Holiday Spotlight: Holiday House

Here at Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers, we’re lucky to work with so many different lists. This holiday season, we’ll be highlighting each one with a dedicated post to help you find the perfect gift (or your next read). Today’s post is all about Holiday House.

Bear Goes Sugaring
By Maxwell Eaton, III
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823444489 | Neal Porter Books
Did you know that it takes forty gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup? “How many pancakes can I eat with that gallon?” wonders Dog. Every step of the process of making maple syrup is covered in this sweet (but never saccharine) informational picture book by Maxwell Eaton III, the creator of the popular Truth About series. It begins with Bear assembling the tools she’ll need for the project, continues with a discussion of the types of maples found in the area and why sugar maples are best for tapping, then on to drilling, tapping, evaporation and at the end of the process, real maple syrup and best of all, PANCAKES! Along the way there are hilarious asides from increasingly ravenous Dog and Squirrel, making this a book as funny as it is informative.

Hello Neighbor! The Kind and Caring World of Mister Rogers
By Matthew Cordell
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823446186 | Neal Porter Books
Kindness, caring, and reliance on our neighbors are more important now than ever before. We all need more Mister Rogers in our lives. Lively, colorful illustrations explore Fred Rogers’ early life and the events that led him to create his enduring show. Exclusively published archival photographs, provided by Fred Rogers Productions, offer a behind-the-scenes look at this historic show and the people whose hard work made it possible. A brief biography of Mister Rogers and a history of the show is included, as well as a note from author-illustrator Matt Cordell about his inspiration and longtime admiration for Fred Rogers and Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.

I Talk Like a River
By Jordan Scott
Illustrated by Sydney Smith
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823445592 | Neal Porter Books
When a boy who stutters feels isolated, alone, and incapable of communicating in the way he’d like, it takes a kindly father and a walk by the river to help him find his voice. Compassionate parents everywhere will instantly recognize a father’s ability to reconnect a child with the world around him. Poet Jordan Scott writes movingly in this powerful and ultimately uplifting book, based on his own experience, and masterfully illustrated by Greenaway Medalist Sydney Smith. A book for any child who feels lost, lonely, or unable to fit in.

Middle School Bites
By Steven Banks
Illustrated by Mark Fearing
304 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823445431 | Holiday House
Thanks to a series of unfortunate bites, eleven-year-old Tom is a triple threat: he’s a Vam-Wolf-Zom. And just in time for the first day of middle school. So much for his Invisible Tom Plan. He never thought to make a What If I Turn Into A Vampire Werewolf Zombie Plan. Maybe it’s time for a Run Away and Live Somewhere Else Plan? With the help of his irrepressible best friend, Zeke, Tom tries to accept his future. Zeke thinks being a Vam-Wolf-Zom sounds EXCELLENT! (Zeke thinks everything sounds EXCELLENT!) At least he’ll be able to stand up to the sixth-grade bully. The question is will the rest of Hamilton Middle School accept the Vam-Wolf-Zom, too? Tom’s toothsome saga is illustrated with clever, cartoon-style art on every spread.

No Ordinary Thing
By G. Z. Schmidt
240 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823444229 | Holiday House
It’s 1999 and Adam doesn’t mind living at his uncle’s bakery, the Biscuit Basket, on the Lower East Side in New York City. The warm, delicious smells of freshly baked breads and chocolate croissants make every day feel cozy, even if Adam doesn’t have many friends and he misses his long dead parents very much. When a mysterious but cheerful customer shows Adam a snow globe and says that adventures await him, it’s too strange to be true. But days later, an unbelievable, incredible thing happens. Adam finds a similar looking snow globe and immediately travels back in time, first to Times Square in 1935, then a candle factory fire in 1967. But how are these moments related? What do they have to do with his parents’ death? And why is a tall man with long eyebrows and a thin mustache following Adam’s every move?

The Bitterwine Oath
By Hannah West
320 Pages | Ages 14+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823445479 | Holiday House
San Solano, Texas, is a quaint town known for its charm, hospitality, and history of murder. Twice now, twelve men have been brutally killed, and no one knows who did it. A shadowy witch? A copycat killer? Or a man-hating murderess? Eighteen-year-old Natalie Colter is sure that the rumors about her great-great-grandmother’s cult of wronged women are just gossip, but that doesn’t stop the true-crime writers and dark tourism bloggers from capitalizing on the town’s reputation. It’s an urban legend that’s hard to ignore, and it gets harder when Nat learns that the sisterhood is real. And magical. And they want her to join. But everything becomes more urgent when people start getting “marked” as new victims–including Levi Langford, the boy whose kiss haunted Nat for a year. With Levi in danger, doing nothing would be harder than fighting back. Nat knows that no one is safe. Can she and the sisterhood stop the true evil from claiming their town?

The Eight Knights of Hanukkah
By Leslie Kimmelman
Illustrated by Galia Bernstein
48 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823439584 | Holiday House
It’s the last night of Hanukkah and everyone is doing their part for the big celebration, but a dragon called Dreadful has other ideas. He roams the countryside, interrupting the party preparations. Lady Sadie must call upon the Eight Knights of Hanukkah to perform deeds of awesome kindness and stupendous bravery and put an end to the dragon’s shenanigans. When Dreadful eats all the special donuts the baker made, Sir Lily helps the baker make more sufganiyot. Sir Alex makes a young lad a new dreidel after Dreadful scorched his original one. And on the Knights go – but when they finally catch up to Dreadful, a funny surprise awaits them!

The Littlest Voyageur
By Margi Preus
Illustrated by Cheryl Pilgrim
176 Pages | Ages 7-10 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823442478 | Margaret Ferguson Books
It is 1792 and unbeknownst to a group of voyageurs traveling from Montreal to Grand Portage, an intrepid squirrel, Jean Pierre Petit Le Rouge, sneaks onto their canoe. Le Rouge is soon discovered because he can’t contain his excitement–mon dieu he is so enthusiastic. The smells! The vistas! The comradery! The voyageurs are not particularly happy to have him, especially because Le Rouge rides, but he does not paddle. He eats, but he does not cook. He doesn’t even carry anything on portages–sometimes it is he who has to be carried. He also has a terrible singing voice. What kind of voyageur is that? When they finally arrive at the trading post Le Rouge is in for a terrible shock–the voyageurs have traveled all those miles to collect beaver pelts. With the help of Monique, a smart and sweet flying squirrel, Le Rouge organizes his fur-bearing friends of the forest to ambush the men and try and convince them to quit being voyageurs.

The Postman from Space
By Guillaume Perreault
144 Pages | Ages 10+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823445196 | Holiday House
Bob is a dedicated and deadpan mail carrier who remains unfazed when assigned a new postal route that takes his space ship to surprising planets. One is shaped like a bone and full of cosmic dogs who can’t wait to get a tasty bite out of a postman. The colorful art features extraterrestrials, from a giant blue farmer to a small cactus-like creature, and cinematic views of awe-inspiring alien landscapes. Bob’s adventures to make his five deliveries are as harrowing as they are hilarious in this award-winning graphic novel, perfect for fans of Jeff Smith’s Bone comics.

Your Place in the Universe
By Jason Chin
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823446230 | Neal Porter Books
Most eight-year-olds are about five times as tall as this book . . . but only half as tall as an ostrich, which is half as tall as a giraffe . . . twenty times smaller than a California Redwood! How do they compare to the tallest buildings? To Mt. Everest? To stars, galaxy clusters, and . . . the universe? Jason Chin, the award-winning author and illustrator of Grand Canyon has once again found a way to make a complex subject–size, scale and almost unimaginable distance–accessible and understandable to readers of all ages. Meticulously researched and featuring the highly detailed artwork for which he is renowned, this is How Much ia Million for the new millenium, sure to be an immediate hit with kids looking for an engaging way to delve into perspective, astronomy, and astrophysics. Curious readers will love the extensive supplementary material included in the back of the back of the book.

Deck the Halls with These Holiday Books

The holidays are coming! Whether you’re looking for a gift to celebrate the holidays or just because, we have a cool list of winter-themed books to choose from – make sure you pick them up from your favourite bookstore!

Ages 0-3

The Wheels on the Bus at Christmas
By Sarah Kieley
24 Pages | Ages 0-3 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593174852 | Doubleday BFYR
Families will love creating a new Christmas tradition as they sing along to this joyful, boistrous, holiday version of the classic song “The Wheels on the Bus”. With a gaggle of adorable Christmas passengers, including reindeer, elves, snowmen, Christmas cookies, and of course Santa himself as the bus driver, this bright and festive book is sure to have children eager to read it (and sing it!) again and again. Peek-through “windows” in the front cover give kids a sneak glimpse of the characters they’ll find inside.

Ages 2-5

Christmas in the Country
By Barbara Collyer and John R. Foley
Illustrated by Retta Worcester
24 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593119952 | Golden Books
Betty and Bob are excited to spend Christmas in the Country with their grandparents in this classic Little Golden Book, originally published in 1950. From chopping down a Christmas tree to stringing cranberries and singing carols, this is a holiday to cherish. The colorful illustrations by Walt Disney animator Retta Worcester will delight children ages 2 to 5 as well as their parents and grandparents! Makes a great stocking stuffer.

Christmas is Joy
By Emma Dodd
24 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536215458 | Templar
An enchanting celebration of the true meaning of Christmas, featuring two adorable reindeer.
Christmas is love that lasts all year.
It’s all of us, together, here.
Christmas is peace, stars twinkling above,
a night of sweet dreams and a heart full of love.

Emma Dodd’s joyful celebration of this wonderful time of year, as seen through the eyes of two reindeer, is a pure delight.

Dinosaur Christmas!
By Penny Dale
32 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536214499 | Nosy Crow
Our favorite dinosaurs are back, and this time they must save Santa Claus from a snowstorm! Join them as they plow the road, whizz down a mountain on snowmobiles, zoom through the icy water on a hovercraft, and much more! But where is Santa? And will they manage to dig out his sleigh in time for Christmas day?

Mouse’s Night Before Christmas
By Tracey Corderoy
Illustrated by Sarah Massini
32 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536214406 | Nosy Crow
It’s Christmas Eve, and everyone is fast asleep except for a lonely mouse that lives in the grandfather clock. When Santa arrives, lost in a blizzard and called by Mouse’s wish, it’s Mouse who is there to show Santa the way. Together they embark on a magical sleigh ride, delivering presents all around town. But the best present of all is for Mouse: his wish to make a new friend to share Christmas Day with has finally come true.

We Wish You a Merry Christmas: Sing Along with Me!
Illustrated by Yu-Hsuan Huang
8 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Board Book
ISBN 9781536216455 | Nosy Crow
Share the holiday song with this interactive board book edition that includes five slider mechanisms. A QR code inside links to both instrumental and vocal versions of the festive song. Simply scan the code to listen and sing along – merry Christmas!

Ages 3-7

A Polar Bear in the Snow
By Mac Barnett
Illustrated by Shawn Harris
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536203967 | Candlewick Press
Follow a magnificent polar bear through a fantastic world of snow and shockingly blue sea. Over the ice, through the water, past Arctic animals and even a human . . . where is he going? What does he want? Acclaimed author Mac Barnett’s narration deftly balances suspense and emotion, as well as poignant, subtle themes, compelling us to follow the bear with each page turn. Artist Shawn Harris’s striking torn-paper illustrations layer white-on-white hues, with bolts of blue and an interplay of shadow and light, for a gorgeous view of a stark yet beautiful landscape. Simple and thought-provoking, illuminating and intriguing, this engaging picture book will have readers pondering the answer to its final question long after the polar bear has continued on his way.

A Very Quacky Christmas
By Frances Watt
Illustrated by Ann James
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593173770 | Doubleday BFYR
“We wish you a quacky Christmas!” Samantha Duck is getting ready for Christmas. “I’m going to give presents to animals all over the world!” But tortoise pal Sebastian is not so sure: “Christmas is not for animals!” With the help of her farmyard friends, who all give something to help make and deliver the presents, this determined duck sets out to prove that Christmas is for EVERYONE – and to make sure animals all around the world have a very quacky Christmas. Families will enjoy snuggling up to read this warm and friend-filled Christmas tale of giving and sharing. It’s a joyous reminder that with a bit of faith and the love of those around you, anything is possible. . . .

Christmas is Every Day
By Isabel Otter
Illustrated by Alicia Más
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593178966 | Rodale Kids
Through adorably-illustrated vignettes, this gifty, light-hearted picture book captures and celebrates the true meaning of Christmas and encourages readers to embrace the spirit of Christmas every day! With an array of family structures and communities enjoying all the kind moments that make Christmas special throughout the year, Christmas is Every Day shares the message that generosity, hope, kindness, and community are relevant all year round.

Glory on Ice: A Vampire Hockey Story
By Maureen Fergus
Illustrated by Mark Fearing
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781524714512 | Knopf BFYR
After centuries alone in his old castle, Vlad is ready to try something new. When he hears the local hockey team gushing about how they’ll crush and destroy their opponents in the next game, he knows he’s found the activity for him! Vlad immediately gives the game his all, but he soon realizes that super-human powers don’t mean much in hockey without a mastery of the basics. After weeks of practice, he’s finally ready for the big game . . . but can a hundreds-of-years-old vampire really learn new tricks? This hilarious, energetic picture book encourages teamwork, perseverance, and a love of hockey that will last a lifetime, even for an immortal being.

If Winter Comes, Tell It I’m Not Here
By Simona Ciraolo
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536215304 | Candlewick Press
Nothing is better than summer, with its joys of swimming every day and eating ice cream. One little boy’s older sister tells him he’d better make the most of it, because summer is going to end soon. When winter comes, she assures him, it will be cold and dark, and the icy rain will turn to snow. They’ll be stuck on the sofa for days and won’t even dream of eating ice cream. . . . Simona Ciraolo’s expressive illustrations belie the bleak forecast with images of glowing autumn leaves, cozy couch snuggles, wintry play, and sweet desserts. A celebration of the changing of the seasons, this inviting tale shows how much fun can be found around every sunny – or snowy – corner.

Little Unicorn’s Christmas
By Rhiannon Fielding
Illustrated by Chris Chatterton
32 Pages | Ages 3-6 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780241484708 | Ladybird
It’s Christmas Eve, and Twinkle has ten minutes before she has to go to sleep. But when Santa needs her help, Twinkle wonders if she could help save Christmas and still get to bed on time? Written for bedtime, this story follows Twinkle the Unicorn as she finds herself on a Christmas-themed nighttime adventure. With a ten-minute countdown at the heart of this enchanting story, little ones will love following Twinkle on a brand new adventure.

Mistletoe: A Christmas Story
By Tad Hills
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593174425 | Schwartz & Wade
Mistletoe loves everything about Christmas – the twinkling lights, the cookies for Santa, and, most of all, the gently falling snow. Her best friend, Norwell, is an elephant who likes sitting by the fire and watching the snow from the comfort of his cozy house. On one particularly snowy walk, Mistletoe stops to appreciate the beauty and peace of a snow-covered world. She knows Norwell would love it too… if he weren’t so afraid of the cold. Then she has an idea! Mistletoe knits from morning to night – when she’s reading, when she’s baking, and even in the bath (which isn’t easy). By the time Christmas morning arrives, she puts down her knitting needles. Her gift for Norwell is ready – and it is perfect.

Pick a Pine Tree
By Patricia Toht
Illustrated by Jarvis
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536216028 | Candlewick Press
Part of the magic of the Christmas season stems from the traditions that families and friends take part in every year: hanging up stockings; putting lights in the windows; and, one of the most important of all, picking out and taking home the Christmas tree. With style and warmth, debut author Patricia Toht and Jarvis, the author-illustrator of Alan’s Big, Scary Teeth, evoke all the rituals of decorating the tree – digging out boxes jam-packed with ornaments and tree trimmings, stringing tinsel, and, at long last, turning on those twinkling lights. Joyously drawn and rhythmically written, this celebration of family, friends, and the holiday season is as merry as the tradition it depicts.

Snow FallsSnow Falls
By Kate Gardner
Illustrated by Brandon James Scott
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781101919217 | Tundra Books
Snow softens, snow tricks, snow tracks, snow glows and snow snows and snows and snows, transforming a small village into a winter wonderland. A girl and her dog set out and make the most of every snow-filled moment: sledding, building snowmen and snowforts, making snowangels (and snowdogs), and drinking cocoa by a cozy fire as the snow continues to fall. This luminous and lively picture book celebrates the beauty, magic and excitement of snow with simple, easy-to-read text, comprised almost solely of verbs and action words, and gorgeous art that highlights the amazing colors of a snowy day. As inviting as the first snowfall, but so much warmer, Snow Falls encourages little people and big people to go outside and enjoy the snow . . . before it goes!

When Santa Was a Baby
By Linda Bailey
Illustrated by Geneviève Godbout
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781770495562 | Tundra Books
Santa’s parents think their little one is absolutely wonderful, even though he has a booming voice instead of a baby’s gurgle, loves to stand in front of the refrigerator, gives his birthday presents away, trains his hamsters to pull a matchbox sleigh . . . and has an unusual interest in chimneys. The adorably funny portrait of an oddball kid who fulfills his destiny – and two very proud parents.

Ages 4-8

Bear Goes Sugaring
By Maxwell Eaton, III
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823444489 | Neal Porter Books
Did you know that it takes forty gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup? “How many pancakes can I eat with that gallon?” wonders Dog. Every step of the process of making maple syrup is covered in this sweet (but never saccharine) informational picture book by Maxwell Eaton III, the creator of the popular “Truth About” series. It begins with Bear assembling the tools she’ll need for the project, continues with a discussion of the types of maples found in the area and why sugar maples are best for tapping, then on to drilling, tapping, evaporation and at the end of the process, real maple syrup and best of all, PANCAKES! Along the way there are hilarious asides from increasingly ravenous Dog and Squirrel, making this a book as funny as it is informative.

Bobby Orr and the Hand-me-down Skates
By Kara Koostra and Bobby Orr
Illustrated by Jennifer Phelan
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780735265325 | Tundra Books
Bobby eats, sleeps and breathes hockey. So, with his birthday is coming up, he only wants one thing: new skates. He’s seen the exact pair he wants in the shop window: sparkling blades, shiny leather, clean new laces tied in perfect bows. But when Bobby opens his gift, he’s dismayed to find hand-me-down skates: scuffed leather, nicked blades, floppy laces. Once Bobby breaks them in, though, he and the hand-me-down skates become inseparable, and he can’t imagine life without them . . . until the brand-new skates come into his life. How can he leave his hand-me-down skates behind? Log Driver’s Waltz illustrator Jennifer Phelan brings this classic story to life with timeless, gorgeous art, and Kara Kootsra’s words evoke the joy and dedication that Bobby Orr brought to his favorite sport.

Cozy
By Jan Brett
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593109793 | Putnam BFYR
Cozy is the softest musk ox in Alaska, with the warmest fur you ever did feel. When a storm hits while he’s separated from his family, he starts to feel lonely – but not for long. As the snow piles up, animals start to notice just how warm and cozy Cozy really is! One mama lemming has a bright idea . . . maybe the best place to spend the winter is under Cozy’s fur! As more and more animals burrow in, Cozy adds to the house rules: quiet voices, gentle thumping, claws to yourself, no biting, and no pouncing. That seems easy enough . . . until the lemmings, snowshoe hare, snowy owl, arctic fox, and wolverine begin to bicker. Luckily, signs of spring soon appear, and that means Cozy can find his herd and his new friends can head to their summer homes. But not before promising to get cozy with Cozy next year!

Llama Llama Holiday Helper
By Anna Dewdney
Illustrated by JJ Harrison 
32 Pages | Ages 4-6 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593222591 | Penguin Young Readers Licenses
In this beautiful picture book, Llama Llama and Mama Llama are just about done with getting ready for the holidays. So Llama decides to help out his friends – hanging wreaths, decorating trees, and baking cookies. Join Llama, Gilroy, Nelly, Euclid, and Luna as they celebrate their favorite time of year. Celebrate the holidays with Llama Llama and all his friends in this beautifully illustrated picture book, based on the hit animated Netflix series!

Once Upon a Winter Day
By Liza Woodruff
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823440993 | Margaret Ferguson Books
Milo wants a story, but his mom is too busy to entertain him. Instead, she encourages him to go out and play in the snow. At first, Milo is disappointed – he doesn’t want to play outside, he wants a story. But when he starts to follow a trail of mouse-prints, he discovers signs of activity all around, prompting him to ask, “What happened here?” Before long, he’s using his imagination – depicted in lush wordless spreads that capture the vividness of Milo’s fantasies – to fill in the gaps. By the time Milo comes home, he’s the one with stories to tell.

Snow is Fun
By Steve Henry
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823446001  | Holiday House
Snow is fun, and snow is quiet – but snow is heavy, too. A tiny bird is perched upon a branch that begins to strain under the weight of a heavy snowfall. When the branch breaks, the bird falls into the deep, deep snow. His friends – a bunny, two mice, a squirrel, and an owl – try to rescue him. Luckily, little bird can fly! He can help himself. The friends rejoice. Snow is fun – and snow is especially fun with friends.

Ten Ways to Hear Snow
By Cathy Camper
Illustrated by Kenard Pak
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780399186332 | Kokila
One winter morning, Lina wakes up to silence. It’s the sound of snow – the kind that looks soft and glows bright in the winter sun. But as she walks to her grandmother’s house to help make the family recipe for warak enab, she continues to listen. As Lina walks past snowmen and across icy sidewalks, she discovers ten ways to pay attention to what might have otherwise gone unnoticed. With stunning illustrations by Kenard Pak and thoughtful representation of a modern Arab American family from Cathy Camper, Ten Ways to Hear Snow is a layered exploration of mindfulness, empathy, and what we realize when the world gets quiet.

the-day-santa-stopped-believing-in-haroldThe Day Santa Stopped Believing in Harold
By Maureen Fergus
Illustrated by Cale Atkinson
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Paperback
ISBN 9780735268708 | Tundra Books
Santa has a problem. This kid? Harold? Santa doesn’t think he’s real. He WANTS to believe in Harold – after all, Harold is one of the most magical parts of Christmas. Getting Harold’s letters, eating the cookies he leaves out, feeding his carrots to the reindeer . . . what would Christmas be without that? But Santa’s just not sure. Some of his friends are telling him they think Harold’s not real. And the Harold that sat on his knee last Christmas looked AWFULLY different. Santa comes up with a plan to find out once and for all if Harold really exists . . . with hilarious consequences.

The Eight Knights of Hanukkah
By Leslie Kimmelman
Illustrated by Galia Bernstein
48 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823439584 | Holiday House
It’s the last night of Hanukkah and everyone is doing their part for the big celebration, but a dragon called Dreadful has other ideas. He roams the countryside, interrupting the party preparations. Lady Sadie must call upon the Eight Knights of Hanukkah to perform deeds of awesome kindness and stupendous bravery and put an end to the dragon’s shenanigans. When Dreadful eats all the special donuts the baker made, Sir Lily helps the baker make more sufganiyot. Sir Alex makes a young lad a new dreidel after Dreadful scorched his original one. And on the Knights go – but when they finally catch up to Dreadful, a funny surprise awaits them!

The Hanukkah Magic of Nate Gadol
By Arthur A. Levine
Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes
40 Pages | Ages 5-8  | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763697419 | Candlewick Press
Nate Gadol is a great big spirit with eyes as shiny as golden coins and a smile that is lantern bright. He can make anything last as long as it is needed, like a tiny bit of oil that must stretch for eight nights, a flower that needs to stay fresh to cheer up someone ailing, or a small lump of chocolate that grows to allow the Glasers to treat their children over the holiday and, during a harsh winter when medicine is needed more than sweets, spurs them to share what little they have with the O’Malleys. In this charming holiday hybrid story, well-known children’s author and editor Arthur A. Levine pairs with award-winning illustrator Kevin Hawkes to offer a mythical, magical take on the way Jewish families came to give and receive gifts over Hanukkah, just as their Christian neighbors do at Christmas, thanks to a loving spirit named Nate Gadol working behind the scenes – together with a certain jolly old soul.

The Square Root of Possible: A Jingle Jangle Story
By Lyn Sisson-Talbert and David E. Talbert
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593203835 | Razorbill
A heartwarming picture book story based on the song “The Square Root of Possible” from the Netflix holiday film Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey! A holiday tale set in the snow-covered town of Cobbleton, Jingle Jangle follows eccentric toymaker Jeronicus Jangle (Academy Award winner Forest Whitaker) whose fanciful inventions burst with whimsy and wonder. But when a betrayal by a former protégé (Keegan-Michael Key) leaves Jeronicus withdrawn and down on his luck, it’s up to his bright and adventurous granddaughter, Journey (newcomer Madalen Mills) – and a singularly magical invention – to save the day. From the imagination of writer/director David E. Talbert and featuring original music by John Legend, Philip Lawrence, and Davy Nathan, Jingle Jangle reminds you that anything is possible. . . if you believe.

Ages 6-9

Happy Narwhalidays
By Ben Clanton
76 Pages | Ages 6-9 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780735262515 | Tundra Books
Dive into three new stories about Narwhal’s favorite time of the year! It’s the festive season in the world wide waters, and Narwhal is looking forward to cozying up with a good book, singing and partying with pod pals and enjoying some warm waffle pudding. But most of all Narwhal is excited about the arrival of the Merry Mermicorn! According to Narwhal, she’s part mermaid, part unicorn and completely mer-aculous! Jelly is of course skeptical about the existence of the “Mira-Miny-What-A Corn” . . . even when he receives a mysterious present. It must be from Narwhal. Now Jelly has to get the perfect gift, but finding a present for someone as unique as Narwhal is no easy feat, even when you have six tentacles. How will Jelly ever come up with a whaley great gift for a best pal who spreads cheer all through the year?

Ages 8-12

Jingle Jangle: The Invention of Jeronicus Jangle
By Lyn Sisson-Talbert and David E. Talbert
176 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Paperback
ISBN 9780593203804 | Razorbill
A delightful middle grade story based on the Netflix holiday film Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey! A holiday tale set in the snow-covered town of Cobbleton, Jingle Jangle follows eccentric toymaker Jeronicus Jangle (Academy Award winner Forest Whitaker) whose fanciful inventions burst with whimsy and wonder. But when a betrayal by a former protégé (Keegan-Michael Key) leaves Jeronicus withdrawn and down on his luck, it’s up to his bright and adventurous granddaughter, Journey (newcomer Madalen Mills) – and a singularly magical invention – to save the day. From the imagination of writer/director David E. Talbert and producer Lyn Sisson-Talbert, featuring original music by John Legend, Philip Lawrence, Davy Nathan, and Michael Diskint. Jingle Jangle reminds you that anything is possible. . . if you believe.

Holiday Spotlight: Candlewick Press

Here at Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers, we’re lucky to work with so many different lists. This holiday season, we’ll be highlighting each one with a dedicated post to help you find the perfect gift (or your next read). Today’s post spotlights Candlewick Press.

A Polar Bear in the Snow
By Mac Barnett
Illustrated by Shawn Harris
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536203967 | Candlewick Press
Follow a magnificent polar bear through a fantastic world of snow and shockingly blue sea. Over the ice, through the water, past Arctic animals and even a human . . . where is he going? What does he want? Acclaimed author Mac Barnett’s narration deftly balances suspense and emotion, as well as poignant, subtle themes, compelling us to follow the bear with each page turn. Artist Shawn Harris’s striking torn-paper illustrations layer white-on-white hues, with bolts of blue and an interplay of shadow and light, for a gorgeous view of a stark yet beautiful landscape. Simple and thought-provoking, illuminating and intriguing, this engaging picture book will have readers pondering the answer to its final question long after the polar bear has continued on his way.

Guess How Much I Love You?
By Sam McBratney
Illustrated by Anita Jeram
24 Pages | Ages 0-3 | Board
ISBN 9781536210637 | Candlewick Press
Celebrate twenty-five years of love right up to the moon and back! A new board-book edition is perfect for little hands. How much does Little Nutbrown Hare love his daddy? And how much does Big Nutbrown Hare love him back? The cherished tale of boundless affection is ready for boundless sharing in a durable board-book edition for the younger set.

In the Half Room
By Carson Ellis
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536214567 | Candlewick Press
The half room is full of half things. A half chair, a half cat, even half shoes — all just as nice as whole things. When half a knock comes on half a door, who in the world could it be? With inventive flair, Caldecott Honor winner Carson Ellis explores halves and wholes in an ingenious and thought-provoking picture book. Ink and gouache illustrations featuring wry detail and velvety textures conjure a dreamlike mood while leaving space for imagining. A celebration of the surreal and the serendipitous and the beauty of the two together, this brilliant picture book will have readers seeing halves with whole new eyes.

Julián at the Wedding
By Jessica Love
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536212389 | Candlewick Press
Julián and his abuela are going to a wedding. Better yet, Julián is in the wedding. Weddings have flowers and kissing and dancing and cake. And this wedding also has a new friend named Marisol. It’s not long before Julián and Marisol set off for some magic and mischief of their own, and when things take an unexpected turn, the pair learns that everything is easier with a good friend by your side. Jessica Love returns with a joyful story of friendship and individuality in this radiant follow-up to Julián Is a Mermaid.

Love is Powerful
By Heather Dean Brewer
Illustrated by LeUyen Pham
32 Pages | Ages 5-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536201994 | Candlewick Press
Mari is getting ready to make a sign with crayon as the streets below her fill up with people. “What are we making, Mama?” she asks. “A message for the world,” Mama says. “How will the whole world hear?” Mari wonders. “They’ll hear,” says Mama, “because love is powerful.” Inspired by a girl who participated in the January 2017 Women’s March in New York City, Heather Dean Brewer’s simple and uplifting story, delightfully illustrated by LeUyen Pham, is a reminder of what young people can do to promote change and equality at a time when our country is divided by politics, race, gender, and religion.

Maps: Deluxe Edition
By Aleksandra Mizielinska
Illustrated by Daniel Mizielinski
160 Pages | Ages 10+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763695569 | Big Picture Press
Explore the world anew with this lavish extended edition from the incomparable Mizielinskis. This book features new and updated material on every spread and twenty-four entirely new maps. In addition to geographic features like borders and cities, this volume features places of historical and cultural interest, eminent personalities, cultural events, and iconic animals, allowing you to explore the globe without leaving your couch.

The Hanukkah Magic of Nate Gadol
By Arthur A. Levine
Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes
40 Pages | Ages 5-8  | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763697419 | Candlewick Press
Nate Gadol is a great big spirit with eyes as shiny as golden coins and a smile that is lantern bright. He can make anything last as long as it is needed, like a tiny bit of oil that must stretch for eight nights, a flower that needs to stay fresh to cheer up someone ailing, or a small lump of chocolate that grows to allow the Glasers to treat their children over the holiday and, during a harsh winter when medicine is needed more than sweets, spurs them to share what little they have with the O’Malleys. In this charming holiday hybrid story, well-known children’s author and editor Arthur A. Levine pairs with award-winning illustrator Kevin Hawkes to offer a mythical, magical take on the way Jewish families came to give and receive gifts over Hanukkah, just as their Christian neighbors do at Christmas, thanks to a loving spirit named Nate Gadol working behind the scenes — together with a certain jolly old soul.

The Princess in Black and the Giant Problem
By Shannon and Dean Hale
Illustrated by LeUyen Pham
96 Pages | Ages 5-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536202229 | Candlewick Press
The Princess in Black is ready for her snowy playdate with the Goat Avenger and the Princess in Blankets. It’s a perfect day to build snow monsters and battle them for practice. But just when they’re about to wage battle, a huge foot smashes their snow monster. “SQUASHY!” It’s a giant, and it’s smashing everything in its path! The giant is too strong for the three friends, so the Princess in Blankets has an idea: it’s time to light the Sparkle Signal and summon help. With a rising crescendo of a plot and a delightfully surprising ending, the latest adventure in the New York Times best-selling series features all the Princess in Black’s friends as heroes for the first time.

The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel
By Sheela Chari
304 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536209563 | Walker Books
Mars Patel’s friend Aurora has disappeared! His teachers are clueless. His mom is stressed out about her jobs. But Mars refuses to give up — after all, his own dad disappeared when Mars was a toddler, before he and Ma moved to Puget Sound from India. Luckily, Mars has a group of loyal friends eager to help — smart Toothpick, strong and stylish JP, and maybe-telepathic Caddie. The clues seem to point toward eccentric tech genius (and Mars’s hero) Oliver Pruitt, whose popular podcast now seems to be commenting on their quest! But when the friends investigate Pruitt’s mysterious, elite school, nothing is as it seems — and anyone could be deceiving them. Slick science, corporate conspiracies, and an endearingly nerdy protagonist make this first book in the series a fresh, exciting sci-fi adventure based on a Peabody Award-winning podcast.

Will You Be My Friend?
By Sam McBratney
Illustrated by Anita Jeram
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536217476 | Candlewick Press
Little Nutbrown Hare is out exploring on his own. Off he hops along the path and through the grass until he reaches Cloudy Mountain, where something extraordinary happens: he discovers a new friend! Now the fun can really begin. Twenty-five years after we met the Nutbrown Hares, this enchanting new tale about friendship is bound to capture the hearts of Guess How Much I Love You fans — and everyone else — the world over.