GOODNIGHT HOCKEY FANS by Canadian ANDREW LARSEN is a wonderful children’s book – 4 Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟 

Title: GOODNIGHT, HOCKEY FANS 

Author: ANDREW LARSEN    

Genre: CHILDREN’S FICTION

Length: 32 PAGES

Publisher: KIDS CAN PRESS    
Type of Book: EBOOK

Received From: NETGALLEY       

Release Date: OCTOBER 3, 2017  

ISBN: 9781771381055

Price: $18.99 CDN – HARDCOVER

Rating: 4 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟 
DESCRIPTION:  

A young boy doesn’t want to go to bed. The hockey game is on! “What if I can’t fall asleep?” the boy says. “Don’t worry,” says his dad. “You will.” After his parents have tucked him in and turned out the light, he shines a flashlight on his prized hockey possessions around his room: the posters of his favorite players, the pennant for his favorite team, the puck. Then he decides to listen to the game on his bedside radio, which he places under his pillow. With the familiar drone of the announcer’s voice for company, the boy drifts off to sleep. He dreams he has joined his favorite team on the ice — where he scores the winning goal! And the boy smiles as the announcer exclaims, “What a play! What a goal! What a game!” Award-winning author Andrew Larsen’s simple yet evocative story sets just the right tone for the youngest children, who can relate to the boy’s disappointment about missing the exciting nighttime game and his fears that he won’t be able to fall asleep. Jacqui Lee’s illustrations in soothing greens and blues are done in a wonderful blend of nostalgic and contemporary styles that suit the story’s timelessness. This book provides all of the appeal of the perfect bedtime story: the reassurance of caring parents tucking the boy in and then coming back later to check on him, the bedtime routine, the atmospheric winter night outside while it’s cozy and snug inside, and the promise of dreams come true.   

REVIEW

I have to admit that I have a positive bias toward children’s books that are about hockey. As a proud Canadian who also happens to have male children, hockey was a huge part of our lives for many years.

Anyway, with that said, I enjoyed both the story and the illustrations in this book. I think that kids can never have enough hockey titles in their library. I rate this book as 4 out of 5 Stars. 🌟🌟🌟🌟

Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with a free e-copy of this book. 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 

Andrew Larsen is the acclaimed author of such books as Goodnight, Hockey Fans, A Squiggly Story, The Not-So-Faraway Adventure, In the Tree House and The Imaginary Garden. He lives in Toronto, Ontario.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE  

GOODREADS 

TWITTER     

FACEBOOK        

AMAZON  

CHAPTERS  


PUBLISHER’S WEBSITE 


ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR:

JACQUI LEE is a graphic designer and the illustrator of I Am Josephine (And I Am a Living Thing), Taffy Time and the Murilla Gorilla series for young readers. Jacqui currently lives in London, England.

To learn more about this Illustrator, visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE  

TWITTER  

TUMBLR

INSTAGRAM 

AMAZON  


AWARDS

– 2014 Canadian Toy Testing Council Recommended Read Murilla Gorilla: Jungle Detective
– 2013 Ontario Library Association Best Bets for Children Murilla Gorilla: Jungle Detective
– 2012 Applied Arts Illustration Awards The 400 Blows
– 2011 Society of Illustrators Student Scholarship Competition Roots General Store (In Show)
– 2011 Applied Arts Student Awards The Jules Verne Collection
– 2011 Applied Arts Student Awards The Jelly Bean
– 2011 Applied Arts Student Awards The Sandwich with Britny Samuelson
– 2011 Applied Arts Student Awards The Story of Joseph-Armand Bombardier


EXHIBITIONS

– 2014 It’s A Jungle Out There ?! The Ledge Gallery, Calgary, AB
– 2012 On The Move Collage Collage, Vancouver, BC
– 2012 SHAPE JAM (with Jenn Kitagawa & Co), Hashtag Gallery, Toronto, ON
– 2011 The Society of Illustrators Student Scholarship Competition Exhibit – Museum of American Illustration, New York, NY

Visit Jacqui’s page on WORKING, NOT WORKING 

ABOUT THE PUBLISHER: 

Kids Can Press is the largest Canadian-owned children’s publisher. Its catalogue includes an award-winning list of over 600 picture books, nonfiction and fiction titles for young readers, including the worldwide bestselling Franklin the Turtle, Scaredy Squirrel and CitizenKid series.

To learn more about this Publisher, visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

TWITTER    

FACEBOOK      

INSTAGRAM     

PINTEREST   

YOUTUBE  
  

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F.O.L.D. BOOK BASH was terrific – Check out the amazing and diverse authors, poets and publishers I met on Saturday.



F.O.L.D. stands for FESTIVAL OF LITERARY DIVERSITY 

Today at City Hall in Brampton, Ontario, Canada, FOLD hosted the 2017 Book Bash. 

WHAT IS A FOLD BOOK BASH?

  • A one-day book market designed to give authors and book selling organizations a space to promote their books. 
  • A chance for the community to learn about books written by local authors
  • The ability for consumers to learn about and to purchase multicultural books that reflect the diversity of the city and  country in which they live
  • A chance to meet the authors of those books and to have them autographed 
  • As well as the chance to listen to authors read from, and talk about their books. 

    FOLD is the first and only literary festival in Canada to focus on diverse authors and stories.

    The first Festival of Literary Diversity was held in May 2016 and included more than 25 unique sessions held over three days with over thirty of Canada’s most exciting authors.

    Mark your calendars for May 3rd to May 5th, 2018 for the next Festival. There will be quite a few authors and publishers with many different sessions to choose from.

    CHECK IT OUT – YOU’LL BE GLAD YOU DID. 

    AUTHORS I MET ON SATURDAY  & SOME AMAZING BOOKS YOU NEED TO OWN


    #1. 

    JAEL RICHARDSON 


    Jael Richardson
     is one busy woman. Besides being the Founder and Creative Art Director of the Festival of Literary Diversity, she is also an author in her own right.

    Her book THE STONE THROWER: A DAUGHTER’S LESSON, A FATHER’S LIFE is a memoir based on her relationship with her father, CFL quarterback Chuck Ealey. The memoir received a CBC Bookie Award and earned Richardson an Acclaim Award and a My People Award as an Emerging Artist and was adapted into a children’s book in 2016. 

    To learn more about Jael, visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE      

    GOODREADS          

    TWITTER    

    FACEBOOK          

    INSTAGRAM        

    CHAPTERS              

    This is me with Jael at the 2017 FOLD Book Bash

    #2. 

    DEJA BEALS has been writing poetry since the age of sixteen. She finds her inspiration for her poetry in family, friends and everyday experiences.  

    DĖJA BEALS has been writing poetry since the age of 16. You would never know that during those early writing days, her poetry was filled with incorrect grammar. Now, like Déja herself, her writing has matured and
     developed. Her work has blossomed to include a range of topics such as love, faith and everyday experiences.

    Déja finds her poetic inspiration in family, friends and her daily experiences.

    She is known for her silly moments, big laugh and even bigger heart. She has been said to have wisdom beyond her years and uncanny insight which adds depth to her writing. She is currently living in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

    To learn more about this author visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE     

    DÉJA’S OFFICIAL BLOG     

    GOODREADS      

    TWITTER     

    FACEBOOK     

    INSTAGRAM    


    AMAZON          

    DISCOVERING DIVERSITY PUBLISHING    

    3, 4 and 5.

    I met these three very gracious and amazing women at the FOLD Brampton Book Bash. 

    About the multitalented Catherine Graham – Not only has she written the fiction novel QUARRY but she is also only days away from the launch off her new poetry collection THE CELERY FOREST which is being published by Wolsak and Wynn

    Author and Poet – CATHERINE GRAHAM

    QUARRY is a fictional story set in Southern Ontario during the 1980s. Only child Caitlin Maharg lives with her parents beside a water-filled limestone quarry, but her idyllic upbringing collapses when she learns her mother is dying. After a series of family secrets emerge, Caitlin must confront the past and face her uncertain future. 

    THE CELERY FOREST      

    Like Wonderland or Oz, Neverland or Narnia, The Celery Forest is an extraordinary world filled with strange creatures and disorienting sights. But the doorway to the Celery Forest is not a rabbit hole or an old wardrobe. The doorway is an MRI. For poet and novelist Catherine Graham, this is the topsy-turvy world she found herself in after learning she had breast cancer.

         More than a survivor’s tale, these poems are a map through unknowable terrain, infused with awareness and forgetting, written by a poet with the visionary ability to distill our sense of wonder into something we can hold.
    TO LEARN MORE ABOUT CATHERINE GRAHAM, VISIT THE FOLLOWING LINKS: 

    To learn more about this author visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

    GOODREADS 

    TWITTER   

    FACEBOOK    

    INSTAGRAM      

    AMAZON       


    CHAPTERS         

         
    #4.  

    Publisher & Author Alexander Leggett  

    CEO and Founder of Two Wolves Press, Alexandra Leggat is the author of the novel The Incomparables as well as several other published works. 

    Alexandra started Two Wolves  Press as a way to nurture talent without compromise  – to work closely with Two Wolves writers to follow and trust their intuition and publish “instinctual fiction”. 

    Two Wolves Press publishes Catherine Graham’s novel QUARRY and
    Aileen Santos’ SOMEONE LIKE YOU.

    To learn more about this Publisher and author, visit the following links:
     
    OFFICIAL WEBSITE   


    GOODREADS     

    TWITTER   

    FACEBOOK        

    INSTAGRAM      

    AMAZON     

    CHAPTERS       

    MORE INFO COMING IN MY NEXT BLOG POST. 


    AMAZING Children’s Book ROW BOT by B.A. Knowles – A 5 Star 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 Must Read

    Title: ROW BOT          

    Author: B.A. KNOWLES    

    Genre: CHILDREN’S FICTION

    Length: 27 PAGES  

    Publisher: MacINTYRE PURCELL PUBLISHING INC.      

    Type of Book: SOFTCOVER

    Received From: THE AUTHOR

    Release Date: APRIL 5, 2017 

    ISBN: 978-1-77276-040-8

    Price: $14.95 CAD

    Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟    

    REVIEW:

    “It is not every day you meet a rowboat-rowing Row Bot (say that three times fast), but here he is.”

    This Canadian children’s book is pure entertainment for young and old.

    The word play that starts with the title: ROW BOT (as in Robot) continues throughout the book and will delight both parents and children alike.

    The target readership for this book is children aged 4 to 6 years old, but it is my belief that children of all ages will fall in love with ROW BOT, just like I have.

    Through imaginative rhymes and alliteration, author B.A. Knowles has created a fantastic story where the illustrations tell as much of the story as the words do.

    There is also an important lesson buried inside the fun of the story which is something everyone should learn. What is it? Well, you will need to purchase a copy of your own to find out.

    I rate this wonderfully written and impressively illustrated book as 5 out of 5 Stars. 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟    

    With the holiday season fast approaching, parents, Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, and even Santa’s elves will be out shopping for gifts. ROW BOT should be on everyone’s list. In fact, I think it would be the perfect gift not only for the children in your life, but also for their primary school  teachers.

    If all the details I have listed above are still not enough to make you want to run out and buy this book, let me give you about one last incentive. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will support the Bluenose Coastal Action Foundation. 

    This Foundation is leading efforts to protect, enhance and restore our ecosystem through research, education and action on the South Shore of Nova Scotia, Canada. 


    ABOUT THE AUTHOR / ILLUSTRATOR: 

    After completing a science degree at Dalhousie University, B.A. Knowles‘ career path led her around the globe and back again.

    She lives along a dirt road overlooking the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and just a stone’s throw from where she first spied the Riverport Row Bot.

    She now draws (literally) inspiration and motivation from her husband and two young sons, their family exploits, and all the rhymes a tub full of dirty dishes can evoke.

    To learn more about this author / illustrator visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE

    GOODREADS     

    FACEBOOK     

    INSTAGRAM     
      

    AMAZON     

    CHAPTERS    
        

    COMING EVENT – Attend the Toronto Book Launch of THE TORONTO BOOK OF THE DEAD on Friday, September 15th at 7.30pm – FREE ADMISSION 

    Friday, September 15, 2017 – 7:30 PM

    Book Launch: Toronto Lit Up

    Spacing Store

    401 Richmond Street West
    Toronto M5V 3A8

    Cost: FREE

    IFOA and Dundurn Press invite you to the release of The Toronto Book of The Dead by Adam Bunch as part of the Toronto Lit Up book launch series.

    bunch-adam-the-toronto-book-of-the-dead-2

    “Toronto has witnessed countless lives lived and lost as it grew from a muddy little frontier town into a booming metropolis of concrete and glass. The Toronto Book of the Dead tells the tale of the ever-changing city through the lives and deaths of those who made it their final resting place.”

    15-dundurn

     

     


    Toronto Lit Up is a three year initiative, spearheaded by the Toronto Arts Council and IFOA, designed to spotlight Toronto’s writers and empower local artists with career-building opportunities.

    toronto-lit-up-logo-magenta-2Toronto Arts CouncilPrint


    Participants

    • Adam Bunch

      Adam Bunch

      Adam Bunch is the creator of The Toronto Dreams Project, and has written about the history of the city for Spacing Magazine, Torontoist and the Huffington Post. In 2012, he earned an honourable mention for a Governor General’s History Award. Adam lives in Toronto.

    COMPANY TOWN is one of Best DYSTOPIAN FICTION books published in the past few years. This is a MUST BUY. I give COMPANY TOWN 6 out of 5 Stars. 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

    1503645363780

     Title: COMPANY TOWN   

    Author: MADELINE ASHBY     

    Genre: SCIENCE FICTION, DYSTOPIAN FICTION, CANADIAN FICTION, SPECULATIVE FICTION

    Length: 285 PAGES      

    Publisher: TOR BOOKS  

    ISBN: 978-0-7653-9887-1 

    Price: $14.99 USD / $20.99 CDN

    Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 

    CBC CANADA READS 2017      

    I purchased this book at Chapters from a display of books by Canadian authors. I was (and still am) thrilled to find a Canadian author writing Dystopian Science Fiction.

     I read A LOT of books and there are a ton of dystopian titles on the market. Some are just okay, most are pretty good and then there are the exceptional few that are so well written the author’s world comes to life and you never want the story to end. COMPANY TOWN is one such book.

    Not only is it easy to envision the setting – an entire city filled with people just trying to survive on what was once an oil rig and was never meant for long-term habitation, but MADELINE ASHBY has created an entirely new world history.

    In my opinion she is a literary genius. I realize that is a HUGE claim, but once you read COMPANY TOWN, I am fairly certain you will agree.

    I do not want to give away any parts of the plot or the setting, but I do want to get across to anyone reading this review that YOU NEED TO BUY THIS BOOK and YOU WILL BE HAPPY THAT YOU DID.

    With a carefully constructed plot, characters you can’t help but feel for, and incredible world-building, author Madeline Ashby has written a tale that is a warning to us all about caring for our environment and all those who live in it.

    The most terrifying aspect of COMPANY TOWN is that it might become  a reality if no changes are made to how we are all currently living. This book should be required reading for every man, woman and child (over the age of 16.) It is quite simply a MUST READ. I rate it as 5 out of 5 Stars. 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 
    ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 

    Photo Credit: Kayleigh McCollum Photography

    Madeline Ashby is a science fiction writer, futurist, speaker, and immigrant living in Toronto. She writes a column for the Ottawa Citizen. She is represented by Anne McDermid & Associates, and Jason Richman at UTA.       

    She has worked with Intel Labs, the Institute for the Future, SciFutures, Nesta, Data & Society, The Atlantic Council, the ASU Center for Science and the Imagination, and others. Her short fiction has appeared in Nature, FLURB, Tesseracts, Imaginarium, and Escape Pod. Her other essays and criticism have appeared at BoingBoing, io9, WorldChanging, Creators Project, Arcfinity, Tor.com, MISC Magazine, FutureNow, and elsewhere.      

    To learn more about this amazing Canadian author, visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE   

    GOODREADS  

    TWITTER       

    FACEBOOK   

    INSTAGRAM    

    LINKED IN       

    AMAZON.CA   

    AMAZON.COM      

    CHAPTERS      

    PUBLISHER’S WEBSITE     

    This children’s book celebrates individualism – I LOVE MY PURSE by Belle DeMont deserves 5 Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟  

    Title:  I LOVE MY PURSE

    Author: BELLE DeMONT    

    Illustrator: SONJA WIMMER         

    Genre: CHILDREN’S FICTION, CANADIAN FICTION, DIVERSE BOOKS

    Target Age Group: AGES 4 TO 7   

    Length: 36 PAGES

    Publisher: ANNICK PRESS 

    Type of Book: EBOOK

    Received From: NETGALLEY 

    Release Date: SEPTEMBER 12, 2017 

    ISBN: (Hardcover) 978-1-55451-955-2

    ISBN: (EPUB) 979-1-55451-956-9 

    Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟


    DESCRIPTION & REVIEW:

    Charlie loves the bright red purse given to him by his Grandmother.

    One day he decides to wear the purse to school. His father sees him and tells him that boys don’t carry purses. Charlie reminds him how much he loves his inappropriate Hawaiian shirt.

    At school Charlie hears more of the same type of comments from friends, teachers and even the school crossing guard.

    When they ask why he is carrying the bright red handbag, he replies: “Because I love my purse.”

    This children’s book has wonderfully expressive illustrations that combine whimsy alongside reality. The illustrator has a true knack for drawing expressive faces and in using color to evoke emotion in movement.

    This book is one that needs to be on the shelf of every child. It celebrates individualism and helps teach kids that it is ok to be different. It celebrates not only children making choices for themselves, but also teaches them to stand up for what is important to them.

    The story is not just a life lesson, it is also a fun and funny book that will grab AND HOLD a young child’s attention from beginning to end. The writing style comes across as almost rhythmic.

    The author, Belle DeMont is Canadian and I love to support the many talented writers who live in Canada. 

    Canadian children’s books are among some of the best of all time.

    I rate this book as 5 out of 5 Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟     


    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Belle DeMont is an illustrator from the salt-licked city of Halifax, Nova Scotia.

    Her love of visual story telling brought her to the Nova Scotia college of Art and Design where she completed her BFA focussing on drawing. She then went on to do a certificate in digital illustration at Montreal’s Concordia University.

    Belle breathes life into simple line drawings and saturated colours.

    To learn more about this author visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE   

    GOODREADS    

    TWITTER    

    FACEBOOK     

    INSTAGRAM     

    AMAZON   

    CHAPTERS     


    ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR: 


    Sonja loves painting pictures and telling stories. After studying and working for some years as a graphic designer in her hometown of Munich and Brussels, she decided to pack her suitcase and move to Barcelona to study Illustration at the “Llotja” Arts and Crafts School.

    Since then she lives between brushes and all kinds of wonderful tales, working as a freelance illustrator for publishing houses and other clients around the world.

    Her work has won multiple awards including the 2012 International Latino Book Awards Second Place for Best Children’s Picture Book-English and the 2011 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards Gold Medal for Best Illustrator.

    Sonja eventually moved back to Germany where she now lives with her family near the German Alps between two rivers and surrounded by forests.

    To learn more about this illustrator, visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE       

     

    GOODREADS         
    FACEBOOK      
    AMAZON     

    CHAPTERS          

     

    Do you read Apocalyptic Fiction? Enjoy Dark Humor? THIS BOOK IS FOR YOU!   A is for Asteroids … Z is for Zombies – A Bedtime Book for the Coming Apocalypse – Written by Paul Lewis – Illustrated by the talented Kenneth Lamug. 5 Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

    Title: A IS FOR ASTEROIDS … Z IS FOR ZOMBIES   

    Subtitle: A BEDTIME BOOK FOR THE COMING APOCALYPSE

    Author: PAUL LEWIS    

    Illustrator: KENNETH KIT LAMUG      

    Genre: FICTION, APOCALYPTIC FICTION, HUMOR

    Length: 40 PAGES

    Publisher: ANDREWS McMEEL PUBLISHING    

    Type of Book: EBOOK    

    Received From: NETGALLEY    

    Release Date: OCTOBER 10, 2017   

    ISBN: 9781449486884

    Price: $14.99 USD (Hardcover)   

    Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟  

    DESCRIPTION:  

    Are you a fan of dark humor? What about zombies? Are you the type of person who reads everything you can about the Apocalypse?

    What about your kids? What do you tell them when they come home from school with questions about the future of our world? 

    Well, if you are anything like  author Paul Lewis, you create a faux-children’s book of ABC’s that allows you to list all the ways our civilization might end.

    The next step is to find an illustrator that can bring your vision to life. That is where KENNETH KIT LAMUG comes in.

    Between the twisted imaginings of Paul Lewis and the equally, if not more twisted illustrations of Kenneth Kit Lamug, what you end up with is an uproariously funny book that is sure to become an instant Bestseller. I for one will be purchasing several hardcover copies for myself and my friends.

    The fact that each page of the book is told in sing-song rhyming prose adds to the overall unreal quality of this hilarious book.  

    If I had the skills to write a book of this kind, this would be exactly how I would want it to turn out.

    What I want to say most, is that I recommend this book as highly as possible. If you do not add it to your must-buy list, then you will be missing out. In fact, I forsee many awards and accolades in this book’s future. Let’s just hope that Paul Lewis receives his rewards before one of his potential apocalyptic scenarios comes to pass.

    I give 5 out of 5 Stars for this highly imaginative, highly entertaining, and uproariously funny book. 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟   

    *I would like to say a special Thank You to Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book.  

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    PAUL LEWIS is an English professor at Boston College, the president of the Poe Studies Association, and the author of Cracking Up: American Humor in a Time of Conflict (U Chicago Press).

    A fascination with gothic fiction and horror films prepared him to publish “The Funeral Game” in Crazy Magazine while he was in graduate school, coin the word “Frankenfood” at the dawn of the GMO era, and write A Is for Asteroids, Z Is for Zombies.

    As a freelance writer, Lewis has published op-ed and humor pieces in leading newspapers.

    To learn more visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

    AMAZON    

    CHAPTERS    

    PUBLISHER’S WEBSITE   


    ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR: 

    Kenneth Lamug is an author/illustrator based in Las Vegas, Nevada.

    As a child, he made comics and books from scraps of used copy paper. Then, stopped drawing for the longest time when his entire family moved to the US from the Philippines.

    He finally got back to his creative roots and has been having loads of fun making books and comics for all-ages.

    Kenneth’s debut picture book “A Box Story” won the Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards, Literary Classics, Pinnacle Awards and the National Indie Excellence Book Awards.

     In 2014, he launched a Kickstarter campaign which funded the all-ages graphic adventure book, “The Tall Tales of Talbot Toluca.” 

    His most recent books include the macabre children’s fairytale, “The Stumps of Flattop Hill” (One Peace Books) and the parenting parody book, “HURTS LIKE A MOTHER” (Doubleday).

    Kenneth is a husband, and father of three rabble rousing boys.


    AWARDS KENNETH LAMUG HAS WON: 

    2016 SCBWI National Postcard Contest Winner   

    * 2016 Children’s Book Academy Golden Ticket Winner

    * 2016 Literary Classics (The Stumps of Flattop Hill)  

    2014 Moonbeam Children’s Awards Graphic Novel (Talbot Toluca Quest For The Ore Crystals)

    * 2014 National Indie Excellence Awards (Talbot Toluca Quest For The Ore Crystals)

    * 2012 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards (A Box Story)  

    * 2012 Literary Classics Seal of Approval (A Box Story)  

    * 2012 Nation Indie Excellence Awards Finalist (A Box Story)

    * 2012 Pinnacle Awards (A Box Story)

    To learn more about this amazing illustrator, visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE

    GOODREADS 

    TWITTER     

    FACEBOOK   

    INSTAGRAM    

    CHAPTERS        
    PUBLISHER’S WEBSITE   

       

    THE LAST NEANDERTHAL by Claire Cameron – The best prehistoric fiction book since “Clan of the Cave Bear”

    Title: THE LAST NEANDERTHAL

    Author: CLAIRE CAMERON    

    Genre: FICTION, HISTORICAL FICTION

    Length: 272 PAGES     

    Publisher: PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE 

    Type of Book: AUTOGRAPHED HARDCOVER

    Book Jacket Designer: GREGG KULICK

    Purchased From: BOOK LORE – An Independent Book Store located in Orangeville, Ontario
    Release Date: APRIL 2017   

    ISBN: 978-0-385-68678-5    

    Price: $29.95 CDN (HARDCOVER)

    Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

    MY REVIEW:

    When was the last time you pondered the similarities between Neanderthals and modern man? If you’re scratching your head because you can’t remember, you are not alone. Before reading THE LAST NEANDERTHAL by CLAIRE CAMERON, I hadn’t thought about Neanderthals since reading CLAN OF THE CAVE BEAR by Jean M. Auel many, many years ago.

    In this book, Archaeologist Rosamund (Rosa) Gale makes an astounding discovery that just might change everything we thought we knew about Neanderthals.

    The book flips back and forth between Rosa’s story and that of a Neanderthal simply called, “Girl.”

    Most people view Neanderthals as little more than savage beasts who just happen to look like us. However, if that were true, why do so many people contain traces of Neanderthal DNA.

    I enjoyed reading Girl’s story and there are many parallels between her story and that of Rosa Gale.

    I rate this book as 5 out of 5 Stars. 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 I believe this book will get people talking and that is always a good thing.

    FAVORITE QUOTE:

    “Their lives together had slipped away as the ice breaks from the river in the Spring. It does not melt off in a slow thaw. Instead, a series of deep cracks destabilizes the structure. When it goes, large chunks get pulled away all at once. And in the span of a day, before disbelieving eyes, the ice is gone. But underneath the river is the same…”

    ABOUT THE BOOK JACKET DESIGNER:

    GREGG KULICK is a graphic designer and art director at HarperCollins in New York City. He lives in Clinton Hill in Brooklyn.  

    To see more book covers designed by him visit his official website HERE.
     

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Photo by David Kerr

    (COPIED FROM THE AUTHOR’S WEBSITE)

    When I was young I read The Clan of the Cave Bear and watched “Quest for Fire,” but Neanderthals felt as distant as dinosaurs. In school I was taught Neanderthals were an evolutionary step between the apes and us—hairy, primitive knuckle-draggers.

    In 2010, a team sequenced a first draft of the Neanderthal genome and made an extraordinary discovery. Modern humans of European and Asian descent have inherited between 1-4% of their DNA from Neanderthals. Most scientists agree this is evidence of interbreeding between the two groups. Rather than a more evolved version of Neanderthals, we are close cousins.

    But we think of ourselves as the ones who drove the Neanderthals to extinction, rather than having sex with them. So how did modern humans and Neanderthals make contact? We can’t know the answer, but a novelist should take on the risk involved in imagining one.

    I worked with experts and used the new science of Neanderthals like a set of rules, or creative constraints, to build the story. My experience living and working in the outdoors gave me some insight into how surviving in the wild might have felt more than 40,000 years ago.

    My novel is about Neanderthals, but it’s also a story that questions what it means to be human.

    To learn more about this talented Canadian author who currently resides in Toronto, Ontario, visit the following links:

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE      

    GOODREADS     

    TWITTER     

    FACEBOOK     

    INSTAGRAM        

    AMAZON       

    CHAPTERS     

    Read The New York Times Book Review HERE.

    HASHTAGS:

    @penguinrandom @PenguinBooks @PenguinCanada @randomhouse @RandomHouseCA ⠀
    @doubledaybooks @littlebrown

     #clairecameron #bookface #instabook #bookstagram #indiebookstore #readlocal #toronto #torontoauthors #canlit #thelastneanderthal #canadianauthor #readandreview #newbook #newrelease #mustread #book #bookblogger #tbr #tbrlist #bookstagrammer #fiction #bookreview #bookreviewer #booklorebookstore #CanadianPride #Canadian #instagramhub #instalike #thefinchbook #neanderthal #historicalfiction #Amiesbookreviews #Amiesbookreview #history
    #archaeology #canadianauthors #randomhouse #readandreview #newbook #newrelease #mustread #bookblogger #bookreviewer #bookblog 

    LOVE, ISH by Karen Rivers is a unique and engaging middle-grade novel that should be read by all ages. 

    Title: LOVE-ISH    

    Author: KAREN RIVERS     

    Genre: MIDDLE GRADE FICTION

    Length: 236 PAGES

    Publisher: DANCING CAT BOOKS   

    Type of Book: SOFTCOVER

    Received From: THE AUTHOR  

    Release Date: APRIL 22, 2017 

    ISBN: 978-1-77086-492-4   

    Price: $12.95 CDN    

    Rating: 4 OUT OF 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟 
    DESCRIPTION:

    Mischa “Ish” Love knows she’ll be one of the first settlers on Mars. She’s applied to – and been rejected from – the Mars Now project forty-seven times, but the mission won’t leave for ten years, and Ish hasn’t given up hope. She also hasn’t given up hope that Tig will be her best friend again. 

    When Ish collapses on the first day of seventh grade, she gets a diagnosis that threatens all her future plans. As Ish fights cancer, she dreams in vivid detail about the Martian adventures she’s always known she’d have – and makes unexpected discoveries about love, fate, and her place in the world. 


    MY REVIEW:

    Most Middle-grade books, especially those targeted at female readers, seem to contain little more than what I call “fluff.”

    From their stereotypical pink covers to the oh so dreamy boy the main character has a crush on, Middle-Grade books for girls SUCK!!!

    I LOVE that LOVE, ISH is different from any other book targeted at Middle-grade readers.

    The cover of this book is awesome. It shows off Ish’s long red hair, and the artist’s decision to have her standing on the globe of Earth and looking towards Mars is 100% perfection.

    I was not as happy with the description on the back of the book as I was with it’s cover. It does not really do this book justice, but I have the feeling that this was done on purpose to grab the interest of the target age group. Once they begin reading and are pulled into the story, they will realize that this book is truly one of a kind. Readers will discover that even though there are some very serious issues discussed in this book, they will want to keep reading despite the fact that they will be learning in the process.

    Parents who do not try to keep their middle-grade children in a bubble and who realize that kids are a lot smarter than most people give them credit for, will want to buy this book for their sons and their daughters. Just because the protagonist is female, does not mean that this is a girl’s book. In fact, both boys and girls will be able to relate to Ish and to her struggle to find her place in the world [or, maybe on Mars instead.]

    The writing style of author KAREN RIVERS draws middle-grade readers into the story instantaneously. Her knowledge of what clothing and footwear appeal to this age group is an example of her attention to detail, sibling rivalry and the jealousies that seem petty to adults but feel so very important to tweens and teens are another example.

    Ish’s dream is to be the first woman/girl to live on Mars. In pursuit of this goal, she has read anything and everything that she could get her hands on that has to do with Mars and about the difficulties of colonizing a new planet.

    I love that this book encourages readers to dream big. Ish found a website where people can apply to be part of the first Mars colony expedition. She is only twelve years old and has already applied more than 40 times. She has received a rejection every time so far, but she will not give up hope. She plans to keep applying until they finally accept her. The message implied by Ish’s actions is twofold. First, young people have dreams and aspirations and should be encouraged to follow those dreams, no matter how unlikely they seem. Secondly, the message to others is to be tenacious, and to not allow setbacks (or the opinions of others) to stop you from pursuing your dreams.

    This book deserves a very high rating. There is so much contained in it’s pages that is unlike any other middle-grade book on the market. In fact, even though the target readership is ages 10 through 15, I believe that readers of all ages will fall ìn love with LOVE, ISH and that upon completion, they will recommend it to their friends and families. 

    I rate this book as 4 out of 5 Stars in the Middle-grade Fiction category.    🌟🌟🌟🌟

    FAVORITE QUOTES:

    “Living with Elliott is sort of like coexisting with a talking, breathing shard of broken glass. You never know when it’s going to poke you in the foot and leave you bleeding all over the clean floor.”


    “My brain is basically a salad spinner, whirling unrelated ideas.”


    “The thing with chemo is that it is the worst and also, it sucks all the energy out of me, leaving me as floppy as a piece of paper. I feel like I’m constantly carrying something heavy, but that heavy thing is me.” 


    ***** CAUTION *****


    *****STOP READING THIS REVIEW NOW IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO KNOW WHAT ISSUES ARE BROUGHT UP IN “LOVE, ISH.” *****

    So, if you are reading this, you have decided that you want to know. Good for you! I would have made the same choice.

    Some very important social issues are discussed in LOVE, ISH. Some of these are discussed below: 

    Ish lives on the shores of a lake in California and, just like in real life, the lake is getting smaller and smaller. 

    In fact, the lake pictured below is called Lake Cachuma which is Santa Barbara’s primary water source. According to the New York Times, it is currently only at 7% capacity and is expected to dry up completely by the end of 2017. 

    – Above is a picture of Lake Cachuma as it is today.

    – Below is a picture of that same lake when it was full of water. The difference is staggering. 


    [To learn more about California’s very real and extremely terrifying present-day water crisis, click 
    HERE]    

    Not only is the lake water disappearing, but before that started happening, a large chemical company located on the opposite side of the lake from Ish’s home, spilled a large amount of toxic waste into the lake. 

    Ish even mentions the fact that the water changed to a bright blue color for several weeks after the incident.
    Unfortunately, this type of corporate negligence happens way too often in our world today. 

    It is an issue that our children will be left to try to remedy when they grow up. Not only that, but the polluted water can (and often does) end up entering into the water that comes from the taps in our homes. Recent news stories regarding the tainted water supply in Michigan prove that this is very much a relevant and legitimate problem. 

     
    This will not only affect our children in the future, but it can cause very real, and very scary health problems, right now. 

    What happens to Ish (being diagnosed with a brain tumor) could, in fact, have been due to the toxic spillage into the lake behind her house. This possibility is not explicitly mentioned  in the book, but astute readers will pick up on it anyway. 


    [To learn more about recent toxic spills into lakes, rivers and oceans click 
    HERE

    Ish passes out on her first day of middle-school and it is discovered that she has a brain tumor. She undergoes chemotherapy and radiation treatments and the author does not shy away from writing about the aftereffects of those treatments.

    “The thing with chemo is that it is the worst and also, it sucks all the energy out of me, leaving me as floppy as a piece of paper. I feel like I’m constantly carrying something heavy, but that heavy thing is me.”

    I cannot think of any other middle-grade book that writes so openly and honestly about this topic. In other middle-grade books, if cancer is mentioned at all, the authors usually gloss over the details, and, almost always, the cancer sufferer is an adult, not a child. It is my opinion that by doing this, we are doing a disservice to our children. With the prevalence of cancer in today’s society, it is likely that most children will experience cancer in some way; whether it is a friend, or a family member, or even just the old lady who lives down the street.


    [To learn more about childhood cancers click 
    HERE]

    I give HUGE Kudos to Author KAREN RIVERS for writing such an important and yet entertaining novel. I hope everyone who reads this review runs out and buys her book immediately. 

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR Information was taken directly from the author’s website. 

    Q & A About Karen Rivers

    Where were you born?

    I was born in Nanaimo, BC, on June 12, 1970.  

    Where do you live?

    I live in a little green house in Victoria, BC with two kids, two dogs, and two birds.  

    Where did you go to school?

    I did most of my schooling in Victoria.  After I graduated, I went to UVic for a couple of years, then I went to UBC and ended up with a degree in International Relations (‘91) and most of a degree in Physiology, that I never quite finished.  

    Why did you become a writer?

    I became a writer because I didn’t have any other choice. Every time I tried to stop writing, a new idea would pop into my head.  Sometimes I wish I had a job with regular hours (and a regular paycheque!) but mostly I feel incredibly lucky to be able to tell my stories for a living.

    Where do you get your titles?

    I don’t know!  Much like writing the books, I think a lot of it is magic.  And sometimes, my editor comes up with a much better title, so we use that one instead!   Writing a book is like being part of a big team.

    What were you like when you were a kid?

    Karen at age 10

    I was a bookworm. I read so many books, it was ridiculous. Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of books. I was also really skinny. When I was nine, I got glasses. Big glasses. It was the 1970s and/or 1980s, so that’s what glasses looked like. I had a lot of bad haircuts. I blushed a lot. I never knew how to do a cartwheel. I thought they’d teach us at school but it turned out everyone else knew how to do one before they even got there! I was pretty quiet and very shy. I think I was sometimes funny, too. I was always competitive so I got good grades. I think at different stages of my life, I was a lot like some of my characters.  I still am.  I think we are all always every age that we’ve ever been, like the layers of an onion. 

    What’s your favourite book for kids?

    For a long time, I avoided reading kids’ books or YA at all because I thought if I read someone else’s book, I might think my own books didn’t measure up and I would be filled with self-doubt.  I hate to think about all the great books that I missed by worrying about that.  Now I read a lot of YA and Middle Grade, so much that I have a hard time picking a favourite, but today I”m going to say that Rebecca Stead’s WHEN YOU REACH ME is topping the list.     

    Are you married?

    No.

    Do you have any pets?

    Yes.  I have a dog named Happy and a dog named Augie.  They are rescue dogs.  And I have two birds, named Herbert and Feisty.   

    Do you write every day?

    Yes.  Even if I don’t actually write it down, I’m always thinking about the book that I’m working on, and trying to unravel all the tangly bits.  

    Writing every day is necessary to keep me from panicking.  It makes me feel more sane than when I don’t write every day. But I do take some days off.  That’s life!  You can say, “Oh, every day I will drink 8 glasses of water!”  But the truth is, some days you just aren’t that thirsty.  The same is true for writing. 

    What’s your favourite of your books?

    I’m so proud of all of them for different reasons, I could never pick a favourite.  Usually my most favourite is the one I’m working on right now.

    What’s your favourite colour?

    Green.

    Lucky numbers?

    3. And 14.  And, of course, 42.

    Favourite ice cream?

    Coconut


    To learn more about this amazing Canadian author visit the following links: 

    OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

    GOODREADS      

    TWITTER     

    FACEBOOK   

    INSTAGRAM       

    AMAZON       

    CHAPTERS    

    PUBLISHER’S WEBSITE   

    UPCOMING EVENT – On Saturday, May 28th attend the Elora Writer’s Festival

    Photo by Peter Veraldi

    Elora Writer’s Festival (since 1994)

    2017 Line-up: 

    The Elora Writer’s Festival has already found five great authors – and all of them jumped at the chance to join the annual celebration of great Canadian writing on Sunday, May 28 at Aboyne Hall, Wellington County Museum & Archives. 

    Lots more details to come, but here’s a quick look at the Festival 2017 line-up:

    Adrienne Kress has a slew of juvenile and YA Fantasy/Steampunk titles out there and, to top it off, she’s an actress too. Her Steampunk adventure The Friday Society, was released to a starred review from Quill and Quire and optioned for film. Read more about Adrienne here:

    http://www.adriennekress.com/author/


    Rio Youers is back – yes! That Rio! A writer right in our neighbourhood, whose new book, The Forgotten Girl, will appear shortly after our festival. Expect a preview! And if you want to see more of Rio’s impressive list of publications, check out his website, here:

    http://rioyouers.com/


    Poetry makes a return to our line-up, with Windsor’s Mary Ann Mulhern. Her first collection, The Red Dress, was inspired by her life in the convent, and now, no longer a nun, she tackles some of life’s difficult questions in her writing. Here’s a short video that offers insight into Mary Ann and her poetry:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lduBVQHsCAk&feature=youtu.be


    Brad Smith returns to Elora with more of his country-noir good-guys-vs-bad-guys thrillers. The first in the Carl Burns series, Rough Justice, hit the stands last February, and the next installment will arrive in February 2017, just in time for us to get reading and ready for his second appearance at our Festival. (And some of you may remember him from our first Books & Beer too, photo above, with Q&A guru, Dave Beynon… )  Read about Brad’s background here: 

    http://www.bradsmithbooks.com/biography.php


    And to complete the list, Andrew Westoll – another returnee, because he wowed us in 2013 (see photo, above. That’s Andrew, far left) – brings his first novel to share. Remember Andrew? He’s the author of the award-winningThe Riverbones, as well as the memoir The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary. Now he’s turned to fiction with The Jungle South of the Mountain. Yes, there will be primates. Can’t wait!

    Read more about Andrew, here:

    http://andrewwestoll.com/bio/

    There you have it – the line-up of authors for the Elora Writer’s Festival 2017. Mark your calendars for Sunday, May 28th. 


    Photo by Peter Veraldi


    Everything you need to know about tickets to Festival 2017   

    The 2017 Elora Writers’ Festival is just around the corner and tickets ($25) are now available. Here’s everything you need to know to be part of the action on Sunday, May 28, 1-4 p.m:

    Pay a visit to Roxanne – or give her a call:

    Visit Roxanne’s Reflections Book & Card Shop, 152 St. Andrew St. West in Fergus to purchase your tickets. Or call Roxanne at 519-843-4391 to reserve your tickets, which can be picked up at the store or will be waiting for you at the front door of Aboyne Hall, Wellington County Museum & Archives on the day of the festival, whatever works for you.

    Order Online from our partners at The Fergus Grand Theatre:

    Easy, easy, easy. Follow this link to the ticket-ordering page:

    Fergus Grand Theatre – 2017 Elora Writers’ Festival

    Show up at the door of Aboyne Hall, Wellington County Museum & Archives on Sunday, May 28 at about 12:45 p.m.:

    Walk up to our ticket table, pull out $25, take your ticket and walk right in!

    Your ticket entitles you to an afternoon of readings and a crowd-pleasing Q&A with this year’s authors, Rio Youers, Andrew Westoll, Adrienne Kress, Brad Smith and Mary Ann Mulhern.

    Oh yes, and there’s one beer (thanks to our sponsors, Wellington Brewery) and nibbles (supplied by local Fergus eatery, The Fountainhead), and books to buy at our mini-bookstore, authors to chat with and a room full of like-minded book-lovers to meet.

    All you need is a ticket, it’s that’s easy!

    I will definitely be attending. I hope that if any of you reading this are planning to go to the Festival, we can introduce ourselves to each other.

    Hope to see you there!!! 

    Photo by Peter Veraldi

    Photo by David Wilcox

    TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS FESTIVAL CLICK HERE