Tundra at TCAF 2010

Can’t wait to read Alison Dare, Little Miss Adventures and Alison Dare, The Heart of the Maiden?

Well you’re in luck! Tundra Books will be exhibiting at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival this year! Come by our booth at TCAF this weekend to get your copy before anyone else. We will be pre-releasing the books for TCAF only! The Beguiling will be our partnered bookseller at the booth. Otherwise, you’ll have to patiently wait for the release date. =)

Get your copies signed! The Alison Dare creators, J. Torres and Jason Bone, will be signing at our table from 2:00pm-3:00pm on both Saturday and Sunday.

Alison Dare, Little Miss Adventures
By J. Torres
Illustrated by Jason Bone
ISBN: 978-0-88776-934-4
96 Pages; Black & White
For ages 8+
Trade Paperback
“Filled with life and energy, the pictures seem to move on the pages as you read them.” — Jack Blake, GrayHavenMagazine.com

Alison Dare, The Heart of the Maiden
By J. Torres
Illustrated by Jason Bone
ISBN: 978-0-88776-935-1
104 Pages; Black & White
For ages 8+
Trade Paperback
“These are the comics I wish I had as a kid! … Jason Bone’s art really brings the story to life; it’s expressive without being exaggerated, and he really brings out the goofy humor of the stories.” – Brigid Alverson, Comic Book Resources

Additionally, TCAF has Kids Day Programming! On Sunday, May 9th from 11:30am-12:15am in the Novella Room, they will be spotlighting Alison Dare! J. Torres and J. Bone will introduce you to Alison’s world of globe-trotting quests filled with danger with a Q&A session and live drawing.

Tyranny author and illustrator, Lesley Fairfield, will be signing at the Tundra table at 3:00pm on Saturday and at 12 noon on Sunday.

By Lesley Fairfield
ISBN 978-0-88776-903-0
120 pages; Black & White
For ages 11+
Trade Paperback
New York Public Library’s Stuff for the Teen Age list
“ . . . This is one of the most moving and important graphic novels to come along in years . . .” – Starred Review, School Library Journal

Come by, say “hi,” and pick up the Tundra Books and McClelland & Stewart Graphic Novel Sampler, featuring the works of: J. Torres, J. Bone, Lesley Fairfield, Shaun Tan, David Small, Cam Kennedy, Alan Grant, Scott Chantler, and Steve Murray!

TCAF Exhibition Days:
Saturday, May 8th, 2010 from 9am-5pm
Sunday, May 9th, 2010 from 11am-5pm
Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street, Toronto
Free admission! Follow TCAF on Twitter.

First Weekend of May

Whoaa do we have some great events lined up for this weekend! Drop by if you’re in the neighbourhood and check these out, they’re all free to attend!

Speaking of free, May 1 is Free Comic Book Day!
Map: 12-55 Wyndham Street North, Guelph, ON N1H 7T8
J. Torres will be signing at the Dragon (Guelph, ON) from 10:00am to 2:00pm. You could pick up an Alison Dare, The Heart of the Maiden chapbook and other goodies (while supplies last). I hear that there will be yummy treats too… be sure to go to the Dragon early or you might miss out!
PS: Open Book: Toronto asked Alison Dare to answer The Proust Questionnaire. Keep an eye out for the interview and giveaway contest!

Saturday, May 1, 2010 – 1:30pm
Map: 740 Richmond Street, London, ON N6A 1L6
Author and athlete, Laura Robinson will be at the Oxford Book Shop (London, ON) for a presentation and signing of Cyclist BikeList: The Book for Every Rider. Learn about bike safety and maintenance as Bike Month approaches! Laura will be bringing in a sample tool kit.

Sunday, May 2, 2010 – 2:00pm
Map: 2901 Bayview Avenue, North York, ON M2K 1E6
Join Rona Arato at Chapters Bayview Village (Toronto, ON) as we celebrate the launch of Mrs. Kaputnik’s Pool Hall and Matzo Ball Emporium. Rona will be reading at 2:30pm, pay special attention and you could win some neat prizes by correctly answering a few questions.

We hope to see you there, will anyone be going to all three? There should be a prize for that!

Guest Post: Nan Forler

Nan Forler, author of Bird Child, was invited to participate in gritLIT 2010. Here, she recaps her adventures in Hamilton for the festival and a reading at a school she used to teach in. Sounds like she had a busy (but fun) week! Photos courtesy of Nan Forler.

Nan Forler: I have recently returned from two days of readings at inner-city schools: the first two as part of the Hamilton GritLit Literary Festival, and the second at a school Read-a-thon in Kitchener.

You can feel the spirit when you walk into these inner-city schools. There is a joy among the kids, a sense of belonging in a place where they are free to be themselves. The teachers seem to have a palpable love of the school and the sense of humour needed to get through each day.

I drive through the fog and rain to Earl Kitchener School, where Lindsay Hodder, the children’s event coordinator for GritLit, welcomes me at the door. She has everything meticulously arranged and ready to go. We wander up and down stairs and through old brick corridors, with a history and character you don’t find in the “leafy green schools,” as those of us who teach in poorer neighbourhoods refer to the fancy new buildings in suburbia. The audience is much larger than planned, but the students are wonderfully attentive and eager to participate, the teachers supportive and welcoming. Sincere thank yous as we pack up to leave.

That afternoon, I drive past Hess Street School twice, questioning my GPS that insists I have arrived at my destination. The school is tucked between factories and row houses, with no parking for me, my guitar, and my gear in the pouring rain.

Hess Street School is 75% ESL students, the literacy teacher tells us. “You’ll love these kids,” she adds. And who wouldn’t? The students file in, a United Nations of faces, the future of Canada in front of me. With every question, a hundred hands of varying shades shoot up, some students so eager to answer, they can barely hold it in. During the reading, there is complete silence, until the oohs and awes of the final image, the huge snow castle filling the wall of their gymnasium, then appreciative applause.

Afterwards, the students run towards me, wanting to strum my guitar, page through the book, talk to me. A little boy picks up a tiny feather left behind and looks up at me. “You can have that if you’d like,” I tell him. He clutches it in his hand and smiles. I sit down for a photo and the students fight to sit close to me, to hold the book, to put their arms around me. In the hall afterwards, they hug me as they pass, then continue walking. They shout thank you and clap and cheer from the school yard as we leave. One boy bolts towards us and says in careful English, “Thank you for reading your book, Bird Child, to our school, Nan Forler.”

The following morning I am off to my beloved St. Bernadette, a school close to downtown Kitchener, where I taught for 3 years. I am exhausted and fighting off a migraine and a cold but it feels like I am coming home. I know this school, these kids, this staff. I know the challenges that come from teaching here, that go far beyond curriculum, that have to do with helping to raise up children in spite of the life they have been handed. I understand when the principal tells me, her eyes filled with tears, that yesterday was a heart-breaking day.

Again, I feel the love of appreciative kids. “You the best story, Ms Forler,” one girl tells me, pointedly.

I hope these experiences pass on the love of literacy to these kids. I am thankful that the Hamilton GritLit Festival chose these schools as the audience for this story, that the teachers and parents at St. Bernadette chose a Read-a-thon for the school fundraiser.

Standing up for kids like these, being a voice for those who are voiceless, passing on a love of literacy, bringing about justice – this is the message of Bird Child. This is what it’s all about.

Earth Day 2010

Celebrating the love of nature! Did you know? Tundra Books and McClelland & Stewart have a Green Committee to help minimize our carbon footprint in the office.

Love Every Leaf
The Life of Landscape Architect Cornelia Hahn Oberlander

Written by Kathy Stinson
Hardcover | 96 pages
Ages 14+
ISBN 978-0-88776-804-0
“Fascinating biography…strong environmental theme….Interesting to read and very thought provoking. What an amazing woman Cornelia Oberlander is!” – Delaware County Library System

The Man Who Made Parks
The Story of Parkbuilder Frederick Law Olmsted

Written by Frieda Wishinsky
Illustrated by Song Nan Zhang
Hardcover | 32 pages
All ages
ISBN 978-0-88776-902-3
“Frieda Whishinsky’s informative story and Song Nan Zhang’s evocative paintings nicely capture the spirit of a growing nation and the will of a resourceful people.” – The Orlando Sentinel

Trash Action
A Fresh Look at Garbage

Written by Ann Love and Jane Drake
Illustrated by Mark Thurman
Trade Paperback | 80 pages
Ages 8+
ISBN 978-0-88776-721-0
“The breezy style will attract browsers and may encourage them to try some of the trash-reduction strategies suggested.” – School Library Journal

Cool Woods
A Trip around the World’s Boreal Forest
Written by Jane Drake and Ann Love
Illustrated by Andrew Kiss
Hardcover | 80 pages
Age 9+
ISBN 978-0-88776-608-4
“…a remarkable look at the last great forest on Earth…each chapter is full of wonderful information…But the real merit of this book is the obvious passion that the authors feel for saving and preserving this unique and vital “lungs of the Earth” environment” – Victoria Times Colonist

Snow Amazing
Cool Facts and Warm Tales

Written by Jane Drake and Ann Love
Illustrated by Mark Thurman
Hardcover | 80 pages
Ages 9+
ISBN 978-0-88776-670-1
“…this book leaves no flake unturned in its detail…a strong resource.” – The Horn Book Guide

In My Backyard
Written by Margriet Ruurs
Illustrated by Ron Broda
Hardcover | 32 pages
Ages 4-8
ISBN: 978-0-88776-775-3
“…Made entirely of sculpted paper and watercolors, Broda’s awe-inspiring scenes have a depth and realism that draw readers in. And as if that weren’t enough, readers get the extra treat of hidden details – he conceals a ladybug on each spread and a clue as to what animal will be featured on the next page. A necessary library purchase, this is also sure to find a home on budding artists’ and young naturalists’ bookshelves.” – Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews

For more information about Earth Day, please visit the Earth Day Network‘s website.

Tuesdays with Tundra 1

Tuesdays with Tundra is a monthly post on our new releases. The following books are available today in stores and online!

Me & Death: An Afterlife Adventure
By Richard Scrimger
ISBN 978-0-88776-796-8
Ages 11+

“…fast-paced tale of life and death… Scrimger packs a lot into this short, philosophical tale, which openly acknowledges its Dickensian inspiration. …an accessible story of redemption.” – Publishers Weekly

Mrs. Kaputnik’s Pool Hall and Matzo Ball Emporium
By Rona Arato
ISBN 978-0-88776-967-2
Ages 8-11

“…a culturally diverse story of hardships, anguish, success and happiness. …the story of Mrs. Kaputnik and her children will captivate the reader….” – Resource Links

No Moon
By Irene N. Watts
ISBN 978-0-88776-971-9
Ages 9+

“…Watts provides a fascinating account of what the great unsinkable ship was like. The catastrophe is rendered in a heartbreakingly graceful style, and Lou performs heroically in shepherding her two little girls to safety on a lifeboat in this uniquely engaging and satisfying coming-of-age historical adventure tale.” – Starred Review, Booklist

Talking Tails: The Incredible Connection between People and Their Pets
By Ann Love and Jane Drake
Illustrated by Bill Slavin
ISBN 978-0-88776-884-2
Ages 9-12

“…Love and Drake celebrate the affection that connects people with their pets…. this will draw animal lovers like a magnet.” – Booklist

Cyclist BikeList: The Book for Every Rider
By Laura Robinson
Illustrated by Ramón K. Pérez
ISBN 978-0-88776-784-5
Ages 9+

Bikes are becoming an ever-more vital part of daily life for people of all ages. Laura Robinson combines fascinating history with useful and fun information. The book features riding superstars like Lance Armstrong as well as the kids from the Chippewas of Nawash First Nation, whose mountain bike team is coached by Robinson.

By Marla Stewart Konrad
ISBN 978-0-88776-997-9
Ages 3-6

“…a book that children will enjoy sharing with their grandparents… an excellent book… a grand resource for Early child hood programs that include family themes.” – Highly Recommended, CM Magazine

I Like to Play
By Marla Stewart Konrad
ISBN 978-0-88776-998-6
Ages 3-6

“…The pictures are what draw the reader in. They are very vibrant and colourful…. Multicultural materials are very important to allow children to see how similar we are even if we look different….” – Highly Recommended, CM Magazine