Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Canadian Children's Book Centre announces awards...

The Canadian Children's Book Centre has just announced a wack of short-lists for Canadian Children's Book Awards. So exciting! You will definitely want to read them all!

Sponsored by the TD Bank Financial Group

I Found a Dead Bird: The Kids’ Guide to the Cycle of Life & Death
Written by Jan Thornhill
Maple Tree Press

“Fascinating and one-of-a-kind… This book is groundbreaking… Complimented by wonderful photographs, this book covers a difficult subject in a beautiful way.”

Johnny Kellock Died Today
Written by Hadley Dyer
HarperCollins Canada

“This story moves like a meandering, enjoyable summer full of wit, humour and honesty… Dyer is a stylist, an exquisite writer.”

Odd Man Out
Written by Sarah Ellis
Groundwood Books

“Beautifully written… I re-read this book as soon as I finished… Ellis skillfully weaves together a story within a story and creates a place for the reader… A brilliant ending.”

Stanley’s Wild Ride
Written by Linda Bailey
Illustrated by Bill Slavin
Kids Can Press

“Bailey’s fabulous dogs paired with Slavin’s perfect illustrations make for a picture book that is successful on all levels… This book is laugh-out-loud funny… What a great ride!”

Rex Zero and the End of the World
Written by Tim Wynne-Jones
Groundwood Books
“A fabulous book about the new kid in town…I laughed, I cried… Brilliant and beautifully written… Wynne-Jones is a master writer at the top of his field.”

Jury members: Merle Harris, author and storyteller; Theo Heras, Children’s Literature Resource Collection Specialist, Lillian H. Smith Library, Toronto Public Library; Dr. Dave Jenkinson, professor, Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba; Norene Smiley, author; and Maya Munro Byers, owner, Livres Babar Books, Montreal.
. . . .

Sponsored by the Fleck Family Foundation

Factory Girl
Written by Barbara Greenwood
Kids Can Press

“A fresh take on this universal topic… The research is meticulous… Greenwood expertly weaves together fact and fiction… Poignant, personal and fabulous, this book draws you in.”

Fire! The Renewal of a Forest
Written and illustrated by Celia Godkin
Fitzhenry & Whiteside

“This book demonstrates a scientific point in an enlightening way by showing examples of how wildlife not only survive but thrive after a fire… The artwork is stunning… Godkin marries fine art and non-fiction like no other.”

Written by Jane Springer
Groundwood Books

“Well-written, well-argued, well-researched…This book is part of an incredible series… Springer explores this compelling and relevant topic making it accessible to teens.”

I Found a Dead Bird: The Kids’ Guide to the Cycle of Life & Death
Written by Jan Thornhill
Maple Tree Press

“Exceptional, original and engaging… The topics covered in this book are so powerful and so unusually fascinating… If you had to pick one way to explain our struggle with life and death this book would be it.”

Ryan and Jimmy: And the Well in Africa That Brought Them Together
Written by Herb Shoveller
Kids Can Press
“Compelling, touching, true-to-life and inspirational… Written with empathy for a child’s point of view, this book manages to neither make its subjects seem like heroes nor trivialize their lives.”

JURY MEMBERS: Mary Anne Cree, Junior School Librarian, The Bishop Strachan School; Polly Fleck, Governor General’s Award-nominated poet and member of the Fleck family; Frieda Wishinsky, author; Sheila Koffman, owner, Another Story Bookshop, Toronto; and Todd Kyle, branch manager, Churchill Meadows Library, Mississauga Library System.
. . . .
Sponsored by A. Charles Baillie
Abby's Birds
Written by Ellen Schwartz
Illustrated by Sima Elizabeth Shefrin
Tradewind Books

“Beautiful integration of visuals and text... This innovative picture book uses paper collage and origami to illustrate its theme about the relationships between youth and age.”

Written and illustrated by Mélanie Watt
Kids Can Press
“Watt invites young readers to explore art through her amazing, playful and luminous illustrations… The anxieties and fears of moving and making new friends are sensitively captured in this gentle tale… Watt knows exactly what her audience wants.”

Fox Walked Alone
Written and illustrated by Barbara Reid
North Winds Press/Scholastic Canada

“A beautiful book with amazing artwork… With lovely rhythm and perfect poetry, Reid shares a unique version of the animals’ journey to Noah’s Ark... A timeless, visual feast.”

Scaredy Squirrel
Written and illustrated by Mélanie Watt
Kids Can Press

“Clever, exciting and groundbreaking, this book is a real delight... A great and interactive way to get kids reading… Kids will love this book!”

When You Were Small
Written by Sara O'Leary
Illustrated by Julie Morstad
Simply Read Books

“Beautifully illustrated and timeless… O’Leary takes the reader on a whimsical tour of the imagination and captures the essence of what it is like to be a child.”

Zoe and the Fawn
Written by Catherine Jameson
Illustrated by Julie Flett
Theytus Books

“A lovely and gentle picture book with a touching storyline that greatly appeals to younger readers… Beautifully integrates Native Okanagan (Syilx) words and expressions into the text.”

JURY MEMBERS: Jeffrey Canton, Faculty of Arts, York University and children’s book reviewer; Myra Junyk, literacy advocate and author; and Janis Nostbakken, writer, producer, broadcaster and founding editor of ChickaDEE magazine.
. . . .
Sponsored by the Canadian Children’s Book Centre’s Bilson Endowment Fund

Written by Eva Wiseman
Tundra Books

“A poignant story that depicts the horrors of life inside the German concentration camps and the prejudice and persecution which the Jewish people experienced… Wiseman’s writing style is captivating and young people will be easily swept into the story.”

Meyers’ Rebellion
Written by Connie Brummel Crook
Fitzhenry & Whiteside

“Crook brings us an action-packed story full of historical details about real people… The characters are strong and independent, holding to their beliefs as they become involved in the 1837 Rebellion in Upper Canada.”

A Rebel’s Daughter: The 1837 Rebellion Diary of Arabella Stevenson
Written by Janet Lunn
Scholastic Canada

“Lunn tells a tale of the “fall from grace” of an upper society family during the 1837 Rebellion… The book is well-researched and gives authentic details of the political situation in Upper Canada at the time.”
Terror at Turtle Mountain
Written by Penny Draper
Coteau Books

“Draper has done a first rate job of describing a terror filled night at Turtle Mountain… The reader lives the Frank Slide through the experiences of the well-developed and likeable character of Nathalie Vaughan and by the seamless weaving in of several historical stories.”

Where Soldiers Lie
Written by John Wilson
Key Porter Books

“This is an absolutely terrific book… Never lagging with a credible hero and an exotic setting which should engage both female and male readers… The pacing is flawless.”

JURY MEMBERS: Albert Fowler, author and storyteller; Sharon McKay, author; Vicki Pennell, editor of Resource Links and IMPACT; and Gail de Vos (chair), storyteller and professor, School of Library and Information Studies, University of Alberta.
. . . .
The TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award was established in 2005 to honour the most distinguished book of the year for children aged 1 to 13. Entries are judged on the quality of the text and illustrations and the book’s overall contribution to literature. All books for children, in any genre, written by a Canadian, are eligible for the award. The winning book receives $20,000 and there is $10,000 to divide amongst the honour books. The publisher of the winning book receives $2,500 for promotional purposes.

The Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction was established by the Fleck Family Foundation in 1999 to recognize Canada’s exceptional non-fiction books for young people. The award honours Norma Fleck (1906 – 1998), who inspired a deep love of reading in her children and grandchildren. Dr. Jim Fleck, who initiated the Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction, is the son of Norma Fleck. The winning book receives $10,000.

The Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award honours excellence in the illustrated picture book format, for children aged 3 to 6. Charles Baillie, retired Chairman and CEO of the TD Bank Financial Group, is delighted to give the prize in his wife Marilyn’s name. As an award-winning children’s book author and an early learning specialist, Marilyn is involved in and passionate about children’s literature. The winning book receives $10,000.

The Geoffrey Bilson Award was established in 1988 in memory of the respected historian and children's author, Geoffrey Bilson. The $1,000 prize is awarded annually to the Canadian author of an outstanding work of historical fiction for young people. In 2005, an endowment fund was created to support this award. If you wish to contribute to this fund, please contact the CCBC.

The Canadian Children’s Book Centre is a national, not-for-profit organization and registered charity founded in 1976 to promote, support and encourage the reading, writing and illustrating of Canadian books for children and teens. With book collections and extensive resources in five cities across Canada, the CCBC is a treasure-trove for anyone interested in Canadian books for young readers. For more information, please visit www.bookcentre.ca.

For more information, please contact:

Charlotte Teeple
Executive Director
The Canadian Children’s Book Centre
40 Orchard View Blvd., Suite 101
Toronto, Ontario M4R 1B9
Tel: 416.975.0010
Fax: 416.975.8970

Kit Pearson and Ken Oppel coming to Victoria

A special event is coming to Victoria hosted by Munro's Books. Kit Pearson and Ken Oppel will be reading from new works on Friday October 12th at 7:30 at The Conference Centre. It will be very cool. I will be introducing Kit and Grenfell Featherstone, a freelance editor and one of Ken's former high school teachers, will be introducing Ken. You won't want to miss these two fabulous writers. Hurry Hurry Hurry, tickets won't last long and are available at:
1108 Government Street, Victoria BC V8W 1Y2
phone (250) 382-2464 fax (250) 382-2832

Ken and Kit will be reading from their new books followed by a signing. Tickets are available at the store for $5.00 and can be used toward the purchase of Darkwing or A Perfect Gentle Knight (one ticket per book). Don’t delay as we expect this event to sell out quickly!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

The Cybils Awards

Sorry, no review today. It's Saturday almost afternoon, and I've spent the morning in bed reading. After a day of anxiety over the near loss of all my email files, I deserve it! I'm part way through a Michael Morpurgo title, which I will report on soon. Tomorrow the Victoria Children's Literature Roundtable (which I chair) will be voting on our pick for the Information Book Award. Our votes will be pooled with votes from other Roundtable votes from across Canada, and will be announced in November. I have held off reviewing any of those titles but will do once our votes are in. As well, I confess to having been distracted by Kathy Reichs Break No Bones. Yes, I have an addiction to forensic type murder mysteries, and Reich's Temple mysteries are a favourite. But, soon I'll be back to reading kids books.

In the meantime, the Cybils Blogger Children's and YA Literary Awards for 2007 are in the works. The organizers are in search of bloggers to read read read, so if you are over 13, are a kid's book lover, and are a blogger, check them out. Alas, I'm too busy with other things at the moment so can't participate. I will definitely read the books on the short-list though.