Remembrance Day Reading

This week, students from across the country will be reflecting on war and the sacrifices made by men and women on the front lines and the home front. Here are some titles to help contextualize the First and Second World Wars.

PICTURE BOOKS

Proud as a Peacock, Brave as a Lion
By Jane Barclay
Illustrated by Renné Benoit
ISBN 9781770491274 | Ebook
Ages 4-6 | Tundra Books
During World War I, a goat named Billy was adopted by a platoon of soldiers and made his way across the ocean to be part of the war effort. This charming true story follows Sergeant Billy from his small prairie town to the trenches of World War I and back, through harrowing moments, sad moments, moments of camaraderie and moments of celebration. This unforgettable goat and the platoon that loved him will capture your heart!

Sergeant Billy: The True Story of the Goat Who Went to War
By Mireille Messier
Illustrated by Kass Reich
ISBN 9780735264427 | Hardcover
Ages 4-8 | Tundra Books
During World War I, a goat named Billy was adopted by a platoon of soldiers and made his way across the ocean to be part of the war effort. This charming true story follows Sergeant Billy from his small prairie town to the trenches of World War I and back, through harrowing moments, sad moments, moments of camaraderie and moments of celebration. This unforgettable goat and the platoon that loved him will capture your heart!

MIDDLE GRADE

Innocent Heroes: Stories of Animals in the First World War
By Sigmund Brouwer
ISBN 9781101918463 | Hardcover
Ages 9-12 | Tundra Books
Never before have the stories of animal war heroes been collected in such a special way. This book consists of eight connected fictional stories about a Canadian platoon in WW1. The Storming Normans have help from some very memorable animals: we meet a dog who warns soldiers in the trench of a gas attack, a donkey whose stubbornness saves the day, a cat who saves soldiers from rat bites, and many more. Each story is followed by nonfiction sections that tell the true story of these animals from around the world and of the Canadian soldiers who took Vimy Ridge

Broken Strings
By Eric Walters and Kathy Kacer
ISBN 9780735266247 | Hardcover
Ages 10-14 | Puffin Canada
It’s 2002. In the aftermath of the twin towers — and the death of her beloved grandmother — Shirli Berman is intent on moving forward. The best singer in her junior high, she auditions for the lead role in Fiddler on the Roof, but is crushed to learn that she’s been given the part of the old Jewish mother in the musical rather than the coveted part of the sister. But there is an upside: her “husband” is none other than Ben Morgan, the cutest and most popular boy in the school. Deciding to throw herself into the role, she rummages in her grandfather’s attic for some props. There, she discovers an old violin in the corner — strange, since her Zayde has never seemed to like music, never even going to any of her recitals. Showing it to her grandfather unleashes an anger in him she has never seen before, and while she is frightened of what it might mean, Shirli keeps trying to connect with her Zayde and discover the awful reason behind his anger. A long-kept family secret spills out, and Shirli learns the true power of music, both terrible and wonderful.

NON-FICTION

A Soldier’s Sketchbook: The Illustrated First World War Diary of R.H. Rabjohn
By John Wilson
Illustrated by R.H. Rabjohn
ISBN 9781770498549 | Hardcover
Ages 10+ | Tundra Books
A unique First World War diary, illustrated with more than a hundred stunning pencil sketches, for children learning history and also for adults interested in a new perspective on the War and authentic wartime artefacts.

The War to End All Wars: The Story of World War I
By Jack Batten
ISBN 9780887768798 | Hardcover
Ages 10+ | Tundra Books
In this riveting account of a tragic episode in world history, author Jack Batten takes readers through a far bloodier conflict than mankind had ever before endured. Meet the soldiers who fought the deadly battles along the Western Front. Follow the trail of flying ace Billy Bishop as he tangles in the air with the Red Baron. Learn the strategy of Britain’s Grand Fleet of warships as it heads into the biggest sea battle in history. Discover how civilians decoded virtually all the messages the Germans sent to their ships around the world.

We Remember

elephants

“Poppa,” I whisper, “why are you crying?”
“I am remembering,” he says. “A war is something you never forget.”
“Elephants never forget,” I tell him.
“Then let’s be elephants,” he says.
A soft rain falls as a bugler trumpets his notes up into the cold, gray sky. We link our hands and bow our heads.

Festival of Trees 2011


The Ontario Library Association hosted another successful Forest of Reading Festival of Trees at the Harbourfront Centre on May 11 and 12th. It is always one of our highlights of the year to see hundreds of readers cheer for their favourite books.


As usual, the yellow school buses line up along Queens Quay West after delivering students from all over Ontario to the festival.


Tundra went in with four nominated titles this year. In the Blue Spruce category, we have Jane Barclay and Renné Benoit’s Proud as a Peacock, Brave as a Lion. Can you spot Jane Barclay on stage? She’s the author taking a photograph of the audience.

Congratulations to Dave Whamond, My Think-A-Ma-Jink was named the winner of the Blue Spruce Award.


Another rewarding parts of the festival are the author and illustrator signings. Just look at the number of readers lining up!


We found Monica Kulling signing autograph sheets and copies of It’s a Snap! George Eastman’s First Photo, illustrated by Bill Slavin. Bill wasn’t able to attend, but he and Esperança Melo lent Monica their Brownie camera (made by George Eastman) to show all the kids.

Congratulations to Ashley Spires, Binky the Space Cat won the Silver Birch Award – Express category!


Ann Love and Jane Drake were there to sign Talking Tails: The Incredible Connection Between People and Their Pets. Their book was nominated for the Silver Birch Award – Nonfiction.

Congratulations to Valerie Wyatt and Fred Rix, their book How to Build Your Own Country was named the winner!


S&B Books also had a tent to sell all the nominated titles. They are the official sponsor and wholesaler for the Forest of Reading program.


We also noticed that the children could leave little notes and messages for their favourite authors and illustrators. Very cool idea!


Thank you to all the organizers, volunteers, authors, illustrators, teachers, and students for all their work! Again, congratulations to all the authors and illustrators! Until next year!

The 2011 OLA Forest of Reading® Nominees

Yesterday, the Ontario Library Association revealed the short-listed nominated titles for the 2011 Forest of Reading®. All nominated titles have been posted on the Reading Program page of the OLA website, which you can visit at http://www.accessola.com/reading.

Tundra would like to congratulate Jane Barclay, Renné Benoit, Monica Kulling, Bill Slavin, Ann Love, Jane Drake, and Nancy Hartry!

Blue Spruce Award (JK-Grade 2)

Proud as a Peacock, Brave as a Lion
By Jane Barclay
Illustrated by Renné Benoit
ISBN 978-88776-951-1
Hardcover
24 Pages
“…Barcaly has taken on an important topic in an effective and touching way…. The text is complemented beautifully with Benoit’s artwork rendered in watercolours and gouache. The gentle wash of colours is soft and expressive, with the red poppies making an impression….” – CM Magazine

Silver Birch Award – Express (Grades 2-4)

It’s a Snap! George Eastman’s First Photograph
By Monica Kulling
Illustrated by Bill Slavin
ISBN 978-88776-881-1
Hardcover
32 Pages
“…Love the story, the history and the illustrations. We had a great time reading it together and talking about how much cameras have changed. It’s great to look at our past to see how far we’ve come….” – The Book Broads

Silver Birch Award – Nonfiction (Grades 4-6)

Talking Tails: The Incredible Connection Between People and Their Pets
By Ann Love and Jane Drake
Illustrated by Bill Slavin
ISBN 978-88776-884-2
Hardcover
80 Pages
“…Written in what might be described as an infectiously friendly fashion, with an ample array of narrative … and plentifully illustrated with witty watercolours by the irrepressible Bill Slavin, Talking Tails will appeal to those who are contemplating having a pet in their lives, or those who just want affirmation of the rightness of their choice of pet – and perhaps more information about the cat, dog or leopard gecko they dote on.” – The Globe and Mail

Golden Oak Award (Adult Learners)

Watching Jimmy
By Nancy Hartry
ISBN 978-88776-871-2
Hardcover
160 Pages
“…Nancy Hartry’s observant, smart, and iconoclastic narrator floats the story over the surface of a despair which often threatens to engulf the characters, but somehow never does….” – Canadian Literature

The Festival of Trees™ will be taking place on May 11-12, 2011 at the Harbourfront Centre. We’ll be there to cheer on our authors and illustrators!

The 2010 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Award

The winners of the 2010 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Award were announced today. As usual, we were all invited to attend the ceremony at the school. The winners were selected by two juries: students in grades 3 and 4 chose the children’s picture book winner and students in grades 7 and 8 picked the young adult/middle reader award winner.

Congratulations to our authors and illustrator!

Winner of the Children’s Picture Book Award Category
Proud as a Peacock, Brave as a Lion
Written by Jane Barclay
Illustrated by Renné Benoit

Winner of the Young Adult/Middle Reader Book Award Category
Vanishing Girl: The Boy Sherlock Holmes, His 3rd Case
Written by Shane Peacock

Renné Benoit and Jane Barclay get their pictures taken with the grade 3 and 4 students and the awards committee:

Shane Peacock with the grade 7 and 8 student jurors:

Renné, Jane, and Shane stayed to sign books for the students:

Not to break tradition, there were cupcake treats at the end of the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Award!

Thank you to the Ontario Arts Foundation, the Ontario Arts Council, the Awards Committee, the Canadian Booksellers Association, the students, librarians, teachers, and school principal!