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Review of What Will I Eat? Quid Edam?

Bolchazy, Marie Carducci, trans. by Mardah B. C. Weinfield. What Will I Eat? Quid Edam? Bolchazy-Carducci: Wauconda, 2002, pp 60. Illus. by Michelle Kathryn Fraczek. ISBN 086516542-4.

Marie Carducci Bolchazy has developed a series of beginning readers for Latin called, “An I am Reading Latin Book.” The first title in print is What Will I Eat? Quid Edam? with three more in the works: How Many Animals?, Who Loves Me?, and What Color is it?

What Will I Eat? Quid Edam? is a humorously illustrated (black and white) text developed for 4-8 year olds. The book simply takes you through possible choices for breakfast (ientaculum), then lunch (prandium) and finally dinner (cena). The illustrations by Michelle Kathryn Fraczek almost invite coloring and certainly keep one grinning. There are a few characters that make appearances throughout the book—cattus for one, stealing a bowl of lac in the section on ientaculum and then later chowing down on some cerealia. By prandium he has acquired habenulae piscati (“fish sticks”—but the illustration makes fun of the phrase and actually shows a fish on a stick!). By cena our cattus knows that piscatus is on the menu and has his paw poised above a fish bowl.

On the reverse of the title page are brief but useful comments on “Why Learn Latin?” In addition, Bolchazy-Carducci indicate on the back cover that you can go to their website at to hear the book read in Latin or to purchase a recording (though the recording is not available yet). Both of these are wonderful enticements to see this book not as a novelty, but as something valuable to add to the education of our children. To quote from the book: “It’s never too early to start learning Latin.”

All in all this is a delightful start for a new series of readers to reach elementary age students (and amuse those of us who are older but young at heart). I look forward to more books in this series.

copyright, Ginny Lindzey, 2002

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July 12 , 2002

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