review of Rebecca, p. 492.
Canadian Children's Literature, number 50, 1988, Sandra Odegard, review of Zanu, The Fusion Factor, and Lisa, pp. 79-80; number 59, 1990, Graham Caie, review of Jesper, pp. 85-86; spring, 1994, Marie Campbell, review of The Race, p. 79; fall, 1994, J. R. Wytenbroek, review of Sworn Enemies, pp. 70-71; number 82, 1996, Perry Nodelman, interview with Carol Matas, pp. 57-68; summer, 1997, Dinah Gough, review of The Lost Locket, p 57, Lynne McKechnie, review of Of Two Minds, p. 82; fall, 1999, review of Greater than Angels, p. 167, review of The Garden, p. 176, review of Daniel's Story, p. 182, review of The Freak, p. 185; summer, 2000, review of More Minds, p. 91.
Canadian Literature, spring, 1988, David W. Atkinson, review of The Fusion Factor, pp. 143-145; summer, 1988, review of Zanu, pp. 158-160; spring, 1996, p. 108.
Canadian Materials, July, 1988, Nadiya Blaine, review of Me, Myself and I, p. 130; May, 1990, P. J. Hammel, review of Jesper, p. 129; May, 1992, Gordon Heasley, review of The Race, p. 168; September, 1992, Lorrie Ann Clark, review of Adventure in Legoland, p. 204; September, 1993, p. 153; May-June, 1994, Jennifer Johnson, review of Safari Adventure in Legoland, p. 76.
Children's Book News, spring, 1998, review of Telling, p. 28.
Five Owls, July-August, 1989, Freda Kleinburd, review of Lisa's War, p. 93; January-February, 1991, p. 61.
Horn Book, May-June, 1989, Mary M. Burns, review of Lisa's War, pp. 377-378; January-February, 1991, Ellen Fader, review of Code Name Kris, pp. 74-75; May-June, 1998, Susan P. Bloom, review of Greater than Angels, p. 347; fall, 2001, review of The War Within, p. 324.
Horn Book Guide, fall, 1998, review of Greater than Angels, p. 345; spring, 1999, review of Out of Their Minds, p. 71; fall, 1999, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 305.
Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 1990, review of Code Name Kris, p. 1458; January 1, 1993, p. 66; November 15, 1994, review of The Burning Time, p. 1538; September 15, 1995, review of Of Two Minds, p. 1354; April 15, 2001, review of The War Within, p. 589.
Kliatt, January, 1998, review of After the War, p. 10; July, 1998, Claire Rosser, review of Greater than Angels, p. 52; September, 1998, review of More Minds and Of Two Minds, p. 28; March, 1999, review of The Garden, p. 12.
Los Angeles Times Book Review, June 4, 1989, p. 13.
Maclean's, November 22, 1999, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 104.
New Advocate, winter, 2001, reviews of In My Enemy's House and Greater than Angels, p. 52.
New York Times Book Review, May 21, 1989, Edith Milton, review of Lisa's War, p. 32; April 11, 1993, p. 30; September 5, 1993, p. 17.
Publishers Weekly, February 10, 1989, review of Lisa's War, p. 73; October 17, 1994, review of The Burning Time, p. 82; April 27, 1998, review of Greater than Angels, p. 68; July 6, 1998, review of More Minds, p. 63; November 29, 1999, review of Greater than Angels, p. 73.
Quill & Quire, October, 1989, p. 14; October, 1991, Anne Louise Mahoney, review of The Race, p. 35; February, 1993, Kenneth Oppel, review of Daniel's Story, p. 35; October, 1993, Fred Boer, review of Safari Adventure in Legoland, p. 43; February, 1994, Marie Campbell, review of The Lost Locket, p. 39; December, 1994, Joanne Findon, review of Of Two Minds, p. 33; February, 1995, Marie Campbell, review of The Burning Time, p. 37; November, 1995, J. R. Wytenbroek, review of The Primrose Path, p. 45; October, 1996, Teresa Toten, review of After the War, p. 49; March, 1997, Sarah Ellis, review of The Freak, p. 79; September, 1997, Gwyneth Evans, review of The Garden, p. 75; June, 1998, review of Telling, p. 60; August, 1998, review of Greater than Angels, p. 37; December, 1998, review of More Minds, p. 39; March, 1999, review of Cloning Miranda, p. 70; September, 1999, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 70; June, 2001, review of The War Within, p. 50.
Reading Teacher, April, 1998, review of Daniel's Story, p. 603.
Resource Links, April, 1996, review of The Primrose Path, p. 177; October, 1997, review of The Freak, p. 36; December, 1997, review of The Garden, pp. 87-88; June, 1998, review of The Garden, p. 19; December, 1998, review of Telling, p. 20; February, 1999, review of Out of Their Minds, p. 26; October, 1999, review of Cloning Miranda, p. 29; December, 1999, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 28; February, 2001, review of Rebecca, p. 15; June, 2001, Crystal Faris, review of The War Within, p. 152; October, 2001, Ingrid Johnston, review of The War Within, p. 41; February, 2002, Rosemary Anderson, review of The Second Clone, p. 14; June, 2005, Susan Miller, review of Lisa, p. 34; June, 2005, Anne Hatcher, review of Rosie in Los Angeles: Action!, p. 34.
School Library Journal, May, 1989, Susan M. Harding, review of Lisa's War, p. 127; December, 1990, David A. Londsey, review of Code Name Kris, pp. 121-122; May, 1993, p. 107; October, 1995, Lisa Denis, review of Of Two Minds, p. 136; December, 1995, p. 22; May, 1996, Robyn Nicoline Ryan, review of After the War, p. 135; October, 1996, Lisa Dennis, review of More Minds, p. 148; May, 1997, Ann W. Moore, review of The Garden, pp. 137-138; June, 1998, review of Greater than Angels, p. 148; September, 1998, review of Out of Their Minds, p. 206; March, 1999, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 212; November, 1999, review of A Meeting of Minds, p. 161; June, 2001, review of The War Within, p. 152; March, 2002, Kathleen Isaacs, review of Sparks Fly Upward, p. 234.
Social Education, April, 1998, review of The Garden, p. 15; May, 1999, review of Greater than Angels, p. 14.
Teacher Librarian, November, 1998, review of Greater than Angels, p. 47; March, 1999, review of Greater than Angels, p. 22.
Voice of Youth Advocates, June, 1989, p. 104; August, 1993, pp. 153-154; October, 1994, p. 210; April, 1996, p. 40; June, 1997, pp. 110-111, Mary Ann Capan, review of More Minds, p. 119; October, 1998, Patricia J. Morrow, review of Greater than Angels, p. 275; February, 1999, review of Out of Their Minds, p. 444; April, 1999, review of In My Enemy's House, p. 38; June, 2001, review of After the War, p. 98, review of The War Within, p. 124.
Wilson Library Bulletin, December, 1993, p. 119; February, 1995, p. 98.
Canadian Materials Web site, http://www.umanitoba.ca/cm/ (February 13, 1998), review of After the War; (February 27, 1998), review of The Garden; (November 12, 1999), review of Cloning Miranda; (December 10, 1999), review of In My Enemy's House; (April 27, 2001), review of Rebecca; (September 7, 2001), review of The War Within.
Carol Matas Home Page, http://www.carolmatas.com (August 2, 2005).
Teenreads, http://www.teenreads.com/ (January 15, 2003), review of In My Enemy's House.