2011 Finalists for the Book of the Year Award

ForeWord ReviewsBook of the Year Awards were established to bring increased attention to librarians and booksellers of the literary and graphic achievements of independent publishers and their authors.

Here is a list of the 2011 Tundra Finalists in their respective categories:

Young Adult Nonfiction Category:
“Scribbling Women” True Tales from Astonishing Lives
by Marthe Jocelyn
Hardcover | 208 pages
ISBN: 978-0-88776-952-8
eBook: 978-1-77049-230-1
“…a wonderful example of a book that will break down any negative stereotypes about biographies. [Jocelyn]… creates lively, sometimes humorous pieces that blend straight biographic detail and anecdotal accounts about some lesser known women writers in history…. Not only does Jocelyn share extraordinary stories about these women, but her piece also celebrates writers of all kinds, inspiring young adults, particularly girls, to value their own voices and experiences by writing through whatever means they choose….” – ForeWord Reviews

Young Adult Fiction Category:
First Descent
by Pam Withers
Hardcover | 272 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-257-8
eBook: 978-1-77049-274-5
“…From the first page, when Rex hears a crack of river ice, sees an eight-year-old in peril, and enacts a dramatic rescue in which he must out-paddle an advancing mountain of ice, Withers flings the reader from one perilous adventure to another….” – Booklist

Young Adult Nonfiction Category:
Five Thousand Years of Slavery
by Marjorie Gann and Janet Willen
Hardcover | 176 pages
ISBN: 978-0-88776-914-6
eBook: 978-1-77049-151-9
“This well-researched global survey introduces readers to slavery practices, customs, suffering, uprisings, and revolts as well as antislavery efforts from ancient Greece and Rome to today’s world…. The authors promote global awareness and issue a call to action…. Informative documentary photos and factually rich sidebars enhance the text…. This groundbreaking title brings the disturbing subject into historical and contemporary focus.” – Starred Review, School Library Journal

Juvenile Nonfiction Category:
In the Bag! Margaret Knight Wraps It Up
by Monica Kulling and illustrated by David Parkins in the
Hardcover | 32 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-239-4
“Third in the Great Idea series, this concise introduction to trailblazing American inventor … reveals a woman committed to living life on her own terms, unafraid to fight for her successes. In clean, straightforward prose, Kulling explains how Knight’s interest in and knack for machines was present even at a young age…. Paired with Parkins’s detailed and handsome pen-and-ink illustrations, the book focuses on Knight’s invention of a paper bag–manufacturing machine and her legal fight to protect her creation after her idea was stolen.” – Publishers Weekly

Juvenile Fiction Category:
Stones for My Father
by Trilby Kent
Hardcover | 176 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-252-3
eBook: 978-1-77049-260-8
“This meticulously researched novel about a white Afrikaner girl caught up in the Boer War at the turn of the 19th century brings to light a hitherto overlooked aspect of South African history.” – School Library Journal

Young Adult Fiction Category:
The Dragon Turn: The Boy Sherlock Holmes, His Fifth Case
by Shane Peacock
Hardcover | 240 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-231-8
eBook: 978-1-77049-273-8
“…Shane Peacock has done his research well. His character makes a very believable younger version of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes. Shane has also accurately portrayed London of the 1860’s. True to the style of the original master, this novel is filled with excellent deductions by the young Holmes, numerous twists and turns and an exciting climax that kept me reading at the edge of my seat.” – Jewish Book World

Winners in each category will be announced at the American Library Association annual conference and on the award website in June of 2012.

Congratulations to our authors and illustrators!

The 2012 Willow Awards Nominations

We are very pleased to announce that two of our titles have been nominated for a 2012 Willow Award in the Shining Willow category:

Ella May and the Wishing Stone
Written by Cary Fagan
Illustrated by Geneviève Côté
Hardcover | 32 pages | Ages 4-7
ISBN: 978-1-77049-225-7
“…A great choice for children aged four and up, Ella May and the Wishing Stone is a story that invites readers to think about what it means to be a friend, how best to share treasured items and imaginative ways to solve problems.” – Storytime Standouts

In the Bag!
Margaret Knight Wraps It Up
Written by Monica Kulling
Illustrated by David Parkins
Hardcover | 32 pages | Ages 5-8
ISBN: 978-1-77049-239-4
“…a delightful picture book biography of a little known inspiring woman…. I love stories about smart and determined young women and Kulling’s lively text tells an inspiring story about this determined woman who ‘never gave up without a fight.’ David Parkins’ charming illustrations are filled with carefully drawn period details and engaging humor. Each page turn reveals at least one full-page illustration in authentic-feeling sepia tones…. Don’t miss this really excellent book that opens the door to a multitude of curricular uses.” – Bookends, a Booklist Blog

The Saskatchewan Young Readers’ Choice Award (SYRCA) has three awards – the Shining Willow Award, kindergarten to grade 3, the Diamond Willow Award, grades 4 to 6, and the Snow Willow Award, grades 7 to 9. Ten books written by Canadian authors are nominated at each level. Saskatchewan students may vote in any category in which they have read the minimum number of books required. In 2010, over 12,350 children and young adults throughout the province voted for their favourite book. Students are in the process of voting for the 2011 awards. Award winners will be announced on April 27, 2012 at our annual Gala in Moose Jaw, SK.

OLA Best Bets 2011

Each year the OLA Best Bets Committee selects the top 10 Canadian picture books, fiction and non fiction for children and fiction for teens. The lists were announced at OLA Superconference today. Here are the Tundra titles that made the 2011 lists:

Non Fiction:

  • In the Bag! Margaret Knight Wraps it Up by Monica Kulling, illustrated by David Parkins
  • Honourable mention goes to the Body Works series by Liza Fromer and Francine Gerstein MD, illustrated by Joe Weissmann

Young Adult:

  • Honourable mention goes to First Descent by Pam Withers
  • Honourable mention goes to “Scribbling Women” by Marthe Jocelyn is a noteworthy title (there’s isn’t a nonfiction category)

Picture Book:

  • Honourable mention goes to Noni Says No by Heather Hartt-Sussman, illustrated by Geneviève Côté

Junior Fiction:

  • Honourable mention goes to Stones for My Father by Trilby Kent

Congratulations to our authors and illustrators!

Top 10 Great Books For Children 2012

Congratulations to our authors and illustrators! The Canadian Toy Testing Council (CTTC) have listed the following Tundra books as some of the top ten “Great Books” for 2012:

Gunner: Hurricane Horse
By Judy Andrekson
illustrated by David Parkins
Trade Paperback | 104 Pages
Ages 8-11
ISBN: 978-0-88776-905-4
eBook: 978-1-77049-227-1
“…an emotional true story which educates readers about horses and reminds readers to be resilient during periods of hardship. Telling black and white illustrations decorate chapter headings, and a striking cover complements this well researched story. This newest book in the “True Horse Stories” series is a quick read and contains more humor than the first five books in the series. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this book to a girl or a boy who is looking for the latest book about horses….” – Recommended, CM Magazine

Merci Mr. Dash!
By Monica Kulling
Illustrated by Esperança Melo
Hardcover | 32 Pages
Ages 3-6
ISBN: 978-0-88776-964-1
“…Brightly colored acrylic paintings show Mr. Dash at his best…. Generously sprinkled with easily understood French phrases, this well-paced portrait of patience and toleration ends with a satisfying nap by the fire and the promise of a quiet, Daphne-free day. Children will empathize with Daphne and Mr. Dash and perhaps gain an understanding of both positions. A good choice to generate discussion, this will appeal to energetic youngsters and dog lovers alike.” – Kirkus Reviews

A Night on the Town
By Caroline Merola
Hardcover | 32 Pages
Ages 3-6
ISBN: 978-1-77049-200-4
“… Caroline Merola’s bold illustrations saturate every page with colour and create a rich, expressive backdrop to the story. The narrative flows naturally, with light, playful dialogue and a lively pace that will make reading aloud a pleasure. Pickles McPhee and Martha made loveable, spirited heroines…. A Night on the Town is a good-natured, charmingly illustrated book – just the ticket for a vicarious nighttime romp.” – Quill & Quire

It’s Not about the Apple!
By Veronika Martenova Charles
Illustrated by David Parkins
Trade Paperback | 64 Pages
Ages 5-8
ISBN: 978-0-88776-955-9
eBook: 978-1-77049-215-8
“I really loved this book! It captures the story of Snow White from four different cultural perspectives, and each one pulled me away from the Walt Disney version in a delightful way … to read this text and experience Snow White from different cultural perspectives was completely refreshing…. The theme of this classic fairy tale remains the same, but the uniqueness presented from each culture adds great flavour to the original….” – Highly Recommended, CM Magazine

The other books on this year’s list are:

  • Not a Baby Anymore
  • Le meilleur endroit
  • The Loud Book
  • Kiss Me (I’m a Prince)
  • Savais-tu? Les corneilles!
  • Magalie Lance et compte

Congratulations to all!

2011 Aesop Accolades

The Aesop Award Committee of the Children’s Folklore Section of the American Folklore Society have announced the 2011 Aesop Awards. It’s Not About the Apple, It’s Not About the Crumbs, It’s Not About the Hunter, It’s Not About the Pumpkin, and It’s Not About the Rose have received 2011 Aesop Accolades! Congratulations to Veronika Martenova Charles and David Parkins!

This is what the Award Committee had to say about the Easy-to-Read Wonder Tales:
By learning that the same stories have been told throughout history across many cultures, children can begin to feel a connection to the people of different nations. This is a message that rings true in this series of easy reader books that feature cross-cultural versions of folk and fairy tales familiar to all children. Each volume presents three different versions of a story told by three culturally diverse characters, Jake, Ben, and Lily. In It’s Not About the Rose!, Jake tells the European story of “Beauty and the Beast.” Ben is then reminded of the Indonesian version of this story he knows as “The Lizard.” Lily finally tells her story, based on the Norwegian folktale, “East of the Sun and West of the Moon.” In It’s Not About the Crumbs!, the three friends compare three different versions of Hansel and Gretel tales. It’s Not About the Pumpkin! features Cinderella stories from Europe, India, and China. The children compare versions of Little Red Riding Hood in It’s Not About the Hunter!, and Snow White stories from Greece, Armenia, and Italy are the subjects in It’s Not About the Apple!

These beginning-level books are presented in a format inviting to young readers, including the comic style illustrations of David Parkins. Each book cover shows the three main characters expressively sharing their stories, inviting the reader to join the group. The children compare the stories in familiar venues such as the park or at school, demonstrating how folklore can be part of a child’s everyday life.

Perhaps the best aspect of the series is that it includes folklore in the repertoire of first literature available to young readers. As children grow and mature they will find that folk and fairy tales form the base of much of the body of literature they will be reading. The committee would like to commend the publisher and author for this project that brings folklore into the realm of early reading literature and at the same time works in support of cultural consciousness.

For more information, please visit the American Folklore Society’s website. The Easy-to-Read Wonder Tales are also available as e-books.