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Clarence's Big Secret

Roy MacGregor

Christine MacGregor Cation

Mathilde Cinq-Mars

Clarence Brazier kept a big secret for nearly one hundred years: he didn’t know how to read. This picture book tells the true story of his journey to learn—and then love—to read.

As a young boy, Clarence cut class and took over the farm work when his father was blinded in an accident. Clarence worked as a logger, maintained his own successful farm, and became a father and a grandfather. All the while, he never learned to read. His wife was the only one who knew his secret. When she passed away, Clarence taught himself to read using junk mail. He was almost one hundred years old! Eventually, Clarence confessed to his daughter, a teacher, who helped him learn more. He went on to love reading and became a passionate literacy advocate until he died at age 105.

This inspirational and empowering story highlights Clarence’s resourcefulness and the power of literacy. It illustrates the use of growth mindset to achieve difficult goals, and shows it’s never too late to learn a new skill.Roy MacGregor, Christine MacGregor Cation, Mathilde Cinq-Mars
Regular price $19.95 CAD
Regular price Sale price $19.95 CAD

SKU: 205120n0nn1nWWW | ISBN: 9781771473316

"This is a well-written ode to motivation, perseverance, and the idea that it’s never too late." - Kirkus Reviews

"The engaging text tells an unusual story with just enough detail to give it a period feel, bolstered by the well-composed drawings with washes of gentle color and plenty of understated charm. A memorable picture book." - Booklist

"Listeners will enjoy every moment of this inspirational and joyful book." - Sal's Fiction Addiction

"Tell[s] an interesting story and conveys important lessons about the value of reading and the fact that it is never too late to learn something new." - Canadian Review of Materials

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Publication date

March 15, 2020

Number of pages




Interest age

From 4 to 8