2012 Governor General’s Literary Award Winner

Today, the Governor General’s Literary Award winners were announced at the Conservatoire de musique et d’art dramatique du Québec in Montréal.

Tundra Books is happy to announce that The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen by Susin Nielsen is the Winner of the 2012 Governor General’s Literary Award in Children’s Text. Congratulations to Susin Nielsen!

The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen
Written by Susin Nielsen
Hardcover | 256 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-372-8
eBook: 978-1-77049-373-5
Of the winning title, the jury said, “The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen by Susin Nielsen is an engaging grief story. Thought-provoking and relevant, it addresses the effects of bullying in a realistic, compelling and compassionate way, exemplifying the adage ‘There are two sides to every story.’ Henry’s journey is moving and weirdly, wildly funny.”

This marks the second consecutive year that Tundra Books has published the winning title in this category. In 2011, author Christopher Moore’s From Then to Now: A Short History of the World took the honour. Tundra’s publisher, Alison Morgan, said, “We are thrilled to have another Governor General’s Award-winner on our list. The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen is about the terrible aftermath of bullying. As a humourist and novelist, Susin’s deep understanding of family relationships and teens allows her to explore difficult territory with a deft touch. We are proud to have published this important novel and to have Susin on our list.”

We would also like to congratulate all of the Governor General’s Literary Award finalists, winners, and publishers! What a wonderful day for Canadian literature!

Finalists for the 2012 Governor General’s Literary Awards


Each year, the Governor General’s Literary Awards (the GGs) honour the best in Canadian literature. Tundra Books would like to showcase our two finalists!

For Children’s Text, congratulations to Susin Nielsen!

The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen
Written by Susin Nielsen
Format: Hardcover
Ages 11-14
256 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-372-8
eBook: 978-1-77049-373-5
Thirteen-year-old Henry’s life changes forever when his older brother leaves one morning with their father’s hunting rifle. At his therapist’s suggestion, Henry confides in a journal all his thoughts and his love of the wrestling show Saturday Night Smash-Up.

For Children’s Illustration, congratulations to David Parkins!

In the Bag!
Margaret Knight Wraps It Up

Written by Monica Kulling
Illustrated by David Parkins
Format: Hardcover
Ages 5-8
32 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-239-4
Margaret (Mattie) is different from most American girls living in 1850. She loves to build and invent! Best known for inventing the paper bag, Mattie would go on to have 90 inventions to her name and over 20 patents. From Tundra’s Great Idea Series of inventor biographies.

The winners will be announced on Tuesday, November 13, 2012. Fingers crossed!

THIN AIR 2012


Each year in September, Winnipeg welcomes writers from Canada and around the world for a week of readings, lectures, interviews, conversations, book launches, and other events. That week of literary feasting is known as THIN AIR, the Winnipeg International Writers Festival. With programming for adults and children, in English and French, THIN AIR is an infusion of energy into the thriving literary culture of this city. This year’s festival dates are September 21 – 29! The following Tundra authors will be busy visiting young readers in the area, click on their names for a list of their events:

Shane Peacock
Shane Peacock is an award-winning novelist, biographer, journalist, screenwriter, and playwright. He has made his most dramatic impact on readers and critics with his wildly popular Boy Sherlock Holmes series, which mixes brilliant storytelling with fascinating historical detail about turn-of-the-century London. The long list of honours for the first five books include the Ruth & Sylvia Schwartz and Geoffrey Bilson Awards; all five are Premier Selections for the Junior Library Guild of America. Three titles have hit the Manitoba Young Readers Choice Award lists, including The Dragon Turn for 2012. The final installment in the series, Becoming Holmes, appears this fall. Peacock lives near Cobourg, ON.

Susin Nielsen
Gemini Award-winner Susin Nielsen is an acclaimed television writer, with sixteen episodes of Degrassi Junior High and an adaptation of Susan Juby’s Alice, I Think to her credit. She is also gifted at reaching the young adult audience with her fiction. Word Nerd and Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom have generated an impressive list of awards and nominations. Both titles have won the Manitoba Young Readers Choice Award, and Nielsen will receive her honour this fall in Winnipeg. Her new title, The Reluctant Journal of Henry K Larsen, presents another resilient adolescent dealing with extraordinary challenges. Nielsen lives in Vancouver, BC.

Heather Hartt-Sussman
Heather Hartt-Sussman has had a lively career as a print and broadcast journalist and Hollywood columnist. She hit the book world with Nana’s Getting Married, which introduced young readers to a grandmother with attitude, and a grandson who struggles to deal with his jealousy of her new boyfriend. Nana and the boy deal with other competitions for attention in Here Comes Hortense!. Hartt-Sussman’s illustrator, Georgia Graham, captures the rollicking energy of the grandparents and the delicate sensibilities of the child. Hartt-Sussman was born in Montreal, lived and worked in LA for nearly fifteen years, and lives now in Toronto.

Georgia Graham
Georgia Graham has illustrated numerous children’s books, including the Wanda books by Barbara Azore, and her own The Lime Green Secret. One of her recent collaborations is with Heather Hartt-Sussman. Their first book, Nana’s Getting Married, introduced young readers to a somewhat possessive boy and his wonderfully unconventional grandmother. Nana is back, and the boy has to deal with Nana’s new husband’s granddaughter in Here Comes Hortense!. Graham’s vivid colours and expressive characters are a big part of the story. Graham grew up in Calgary and now lives on a tree farm in central Alberta.

And you’ll probably want to watch this, the THIN AIR volunteer coordinator has been taking the picture books home for her son to read and review. She’s managed to do a video for the each of the ones he’s read so far!

Go Carter!

The Word on the Street

Don’t forget, the Word on the Street starts this weekend on Sunday, September 23! Here’s a quick glance at the schedules in:

TORONTO – September 23, 2012

Children’s Activity Tent

11:15 – 11:45 AM
My Itchy Body and My Healthy Body
Liza Fromer and Francine Gerstein MD
Activity suitability: All ages
In their Body Works series Liza Fromer and Dr. Francine Gerstein have taken it upon themselves to think up every question a child could have about their body and answer them in an educational and amusing manner. Each title in the series is divided up by topic and focus on giving all the information a child could want to feel safe and secure in their own skin. Join Liza Fromer and Dr. Francine Gerstein for a fast-paced Body Works Quiz – and test your knowledge about the human body!

1:00 – 1:45 PM
Checkers and Dot and Checkers and Dot at the Zoo
J. Torres and J. Lum
Activity suitability: Ages 3-7
Welcome to the wonderfully patterned world of Checkers and Dot, a sweet and striking series of board books with high-contrast, patterned art for developing eyes, simple but memorable rhyming text for reading aloud, and cute-as-a-button characters! Join J. Lum and J. Torres for a felt puppet decorating and a hat making activity.

Children’s Reading Tent

3:40 – 4:00 PM
Mr. Zinger’s Hat
Cary Fagan is the award-winning author of several young adult novels and picture books. This wonderful new story is about stories, and story-telling, and is sure to enchant and instruct children at home and at school for years to come. This is the tale of a bored little boy, who meets a thoughtful man, and together they build a story. This story within a story is charming and changes both their lives… and quite possibly the readers as well.

4:30 – 4:50 PM
Miss Mousie’s Blind Date
As soon as Miss Mousie’s eyes alight on handsome Matt LaBatt, the water rat, she can think of nothing but how to catch his attention. Should she try to speak, bat her eyelashes, drop her hankie? In front of Mole, the deli-owner, the water rat breaks the spell by insulting Miss Mousie, who retreats to her burrow and hides in shame. When Mousie receives an anonymous dinner invitation, she decides to accept it. But how to dress so her mystery date will like what he sees? In this charming timeless tale, author Tim Beiser shows the reader that love truly lies in the eye of the beholder. And check out Sienna’s review on the WOTS blog!

This is Not the Shakespeare Stage

4:15 – 4:45 PM
Becoming Holmes
The Boy Sherlock Holmes, His Final Case
Shane Peacock is an award-winning novelist, playwright, journalist and television screenwriter. His bestselling series for young adults, The Boy Sherlock Holmes, has been published in ten countries in twelve languages and has found its way onto more than forty shortlists. He enjoys reading, spending time with his kids, playing and coaching hockey, and visiting schools, conferences and festivals across North America to speak about reading and writing. Shane lives in the countryside north of Cobourg, Ontario. For more information, visit http://www.shanepeacock.ca.

LETHBRIDGE – September 23, 2012

Teen Zone via Skype

3:30 – 4:30 PM
Becoming Holmes
The Boy Sherlock Holmes, His Final Case
Shane Peacock is an author, playwright, television screenwriter, and journalist. He likes to write about extraordinary people and create unusual characters. His first book was a biography of The Great Farini, about perhaps the most amazing man in Canadian history, who walked over Niagara Falls in 1860 and invented the human cannonball act in the circus. His novels for young adults have won many accolades. His best-selling Boy Sherlock Holmes series has won and been nominated for 50 awards on their own and been published in 10 countries in 12 languages. His final Boy Sherlock, Becoming Holmes, appears this fall from Tundra Books!

VANCOUVER – September 30, 2012

Kids Tent

4:00 PM
The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen
Canadian Screenwriter and Gemini Award-winning author Susin Nielsen got her start writing for the hit television show Degrassi Junior High. Her novel Word Nerd was a finalist for the TD Canadian Children’s Book Award and won the Red Maple, Rocky Mountain, Willow, and Manitoba Young Readers’ Choice Awards. Her novel Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom has received rave reviews and has already been translated into French, Portuguese and German. Susin lives in Vancouver.

For more information about the Word on the Street, you can visit their website, facebook page, twitter, and blog.

Tuesdays with Tundra 22

Tuesdays with Tundra is a monthly post on our new releases. The following books are available today in stores and online!

The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen
Written by Susin Nielsen
Hardcover | Ages 11-14 | 256 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-372-8
eBook: 978-1-77049-373-5
“…With a quirky cast of characters and a thought-provoking storyline, Susin Nielsen’s latest novel is a gem you don’t want to miss. If you have ever been bullied in your life, The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen will especially strike a chord within your heart. I was completely touched and moved to tears at times, yet smiling like crazy at other moments, a feat I’m not sure how Susin Nielsen manages, but she truly does! I laughed. I cried. Susin Nielsen’s The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen is an absolute must-read for everyone.” – Midnight Bloom Reads

Oscar Peterson
The Man and His Jazz

Written by Jack Batten
Hardcover | Ages 10+ | 192 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-269-1
eBook: 978-1-77049-362-9
Called the “Maharaja of the keyboard” by Duke Ellington, Oscar Peterson released over 200 recordings, won seven Grammy Awards, received the Order of Canada and is considered to have been one of the greatest jazz pianists of all time. This new biography from award-winning author Jack Batten, promises to tell Oscar Peterson’s story in a complete, compelling and sympathetic way.

Watching Jimmy
Written by Nancy Hartry
Trade Paperback | Ages 9+ | 160 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-360-5
“A short, but powerful coming-of-age novel… Hartry has created memorable characters, carefully weaving family relationships tinged by fear and guilt… This is a moving – and fast-moving – story, alive with the fears and uncertainties of life in Canada soon after the Second World War…. A thoughtful read.” – Jury Comments, Finalist for the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People

Winter Shadows
Written by Margaret Buffie
Trade Paperback | Age: 11+ | 336 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-358-2
“…the well-drawn characters will eventually capture readers’ attention. The details of daily life and racial politics in 1856 Manitoba, Canada, add weight to the story and the chaste romance between Beatrice and her two suitors will further draw in fans of historical fiction.” – School Library Journal

These books are available on September 25, but we’re going to include them on this roundup!

It’s Our Nature
Written by Rebeca Orozco
Illustrated by Menena Cottin
Hardcover | Ages 5-8 | 24 pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-283-7
An elegant look at similarities between animals and humans. Believe it or not, animals have a strong resemblance to humans. Rebeca Orozco’s informative text and Menena Cottin’s brilliant images show us how animals can live together in harmony.

When I Get Older
The Story behind “Wavin’ Flag”
Written by K’naan
Illustrated by Rudy Gutierrez
Hardcover | Ages 7-10 | 32 Pages
ISBN: 978-1-77049-302-5
eBook: 978-1-77049-303-2
In his first book for children, When I Get Older, Somali-Canadian poet, rapper, singer, and songwriter K’naan tells his own story. “Wavin’ Flag” has become an international anthem. Its powerful words of hope have crossed generations and borders, and have made K’naan an international star.

Pub Date Giveaway: In the comments below, tell us which new September release of Tundra’s you would love and one lucky reader will receive their requested book! One request per person and please review our rules. This giveaway ends at midnight on Monday, September 17, 2012!

UPDATE: Congratulations to Mary-Esther, who will be getting a copy of Susin Nielsen’s The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen.