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Children's LiteratureThe talented Maya Angelou once again lives up to her reputation as a person who respects cultural diversity by writing the "Maya's World" book series. Each book is about a child from a different part of the globe; this particular one is Renee Marie, an exceptionally tall girl who lives in France. Although written in English, one can hear French accents as Renee Marie goes with her school class to visit the Eiffel Tower. She has one problem, though; she is afraid of heights. While waiting to go up the elevator to the observation deck, another class waits nearby. Of this group, one particular boy stands out to Renee Marie and they quickly become friends as he helps her overcome her biggest fear. Eloquently written and charmingly illustrated, this book is a sure winner for children everywhere. Other books in this series include Angelina of Italy, Izak of Lapland, and Mikale of Hawaii. Each book includes a paper doll of the main character. 2004, Random House, Ages 5 to 8.
—Cherie Ilg Haas