Created in 2002, the Chocolate Lily Book Awards strives to increase literacy for grade school children in British Columbia while celebrating BC authors and illustrators. Tundra Books would like to congratulate Rachelle Delaney and Cale Atkinson! The Bonaventure Adventures (Rachelle Delaney) won the Novel category and Where Oliver Fits (Cale Atkinson) won the Picture Book category!
Sebastian Konstantinov has grown up in a travelling circus, surrounded by talented performers. Seb, however, has no circus skills at all. He can’t even turn a somersault. But he does know this: the old-fashioned circus his father founded is out of date and running low on money. If someone doesn’t figure out how to save it, the Konstantinovs will be in real trouble. Seb thinks he may have the answer, and it involves attending the highly selective Bonaventure Circus School in Montreal, Canada. Seb secretly writes to the school’s Directrice (conveniently leaving out the part about his lack of circus skills), and to his surprise, he gets accepted right away. Now all he has to do is keep his lack of talent a secret. But it turns out that Seb is not the only one with secrets. The school is literally crumbling beneath the students’ feet, and the Directrice is counting on Seb’s “talent” to save it.
Where Oliver Fits
By Cale Atkinson
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Tundra Books
Oliver has always dreamed about where he will fit. Will he be in the mane of a unicorn? The tentacle of a pirate squid? The helmet of an astronaut? When he finally goes in search of his perfect place, he finds that trying to fit in is a lot harder than he thought. But like any puzzle, a little trial and error leads to a solution, and Oliver figures out exactly where he belongs.
Where Oliver Fits is a sweet and funny story that explores all the highs and lows of learning to be yourself and shows that fitting in isn’t always the best fit.
The BC Book Prizes announced that Susin Nielsen won the Sheila A Egoff Children’s Literature Prize for her middle-grade novel No Fixed Address. Congratulations, Susin!
No Fixed Address Susin Nielsen
Hardcover | 288 Pages | Tundra Books
Felix Knuttson, twelve, is an endearing kid with an incredible brain for trivia. His mom Astrid is loving but unreliable; she can’t hold onto a job, or a home. When they lose their apartment in Vancouver, they move into a camper van. Felix must keep “home” a secret. When he gets to compete on a national quiz show, Felix is determined to win — the cash prize will bring them a home. But what happens is not at all what Felix expected.
The BC Book Prizes, established in 1985, aims to recognize and promote the achievements of the book community in BC and Yukon, through the Prizes and related programs. Seven prizes are presented annually at the BC Book Prizes Gala in the spring, and are administered and awarded by members of a non-profit society who represent all facets of the publishing and writing community.
I’m here today to talk about my latest picture book Sir Simon: Super Scarer and fill you in on some haunted trivia!
For those of you in the dark and unaware of what this book is about, here is a fancy lil’ write-up to fill you in:
Meet Sir Simon, Super Scarer. He’s a professional ghost who has been transferred to his first house. And just in time! He was getting tired of haunting bus stops and forests and potatoes. And to top it off, this house is occupied by an old lady— they’re the easiest to haunt!
But things don’t go as planned when it turns out a KID comes with this old lady. Chester spots Simon immediately and peppers him with questions. Simon is exasperated. . . until he realizes he can trick Chester into doing his ghost chores. Spooky sounds, footsteps in the attic, creaks on the stairs— these things don’t happen on their own, you know!
After a long night of haunting, it seems that maybe Chester isn’t cut out to be a ghost, so Simon decides to help with Chester’s human chores. Turns out Simon isn’t cut out for human chores either.
But maybe they’re both cut out to be friends . . .
Now that you’re up to speed:
In many of my books, I love sneaking in little details that most readers miss on their first read. As a kid, I always loved finding little details in books, and now, as a pseudo-adult, I have just as much fun drawing in my own.
Since Sir Simon is a ghost story, I felt this would be the perfect opportunity to sneak in my love of classic scary movies in the form of hidden Easter eggs.
Within the pages of Sir Simon: Super Scarer there are over 50 little hidden Easter eggs referencing all kinds of classic scary movies! Friday the 13th, Halloween, The Exorcist, Beetlejuice, The Shining… If you can think of a classic, there’s a fairly good chance it’s somewhere in the book.
For any of you taken aback and thinking: “Cale! You monster! How dareth you put these frightening films in a children’s book?! Have thou gone mad!? To answer yee olde English question, rest assured that all these references are so slight that most kids, and adults alike, will never notice them, nor know what they are referencing.
In this post I am going to point out 10 such Easter eggs, and then leave the rest for you to hunt out yourselves.
Time to double-check your house is secured from zombie invasion, restock your anti-vampire garlic, and grab some popcorn, ’cause here we go!
#1 Sweater on Elm Street
You may notice Chester’s finely striped sweater bears a striking resemblance to a certain fella who likes to hang out on Elm street.
(Nightmare on Elm Street)
#2 We’re gonna need a bigger boat
Simon’s haunted many a things in his past! He once haunted a boat with a Quint-essential captain.
(Quint from Jaws)
#3 Only Simon floats down here.
In my opinion any clown costume is too scary, but when it’s Pennywise’s duds, no wonder Simon is not a fan.
(Pennywise from IT)
#4 TV Reception from another dimension
A relic of TV past! The TV fuzz may not be seen as much these days in entertainment viewing, but once upon a time it was common place to not only see it, but wonder if you’ll start hearing a voice speak through it.
#5 Amityville, population Simon
I wanted to base the design of Simon’s house on something, and always loved the eerie, iconic windows of this haunted house.
#6 The Pumpkin King
Among various paintings and portraits, you may spot Halloween’s top haunter and his seamstress companion.
(The Nightmare before Christmas)
#7 Slimer-y Cross stitch
Who are you gonna call? Well if you want a rad cross stitch of everyone’s favourite hungry green ghost, you better call Simon.
(Slimer from Ghostbusters)
#8 Big wheeling, forever, and ever, and ever.
It’s a proven fact that there is no better vehicle to escape two terrifying identical twins than a Big Wheel.
#9 Feed me, Simon
Grandma has all sorts of plants in her sewing room. This particular plant is always hungry…
(Audrey 2 from Little Shop of Horrors)
#10 Ghost Melody
What’s a ghost book without a Ghost reference!? Now while we don’t get to see Simon or Chester make beautiful pottery in this story, I’m sure in the film adaptation we’ll have our own Righteous Brothers scene.
A bonus *Eleven*
Leggo my Eggo!
Well that’s it for me, folks! I hope you enjoyed reading my guest post and seeing some of the spooky secrets hidden within Sir Simon: Super Scarer!
If you have a chance, please check out Sir Simon and be sure to let me know what you think! Don’t forget to give a little extra look at details.