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9781773062624_interior Enlarge Cover
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list price: $19.95
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published: Sep 2020
publisher: Groundwood Books Ltd

Our Little Kitchen

illustrated by Jillian Tamaki

tagged: cooking & food, stories in verse, homelessness & poverty
0 of 5
0 ratings
list price: $19.95
also available: eBook
published: Sep 2020
publisher: Groundwood Books Ltd

A picture book about a lively evening in a community kitchen from Governor General’s Award–winning author and illustrator Jillian Tamaki.

Tie on your apron!
Roll up your sleeves!
Pans are out, oven is hot.
The kitchen’s all ready,
Where do we start?

In this lively, rousing picture book from Caldecott Honoree Jillian Tamaki, a crew of resourceful neighbours come together to prepare a meal for their community. With a garden full of produce, a joyfully chaotic kitchen and a friendly meal shared at the table, Our Little Kitchen is a celebration of full bellies and people looking out for one another.

Includes two recipes and an author’s note about the volunteering experience that inspired the book.

Key Text Features
illustrated recipes
author's note
speech bubbles

Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts:

Identify words and phrases in stories or poems that suggest feelings or appeal to the senses.

Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text; summarize the text.

Explain major differences between poems, drama, and prose, and refer to the structural elements of poems (e.g., verse, rhythm, meter) and drama (e.g., casts of characters, settings, descriptions, dialogue, stage directions) when writing or speaking about a text.

About the Author
Jillian Tamaki is a cartoonist and illustrator. Originally from Calgary, Alberta, she now lives in New York City, where she teaches at the School of Visual Arts. She has published two books of personal work and one graphic novel, Skim, with Mariko Tamaki. Visit Jillian Tamaki's website: Visit Jillian Tamaki's blog: Check out Jillian's webcomic: Follow Jillian on Twitter:
Author profile page >
Contributor Notes

Jillian Tamaki is a cartoonist and illustrator from Calgary, Alberta, who now lives in Toronto, Ontario. Her first picture book, They Say Blue, won the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, among many other accolades. She co-created the highly acclaimed graphic novels Skim and This One Summer with Mariko Tamaki, and she is the creator of the webcomic SuperMutant Magic Academy, and Boundless, a collection of short comics for adults. She has won many awards for her work, including a Caldecott Honor, a Printz Honor, the Eisner Award, the Doug Wright Award and the Ignatz Award. Her work has also been named to the list of New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books.

Recommended Age and Grade
4 to 8
k to 3
Editorial Review

Praise for Jillian Tamaki and Our Little Kitchen:

Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2020

Publishers Weekly’s New and Noteworthy Kids’ and YA Books

CTV Your Morning Fresh Fall Reads

Canadian Children’s Book Centre Staff Picks

Washington Post Best Children’s Books of 2020


“By making the collaborative meal preparation visually brilliant, Tamaki injects energy into this life-giving celebration.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“This color-saturated, mouthwatering whirlwind of a book by a Caldecott honoree activates all five senses.” — New York Times

“Tamaki’s varied graphics and wildly characterful volunteers give this story breathless excitement and humour, making it wonderfully entertaining along with its message of generous community involvement.” — Toronto Star

Our Little Kitchen is a vital addition to all children’s collections for it addresses two timely issues of interest to Canadians, that of food waste/food insecurity and community aid measures. … Highly Recommended.” — Canadian Review of Materials

“There's so much life in Our Little Kitchen … In the dialogue of her characters, the liveliness of her rhyming text, or the bold colours and dynamism of her scenes, Jillian Tamaki lets young readers participate in the worthwhile endeavour of these food gatherings.” — CanLit for Little Canadians

“Every page sizzles and pops as Tamaki captures the kitchen’s hustle and bustle. … Our Little Kitchen is an inspiring call to action that will warm readers’ hearts and tummies.” — BookPage

Our Little Kitchen is a celebration of full bellies and looking out for one another.” — Book Riot

“[A] lively, rousing picture book.” — Canadian Children's Book Centre

“A sense of effervescent improvisation pervades the tale, through its cookery details and the text’s rhythm and design.” — Horn Book

“Tamaki’s colors are bright and the energy from the book gives out so much happiness. … The book is about hope and love for each other.” — International Examiner

“Energetic, filled to the brim with compassion and ever-changing perspectives, this book needs to be in every school library and classroom.” — Sal’s Fiction Addiction Blog

“… you’ve got one warmhearted book that delights the senses.” — Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast Blog

“Positive and kind, this is a community kitchen that everyone will want to join.” — Waking Brain Cells Blog

“The bouncy rhyming text and colorful, comic-inspired illustrations by Caldecott honoree Tamaki have a ton of kid appeal and an inspiring message.” — A Kids Book A Day Blog

“[A] deliciously uplifting, inspiring picture book.” — Books 4 Your Kids Blog

Praise for Jillian Tamaki and They Say Blue:

Winner Governor General’s Literary Award — Young People’s Literature — Illustrated Books, 2018

Winner Boston Globe–Horn Book Picture Book Award, 2018

Finalist TD Canadian Children's Literature Award, 2019

New York Times Notable Children’s Books of 2018

NPR’s 2018 Great Reads

CBC Books Best Canadian YA and Children’s Literature of 2018

“If They Say Blue is ‘about’ anything, it’s a peek into a child’s curious, questing, observant mind as she moves beyond received wisdom — what is it ‘they’ say again? — to thinking and feeling and yearning for herself.” — New York Times

“Thinking, imagining, noticing — these, Tamaki suggests, are the tools we have to understand our world.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Attuned to a child’s psychology and patterns of critical thinking, this visually stunning work is a must-purchase for libraries.” — School Library Journal, starred review

“With her first picture book, Jillian Tamaki displays a mastery of the form along with a sensitive understanding of the imaginative life of a small child.” — Quill & Quire, starred review

“Readers experience the colors and sensations of the world through the varying moods and observations of one little girl …. this is a reminder to slow down, savor the present, notice small details, and relish childlike wonder.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Our Little Kitchen shines.” — Picture Book Builders Blog

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