Kirkus Reviews has revealed their picks for the Best Middle-Grade Books of 2019 That Prove the Past Isn’t Past and we’re thrilled that one of our titles made the list. Congratulations to Eric and Kathy!
By Eric Walters and Kathy Kacer
Hardcover | 288 Pages | Ages 10-14
A violin and a middle-school musical unleash a dark family secret in this moving story by an award-winning author duo.
“Shirli’s voice is true and strong as she narrates her own tale of rehearsals, her very ethnically diverse friendships, her deep distress as she witnesses Zayde’s pain, and her joy as he reconnects with his music. A beautiful, painful, heartfelt reminder that the past is with us still.” – Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews
What’s a pampered cat to do now that she has to compete for attention with an ill-mannered puppy?
“Nielsen’s tale and Mueller’s digitally created pooch and puss pair perfectly, the princess acting as a nice stand-in for a pampered first child. The light touch of humor and twist at the end make this a must for storytime collections.” – Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews
The humorous adventures of an irresistible little rock who finds herself in constantly changing circumstances, Petra is a picture book that celebrates the power of perspective and believing in yourself.
“Coppo accomplishes a lot with a little. Her illustrations—a mixture of tempera, pastels, and digital collage—are simple but emote mountains…. Lending itself to a range of readings, from perspective to an exploration of identity, this Italian import is a pleasingly intelligent book.” – Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews
Ghosts, a family curse, buried secrets — and two girls who have to figure it all out. A new book from an acclaimed author, for fans of Coraline, Doll Bones and The Night Gardener.
“Cotter’s complex and engrossing story is enhanced by its superbly presented isolated Newfoundland setting and a satisfying dose of ghosts. The theme—the power of words—creates both a fascinating conclusion and food for thought.” – Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews
Our queen of spooky middle grade, Charis Cotter, released a new book this fall called The Ghost Road and some of our bloggers participated in a blog tour! Check out what they had to say below and pick up a copy of the book if you’re looking for something to get you in the Halloween spirit.
Lisa @ remarkablylisa said “Charis Cotter has a way with words that made it a perfect blend of middle grade and young adult level of writing.”
Jessica @ Vellichors suggested it as a “book to give you the chills and get you ready for Hallowe’en, but still make you feel warm fuzzies.”
Heather @ Krimsuun Pages liked that “Charis Cotter has a way of describing the environment around the characters that is both eerie and beautiful.”
Zoë @ Writing Whimsy thought the setting was “a charming introduction to Newfoundland in the 1970s.”
Such great reviews! If you’re looking for a Halloween book, look no further than The Ghost Road.
The Ghost Road
Written by Charis Cotter
Hardcover | 368 Pages
For the first time, Ruth is heading to Newfoundland to stay with family she’s never met instead of spending the summer traveling with her dad. When she arrives, she finds life in the small community of Buckle very different from Toronto–everyone knows everyone else, and some of them believe in ghosts and The Sight and family curses. Ruth’s cousin Ruby is also staying for the summer, and the two discover they have a lot in common: they both lost their moms when they were two years old, they’re the same age and they even like the same food. But while Ruby believes in spirits and fairies, Ruth believes in science and cold, hard facts.
When they find ominous information on some tombstones in the local cemetery, Ruth and Ruby start investigating their family’s past and discover that twin girls are born in every generation, and every set of twins dies young, leaving their children without mothers. What’s more, one of the twins always has The Sight and can see the Ghost Road that leads to the mysterious lost settlement of Slippers Cove. What happened there? What does it have to do with their family? And who is the ghostly presence that keeps visiting Ruth late at night?
The answers lie somewhere along the Ghost Road . . . if they can only find it.
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Tundra Books founder, May Cutler at the age of 87. May passed away at her home in Montreal, surrounded by her family after battling several illnesses.
May’s accomplishments were remarkable, and after completing an MA in journalism from Columbia University, she worked for the United Nations, then as a journalist and later taught in the English department at McGill where she set up a three-year extension program in journalism. She also served as the first female mayor of Westmount from 1987-1991.
But we will always know her as the founder of Tundra Books, which she ran for almost 30 years. May was a visionary, and her passion for the arts and creating children’s books as works of art was evident in titles by renowned artists such as William Kurelek, Ted Harrison, Arthur Shilling, Song Nan Zhang, and many others. She is also responsible for the discovery of the incomparable Dayal Kaur Khalsa, who admired her publisher so much that she named the heroine of her books May.
May worked with author Roch Carrier and filmmaker Sheldon Cohen, when they teamed up to create one of Tundra’s perennial favorites, The Hockey Sweater. She also introduced Mohawk artist C. J. Taylor and the legends of the continent’s aboriginal peoples to children across the country.
May’s legacy is lasting. Every children’s book published in this country bears her influence. Her contribution to Canadian children’s literature was enormous and will live on forever.
We invite Tundra’s authors, artists, colleagues, and anyone who knew May, or even those who want to comment, to please leave your thoughts and reminisces below.
The life and accomplishments of former publisher May Cutler will be celebrated in a special memorial event on Saturday, March 19 at 2:00p.m. at Victoria Hall in Montreal. The memorial event is being organized by members of the Cutler family, and will feature several guest speakers, including Mayor Peter Trent and author Roch Carrier.
Family establishes May Cutler Arts Fund
In honour of Cutler’s life and accomplishments — especially her interest in promoting the arts — a memorial fund has been set up by the family to help sponsor various art projects. This initiative came about over the past two weeks, said daughter-in-law Marina Cutler.
“As word got out about May’s passing, we had so many people contacting us to ask what they could do,” said Marina, who is overseeing the fund. “People wanted to know if they could make a donation, or should they send flowers — and if so, where should they send them?
“May and I had spent a lot of time discussing one of her dreams, which was to create an international sculpture garden in Montreal, so that was the springboard for the idea of the fund. We thought we could establish the May Cutler Art Fund in order to further her dream of this garden. Right now the focus is to follow through on that idea.”
Anyone interested in making a non-tax-exempt contributions to this fund can do so by sending a cheque to the May Cutler Arts Fund, P.O. Box 122 Station Victoria, Westmount, Quebec, H3Z 2V4. Contributions can also be made at the memorial event in Victoria Hall.