A Very Tundra Christmas

With Christmas fast approaching, some of you may be scrambling for last minute gifts. Have no fear, we’ve got something for everyone on your list – even if you don’t celebrate Christmas!

Finalists for the 2015 Governor General’s Literary Awards

Each year, the Canada Council for the Arts honours the best books in Canadian literature with the Governor General’s Literary Awards. This year, we have four finalists in Children’s Literature, two in text and two in illustrations. Huge congratulations to our authors and illustrators!

Children’s Literature – Text

Audrey-cowAudrey (cow)
Written by Dan Bar-el
Illustrated by Tatjana Mai-Wyss
Hardcover | 240 Pages | Ages 7-10
ISBN: 978-1-77049-602-6
eBook: 978-1-77049-604-0
Animal Farm meets The Great Escape…. The result is purely delightful, as are Tatjana Mai-Wyss’s appropriately vintage-looking spot illustrations. The short first-person passages help move the story along, ending with a comedy-of-errors that culminates in Audrey happily living out her days at an animal sanctuary. Bar-el manages to gently and thoughtfully introduce kids to the concept of the abattoir while also underscoring that a farm’s very purpose is producing food. At its heart, Audrey (cow) encourages kids to think even as it entertains – the mark of wonderful children’s literature.” – Starred Review, Quill & Quire

We Are All Made of MoleculesWe Are All Made of Molecules
Written by Susin Nielsen
Hardcover | 256 Pages | Ages 12 and up
ISBN: 978-1-77049-779-5
eBook: 978-1-77049-781-8
“Drama, humour, poignancy, and suspense are rarely found in such perfect proportions as in Governor General’s Literary Award–winner Susin Nielsen’s new novel about a teen odd couple forced together in a blended family situation…We Are All Made of Molecules is chockablock with timely and weighty issues, yet it feels feather-light thanks in large part to some truly funny writing. Teens will be so busy turning pages they won’t even realize they’re thinking. This is stellar, top-notch stuff.” – Starred Review, Quill & Quire

Congratulations to the other finalists in this category: Darren Groth for Are You Seeing Me?, Caroline Pignat for The Gospel Truth, and Emil Sher for Young Man with Camera.

Children’s Literature – Illustrated Books

The Good Little BookThe Good Little Book
Written by Kyo Maclear
Illustrated by Marion Arbona
Hardcover | 40 Pages | Ages 5-9
ISBN: 978-1-77049-451-0
“Maclear steers clear of ‘reading is good for you’ and focuses instead on a boy’s affection for a dearly loved object and sorrow at its loss. But with the affection is something more subtle, a celebration of the comfort of rereading, of having a favourite book that’s the only book for you. And Arbona’s art works well at aiding and abetting that play of imagination and feeling. Cockeyed perspectives, vivid colours and comic, surreal scenes show how dynamic, how animated, the love for a favourite story can be. Funny and thoughtful.” – The Toronto Star

Bug in a VacuumBug in a Vacuum
Written by Mélanie Watt
Hardcover | 96 Pages | Ages 5-9
ISBN: 978-1-77049-645-3
“In a story heady and intellectually ambitious enough for a jaded adult, yet suited to a child’s down-to-earth appetites, a wide-eyed fly gets vacuumed up. Trapped, it goes through the five stages of grief … each first depicted by Watt as a funny retro product like bug spray…. There’s a journey, yes, into the light, but it’s a happy ending that may just prompt sheer joy at the simple fact of being alive.” – The New York Times

Congratulations to the other finalists in this category: Andy Jones and Darka Erdelji for Jack, the King of Ashes, JonArno Lawson and Sydney Smith for Sidewalk Flowers, and John Martz for A Cat Named Tim and Other Stories.

Go online to discover the year’s best books and their authors, illustrators and translators, on the new interactive GG website. Follow the conversation on Twitter through @CanadaCouncil and by using the hashtag #GGbooks. Like the GGs on Facebook for all the latest updates.

The winners of the 2015 Governor General Literary Awards will be announced on Wednesday, October 28 at 6:30 am.

2015/2016 Red Cedar Book Award Nominations

We are happy to announce that two of our titles have been nominated for the 2015/2016 Red Cedar Book Award, hosted by B.C. Young Readers’ Choice Awards!

audreyAudrey (cow)
Written by Dan Bar-el
Illustrated by Tatjana Mai-Wyss
Hardcover | 240 Pages | Ages 7-10
ISBN 978-1-77049-602-6
Animal Farm meets The Great Escape…. The back-and-forth among the characters is over the top … but Bar-el pulls it off with great charm. The result is purely delightful, as are Tatjana Mai-Wyss’s appropriately vintage-looking spot illustrations. The short first-person passages help move the story along, ending with a comedy-of-errors that culminates in Audrey happily living out her days at an animal sanctuary. Bar-el manages to gently and thoughtfully introduce kids to the concept of the abattoir while also underscoring that a farm’s very purpose is producing food. At its heart, Audrey (Cow) encourages kids to think even as it entertains – the mark of wonderful children’s literature.” – Starred Review, Quill and Quire

The SwallowThe Swallow: A Ghost Story
Written by Charis Cotter
Hardcover | 320 Pages | Ages 9-12
ISBN 978-1-77049-591-3
“Spooky tension, friendship and compassion permeate this exquisitely plotted middle-grade ghost story. …the story structure weaves its way in and out—riveting and tumbling with tension but never obvious, leaving the readers wondering if anything is really as it seems. …readers will seesaw between chills and snorts of laughter. When Cotter delivers the final twist, it is a denouement that becomes a springboard for greater revelations that lead to even greater reader satisfaction. Middle-grade storytelling at its very best—extraordinary.” – Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews

Congratulations to Dan Bar-el, Tatjana Mai-Wyss, and Charis Cotter! The winner will be announced on May 9th at the Red Cedar Gala in Vancouver.

Authors for Indies Day

authorsforindiesCanadian Authors for Indies Day is happening on Saturday, May 2, 2015, and several of our authors are popping into independent bookstores across the country!

British Columbia:

Edie's Ensembles  We Are All Made of Molecules If You Happen to Have a Dinosaur

Newfoundland:

The Swallow

Nova Scotia:

Frankenstink

Ontario:

Julia Child  Nancy Knows  Millhouse  Best Friends through Eternity Audrey-cow For Those About to Write  The Pocket Mommy

For a full list of participating authors and bookstores, please check out the Authors for Indies website.

AuthorsForIndies-Globe-Apr25-v4

Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards Shortlist

We are very excited to announce that two of our titles have been nominated for the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards! Congratulations to Cybèle Young, Dan Bar-el and Tatjana Mai-Wyss!

Picture Book Category:

Nancy KnowsNancy Knows
Written by Cybèle Young
Hardcover | 40 Pages | Ages 3-7
ISBN: 978-1-77049-482-4
Nancy Knows is a great example of the power and charm of simple storytelling. Young’s prose is clear; each brief sentence is composed of carefully chosen words that inspire readers to take their time and savour the story (a fitting approach for a book about memory). But it is Young’s artwork that elevates the narrative to extraordinary heights…. Young once again works her magic, combining intricately detailed miniature paper sculptures (which represent memories) with soft, pencil-sketched outlines of Nancy and her surroundings. The effect is utterly mesmerizing.” – Starred Review, Quill & Quire

Middle Reader Category:

audreyAudrey (cow)
Written by Dan Bar-el
Illustrated by Tatjana Mai-Wyss
Hardcover | 240 Pages | Ages 7-10
ISBN: 978-1-77049-602-6
Animal Farm meets The Great Escape…. The back-and-forth among the characters is over the top … but Bar-el pulls it off with great charm. The result is purely delightful, as are Tatjana Mai-Wyss’s appropriately vintage-looking spot illustrations. The short first-person passages help move the story along, ending with a comedy-of-errors that culminates in Audrey happily living out her days at an animal sanctuary. Bar-el manages to gently and thoughtfully introduce kids to the concept of the abattoir while also underscoring that a farm’s very purpose is producing food. At its heart, Audrey (Cow) encourages kids to think even as it entertains – the mark of wonderful children’s literature.” – Starred Review, Quill and Quire

About the Award
The award, made possible by the Ruth Schwartz Foundation, is presented annually to the authors/illustrators of two outstanding works of Canadian children’s literature – a picture book and a young-adult/middle-reader title.

Ruth Schwartz was a respected Toronto bookseller who ran a bookstore in the Park Plaza Hotel. She made a special effort to promote Canadian-authored children’s books. In 1976, after Ruth Schwartz’s death, her sister, Sylvia, established an award in her name. In honour of the late Sylvia Schwartz, the family recently added her name to the award.

The award is administered jointly – the Ontario Arts Council oversees the jury process and publicizes the award and the Ontario Arts Foundation publicizes the award.

The winners are selected by two juries of young readers, which this year are students at Alexander Muir / Gladstone Avenue Junior and Senior Public School in Toronto and will be announced there on Friday, May 15, 2015.