September 27, 2022 (Toronto) – Today Penguin Random House Canada announces an exciting new development in the Tundra Book Group, Canada’s oldest English-language children’s book publisher. Effective November 7, 2022, David A. Robertson will join Tundra Book Group in the newly created role of Editorial Director, in which he will develop, shape, launch, and oversee a new children’s imprint dedicated to publishing Indigenous writers and illustrators.
This yet-to-be-named imprint will attract and create new opportunities for emerging Indigenous talent across the spectrum of fiction and non-fiction, alongside a few already established voices in this space. It will publish books for young readers of all ages across all categories of children’s books.
David A. Robertson is one of the most celebrated writers working today, the bestselling author of the ongoing Misewa Saga (including The Barren Grounds, The Great Bear, and The Stone Child), the two-time winner of the Governor General’s Literary Award (for On the Trapline and When We Were Alone), and the recipient of numerous other awards, among them the Writers’ Union of Canada’s Freedom to Read Award; his books have also been shortlisted for the prestigious TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award and the Ontario Library Association’s Silver Birch Award, among others, and have been included on several best of the year lists.
Kristin Cochrane, CEO of Penguin Random House Canada, said: We are truly honoured to welcome Dave Robertson to our team. It is our hope and expectation that this initiative will provide pathways to publication and literary success for new and emerging writers and illustrators. In this new capacity, Dave’s work will be transformational and will shape the culture for many years to come.
Tara Walker, Tundra Book Group publisher said: Dave is our treasured author, and I’ve long admired his immense talent as a storyteller, his tireless energy, and his remarkable dedication to uplifting Indigenous voices. I can’t think of anyone more perfectly suited to shape and lead the important work of this new imprint. I’ve learned so much from Dave already, and I’m delighted for this opportunity to work more closely alongside him in his new role. Most of all, I’m excited for the kids whose lives will be reflected in and altered by the wonderful books from other Indigenous creators Dave will usher into the world.
David A. Robertson, Editorial Director, Tundra Book Group said: When I was a kid, I dreamed of being an author. As I got older, there were many writers I looked up to who inspired me to continue pursuing the goals I had set for myself. In particular, Indigenous writers such as Thomas King and Beatrice Mosionier not only showed me what was possible but opened doors for me to do what I do. I never imagined that I would be in the position I’m in today, but as my career has progressed, I’ve recognized the importance of creating opportunities for new and emerging Indigenous writers so they can write stories that matter, that heal, that inspire, and that lead us on a good path. Working with Tundra has been an incredible experience. They’ve believed in my vision as an author, and I trust them to carry out that vision. I’m thrilled to strengthen our relationship in this way and work with a team that sees how vital it is to amplify voices and continue to open doors.
More about David A. Robertson: David A. Robertson (he/him/his) was the 2021 recipient of the Writers’ Union of Canada Freedom to Read Award. He is the author of numerous books for young readers including When We Were Alone, which won the 2017 Governor General’s Literary Award and the McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award. The Barren Grounds, the first book in the middle-grade The Misewa Saga series, received a starred review from Kirkus, was a Kirkus and Quill & Quire best middle-grade book of 2020, was a USBBY and Texas Lone Star selection, was shortlisted for the Ontario Library Association’s Silver Birch Award, and was a finalist for the 2020 Governor General’s Literary Award. His memoir, Black Water: Family, Legacy, and Blood Memory, was a Globe and Mail and Quill & Quire book of the year in 2020 and won the Alexander Kennedy Isbister Award for Non-Fiction as well as the Carol Shields Winnipeg Book Award at the 2020 Manitoba Book Awards. On The Trapline, illustrated by Julie Flett, won David’s second Governor General’s Literary Award and was named one of the best picture books of 2021 by the Canadian Children’s Book Centre, The Horn Book, New York Public Library, Quill & Quire, and American Indians in Children’s Literature. Dave is the writer and host of the podcast Kíwew, winner of the 2021 RTDNA Prairie Region Award for Best Podcast. He is a member of Norway House Cree Nation and currently lives in Winnipeg.
More about Tundra Book Group: Tundra Books (tundrabooks.com) is Canada’s oldest English-language children’s book publisher. Tundra is home to some of the world’s most accomplished authors and illustrators as well as exciting new voices. We are renowned across North America and throughout the world for our beautifully illustrated and designed award-winning books.
Penguin Random House Canada aims to nourish a universal passion for reading by connecting authors and their writing with readers everywhere. The company publishes over 800 books in various formats each year in the North American market across nineteen distinct imprints and distributes another 10,000 titles in Canada on behalf of Penguin Random House publishers in the U.S. and the U.K., and many clients. It has also developed its own internationally recognized audiobook program and runs an in-house recording studio. Visit penguinrandomhouse.ca for more information and follow us at @PenguinRandomCA.