Friday, September 27, 2013

Star Wars Reads Day: October 5th, 2013

The second annual Star Wars Reads Day is fast approaching! On October 5th, 2013, libraries and bookstores across North America will embrace their inner jedi in an all day Star Wars celebration. This international event, hosted by Lucasfilm Ltd., teams up with publishing partners across North America to celebrate literacy with all things Star Wars, featuring some of the best Star Wars authors. Last year, 30 authors and 1,500 costumed volunteers participated in over 1,200 events across North America. 

Participating publishers include:
Abrams                              DK                       Random House Audio
Chronicle Books                  Quirk                   Workman
Dark Horse                         Scholastic             
Del Ray                              Titan Magazines

Bookstores and libraries are invited to host their own Star Wars Reads event. Hosts are encouraged to get excited and promote their event on the Star Wars Reads Facebook page and in their local area. There are downloadable event kits, trivia and activity sheets available here. 

To find an event near you, or to register your own library or bookstore event, click here or visit the Facebook page and may the force be with you! 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Orca Limelights Series

Know any kids who love to entertain and have a passion for the performing arts? Whether they're interested in theatre, dance, or music, be sure to check out Orca's new Limelights series. Each novel focuses on one aspect of performance art, including those I've mentioned, as well as magic, slam poetry, and stand-up comedy.

To learn more about the Orca Limelights series, please visit Orca's website.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Announcing the Finalists for the 2013 Canadian Children's Book Centre Awards!

The Canadian Children's Book Centre (CCBC) has announced the finalists for this year's Canadian Children's Book Centre Awards. With up to $130,000 in prizes this year, here are the finalists:

TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award ($30,000)
1. Kids of Kabul: Living Bravely Through a Never-Ending War by Deborah Ellis (Groundwood Books)
2. One Year in Coal Harbour by Polly Horvath (Groundwood Books)
3. The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larson by Susin Nielsen (Tundra Books)
4. The Stamp Collector by Jennifer Lanthier, Illustrated by Francois Thisdale (Fitzhenry & Whiteside)
5. Virginia Wolf by Kyo Maclear, Illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault (Kids Can Press)

Prix TD de littérature canadienne pour l’enfance et la jeunesse ($30,000)
1. À la recherche du bout du monde by Michael Noel (Éditions Hurtubise)
2. La clé à molette by Élise Gravel (Éditions la courte échelle)
3. Jane, le renard & moi by Fanny Britt, Illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault (Éditions La Pastèque)
4. Minegan, mon village, Poems by Inuit schoolchildren, Illustrated by Rogé (Éditions de la Bagnole)
5. Tu me prends en photo by Marie-Francine Hébert, Illustrated by Jean-Luc Trudel (Éditions Les 400 coups)

Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award ($20,000)
1. Mr. King's Things by Geneviève Côté (Kids Can Press)
2. Mr. Zinger's Hat by Cary Fagan, Illustrated by Dušan Petričić (Tundra Books)
3. The Stamp Collector by Jennifer Lanthier, Illustrated by Francois Thisdale (Fitzhenry & Whiteside)
4. Uncle Wally's Old Brown Shoe by Wallace Edwards (Orca Book Publishers)
5. Virginia Wolf by Kyo Maclear, Illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault (Kids Can Press)

Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction ($10,000)
1. Going Up! Elisha Otis's Trip to the Top by Monica Kulling, Illustrated by David Parkins
(Tundra Books)
2. Kate & Pippin: An Unlikely Love Story by Martin Springett, Photographs by Isobel Springett (Puffin Canada)
3. Kids of Kabul: Living Bravely Through a Never-Ending War by Deborah Ellis (Groundwood Books)
4. Real Justice: Fourteen and Sentenced to Death - The Story of Steven Truscott by Bill Swan (Lorimer)
5. Rescuing the Children: The Story of Kindertransport by Deborah Hodge (Tundra)

Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People ($5,000)
1. A Call to Battle (I Am Canada) by Gillian Chan (Scholastic Canada)
2. The Lynching of Louie Sam by Elizabeth Stewart (Annick Press)
3. Making Bombs for Hitler by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch (Scholastic Canada)
4. Violins of Autumn by Amy McAuley (Walker Publishing Company Inc.)
5. Yesterday's Dead by Pat Bourke (Second Story Press)

John Spray Mystery Award ($5,000)
1. Becoming Holmes by Shane Peacock (Tundra)
2. Breakaway by Michael Betcherman (Razorbill/Penguin Group)
3. Devil's Press by Sigmund Brouwer (Orca Book Publishers)
4. The Lynching of Louie Sam by Elizabeth Stewart (Annick Press)
5. Neil Flambé and the Tokyo Treasure by Kevin Sylvester (Simon & Schuster)

Monica Hughes Award for Science Fiction and Fantasy ($5,000)
1. The Girl with the Borrowed Wings by Rinsai Rossetti (Dial Books)
2. Island of Doom: The Hunchback Assignments IV by Arthur Slade (HarperCollins)
3. Rebel Heart by Moira Young (Doubleday Canada)
4. Seraphina by Rachel Hartman (Doubleday Canada)
5. Shadows Cast by Stars by Catherine Knutsson (Atheneum Books for Young Readers)

The winners will be announced at the two invite-only galas held in Toronto on October 22, 2013 and Montreal on October 29, 2013. Young readers are encouraged to vote for their favourite book from the shortlisted TD Award titles for the first ever Fan Choice Award, presented by TD and CBC Books. For more information, click here.

Congratulations finalists! 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Book trailer: Numero

Who knew counting to ten could be a work of art? 

Numero by Marion Bataille will be available October, 2013. Click here to learn more about the book and the artist!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

A Room of Their Own: New York Times Style Magazine Looks into 5 Author's Writing Rooms

Clean. Cluttered. Silent. Noisy. Every writer has a unique preference to getting their words on the page. New York Times Style Magazine explores the habits of five authors, each with book releases this fall, whose writing rooms play an interesting role in their work. 

Author Edwidge Danticat, for example, surrounds herself with pictures from her past - faces of friends and even strangers - who have touched her life in some way. When inspiration is hard to find, she stares at the faces around her, knowing she is not alone. 

For Jonathan Lethem, the spirit and legacy of his writing room's former occupant guides his words across the page as he aspires to follow in her footsteps. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Humans of New York

Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton is a forthcoming book from St. Martin's Press that aims to capture the individuality and spirit of the city that never sleeps. The hardbound book, which is inspired by the very popular blog of the same name, boasts 304 pages of full-colour portraits and images of New York's inhabitants. Stanton began the Humans of New York project in the summer of 2010 in an attempt to capture the personalities and individual stories of New Yorkers. Since its launch, the blog has amassed over one million followers and Stanton's photographs have appeared in and

Humans of New York will be available October 2013. In the meantime, I'd encourage you to check out the Humans of New York blog and Instagram

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Munro's Books: Celebrating 50 Years of Business

Jim Munro, 83, inside Munro's Books 

This month marks the 50th birthday of Munro's Books, the beloved Victoria-based independent bookstore owned and operated by Jim Munro. Munro's fame began with a vision from Jim himself when he relocated his small bookstore to its current location, a stately building formerly used as a bank. Standing in the vacant 6,000 square feet Jim was reminded of a childhood fantasy, and felt like Louis XIV with his Versailles. 

Perhaps it was this vision, along with the beautiful building itself that found Munro's Books on last month's list of 16 Bookstores You Have to See Before You Die (Buzzfeed). 

While Jim admits there have been challenges as an independent bookstore competing with larger retailers such as Chapters, and more, the increasing demand in digital books, the experience of shopping at Munro's is a unique one. The atmosphere is welcoming and the employees are known to make helpful recommendations. Overall, there is a shared love and respect for the books, one that cannot be found just anywhere. Happy 50th Munro's Books! Here's to 50 more!

Friday, September 6, 2013

The Raincoast Book Club Program

If you would like to start a book club, or if you just need some fresh ideas for your current one, look no further than Raincoast's Book Club program! They've got you covered with monthly adult and kids book recommendations, reading and discussion guides, and monthly giveaways. Book club kits are available for booksellers and librarians, and each kit includes posters, bookmarks, and other fun goodies from Raincoast's publishers. They've even got some delicious recipes on their website to make sure your book club meeting is the place to be! 
For a library/bookstore to sign up, you can email

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Back to School with Owlkids!

Happy first day of school! A Day at School is a delightful book that features three kids and their first, respective days, at day care, kindergarten and 1st grade. To celebrate this book and event ;) Owlkids has created printable bookplates and stickers by Owlkids and never lose your book again!