We continue our special coverage of this year’s Governor General's Literature Award winners in conversation with the acclaimed Fan Brothers (Terry Fan, Eric Fan, Devin Fan), co-winners of the 2020 GG's Award for Young People’s Literature (Illustration) for The Barnabus Project (Tundra). The 2020 GG Award Peer Assessment Committee says The Barnabus Project is,
“A twisty-turny adventure story that travels from the deep underground to the starry skies, featuring a gang of friends, aka ‘Failed Projects,’ who show the power of solidarity and non-conformity. This sweet and surreal ode to sticking together radically breaks from typical storylines to deliver a manifesto for mass escape from any system that demands perfection, sameness and compliance. Stunningly and intricately illustrated, this book pays cinematic attention to pacing and detail. Like Barnabus, the Fan Brothers have broken the mold.”
Terry, Eric, and Devin grew up in Toronto, where they continue to live and work. Recipients of the prestigious Sendak Fellowship, Kate Greenaway Medal nominees, and Governor General’s Literary Award nominees, Terry and Eric are the author/illustrators of the critically acclaimed books The Night Gardener and Ocean Meets Sky, and the illustrators of the best …
Erin Bow has won this year’s Governor General’s Award for Young People’s Literature (Text) for Stand on the Sky (Scholastic).
The jury says “In writing that is both evocative and perfectly pitched for young readers, Stand on the Sky tells the heartfelt and gripping tale of a Kazakh girl who, despite cultural barriers, struggles to train a wild eagle. With its authentic voice, the novel transports the reader to the steppes of Mongolia and opens up a fascinating world where age-old tradition is overturned by one young girl’s bravery and determination.”
Erin Bow is a former physicist turned poet and writer of stories for young people. Her first novel, Plain Kate, won the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award. Her second, Sorrow’s Knot, won the Monica Hughes Award for Science Fiction and Fantasy, and her third, The Scorpion Rules, won her a second Monica Hughes Award and was the Canadian Library Association Book of the Year for young adults. Erin publishes equally lauded poetry under her maiden name, Erin Noteboom. She lives in Kitchener, Ontario, with author James Bow and their two tween-aged daughters.
Congrats on your GG Award, Erin. How does it feel to be recognized in this way by your peers?
I’m so thrilled. Stand on the …
Too often, great blog posts and lists get buried in the web’s relentless tendency to favour the new over the old. That's the reason for Top Shelf, a series that shines a spotlight on the best of 49th Shelf lists and posts, no matter their recency.
For quite some time, Ms. Julie Booker, children's librarian and author of the critically acclaimed Up Up Up, has been knocking out incredible posts for those interested in great kids' and YA books; we call it Notes from a Children's Librarian. Here's a round-up of some of our favourites—click on the text link or book jacket for the full list of books captured in Julie's posts.
Enviro Fiction Picks: Environmental issues can be so vast and complicated that for kids, simple, compelling stories are often the best way to instill a respect for our natural world and a sense of what they can do to be good to it. Julie picks out four books here for different age ranges.
Funny Books for Young Readers: Lest we ever forget, it can be hard work being a kid, especially given the ever-changing social dynamics at …
In their busiest season of the year, the staff at Ella Minnow (Toronto), Kaleidoscope Books (Ottawa), Woozles (Halifax), and Babar Books (Montreal) and McNally Robinson (Winnipeg and Saskatoon) nonetheless pulled together a selection of excellent Canadian tween and teen fiction – complete with the reasons they love them and in addition to the list of books for littler kids we featured earlier this week. It's with much appreciation that we present this fantastic list ... please check out all the books here.
Middle Grade: This can be such a tricky age to buy for, as reading level and also maturity can be so variable among tweens. Here are some books that just might be the right fit for the tween in your life:
Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom by Susin Nielsen (McNally Robinson): "The title makes you pick this book up but the story makes it all worthwhile as Violet tries to help her mom cope after a devastating divorce."
Mr. and Mrs. Bunny – Detectives Extraordinaire by Polly Horvath (McNally Robinson): "A hilarious over-the-top mystery from the author of Everything On a Waffle, translated from Rabbit."
That Boy Red by Rachna Gilmore (Ella Minnow): "This depression era novel set in PEI features a handy, clever, but not bookish Red. It is a smartly told a …
This fall, Canadian authors and illustrators shine as bright as ever in this stellar lineup of new books for kids and young readers.
In Ella and the Balloons in the Sky by Danny Appleby and Lauren Pirie, gorgeous illustrations help tell a whimsical story of love and loss. Artist Rebecca Chaperon's Eerie Dearies is an Edward Gorey-esque alphabet book featuring 26 reasons for being absent from school. The award-winning Geneviève Côté follows up Mr King's Things (just nominated for the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award) with Mr King's Castle, another fun book with an environmental theme.
A new Sheree Fitch book is always an event, and this one is extra-special. Singily Skipping Along is described as "body movement multi-sensory inventive language poem," a book about bodies and the amazing ways they move, featuring hooked-rug illustrations by Deanne Fitzpatrick. Julie Flett's Wild Berries (also published in Cree as Pakwa Che Menisu) is a story about a boy picking berries with his grandmother, and it includes a recipe for blueberry p …