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Posts Tagged ‘canlit-for-littlecanadians’

CanLit for LittleCanadians reviews Dance of the Banished

Posted on August 22nd, 2014 by pajamapress

DanceOfTheBanished_HR_RGBDance of the Banished is an old tale.  It’s the familiar love story in which two young people are separated, here by family, distance and war.  But, sadly, it’s also the story of prejudice, fear, and injustice, and the subsequent torment that intensifies that separation.  Dance of the Banished may be an old story in its foundations, but its context is wholly unique, expertly researched and penned by award-winning author Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch…By creating legitimate characters in her fiction who bring varied and personal perspectives to the situations experienced and who speak through their questions and confusions and convictions, Marsha Skrypuch can tell the whole story, not just the public one….And we are grateful for that opportunity and bold honesty.”

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A Brush Full of Colour is “larger than life – CanLit for LittleCanadians

Posted on August 19th, 2014 by pajamapress

ABrushFullOfColour_HR_RGB“…this book is virtually larger than life. Within a scant 40 pages, the authors share Ted Harrison’s progression from the coal-mining County Durham in England, to art school and military service post-WWII, teaching, immigration to Canada, and full-time artistry…A Brush Full of Colour is an exemplary youngCanLit biography having: informative text, organized well under headings such as Childhood, Travelling the World, Life in the North, and A Full-Time Artist; an assortment of visuals, including photographs and samples of Ted Harrison’s artwork throughout his career; quotes from the artist; and key features of non-fiction texts such as a table of contents, index and resources section…”
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CanLit for LittleCanadians reviews Bear on the Homefront

Posted on July 17th, 2014 by pajamapress

BearOnTheHomefront_Internet“…Inspired by events recounted in Aileen Rogers’ diary, Bear on the Homefront takes Teddy out of the war zone but still working to comfort those impacted by war. And by giving Teddy a voice, Stephanie Innes (the great niece of Aileen Rogers) and Harry Endrulat have endeared the little bear with even more heart than his simple form may suggest.  His longing for Aileen and his honest reflections are not dissimilar to the children’s own, though they all recognize the value in perseverance, even if it is difficult.

The text and atmospheric oil on canvas illustrations of Brian Deines lend an authenticity to the memories held within Bear on the Homefront.  Teddy has an important story to tell…For his heroic efforts in comforting and giving voice to others when their own words and thoughts probably failed them, Teddy is now safe and treasured at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa.  So, Bear at the Homefront gives us one more happy ending from a time when there weren’t many.”

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CanLit for LittleCanadians enjoys Peach Girl

Posted on June 17th, 2014 by pajamapress

PeachGirl_C“…Based on a traditional Japanese folktale about a peach boy named Momotaro who fights demons, Raymond Nakamura updates the story with a strong female protagonist as an activist, rather than a warrior.  Her no-nonsense attitude and tact are the armaments of her endeavour, ones she embodies rather than carries.

…Momoko’s disregard for rumours and the directness of her engagement with everyone, from her parents to the animals and the ogre, can certainly teach us all a lesson or two.  With fortitude and respect (she never negates the animals’ stories of the ogre), and a healthy dose of trust, Momoko is able to make a start on creating a better world.”

— Helen Kubiw

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“McNicoll…never submits to the predictable”—CanLit for LittleCanadians on Revenge on the Fly

Posted on April 25th, 2014 by pajamapress

RevengeFly_C_Dec5.indd“…Award-winning author Sylvia McNicoll who has penned numerous early chapter books, middle grade fiction and YA fiction, never submits to the predictable, in her storylines or characters. In Revenge on the Fly, Will, Fred, Ginny, Rebecca, Bea, Ian and Da have the true voices of individuals, never cardboard cut-outs. Even Finnigan has the yips and yaps of a true character, albeit a canine one. And while the ending is gratifying, it isn’t the all-tied-up-in-bows happy ending, because life isn’t like that and in 1912 it definitely wasn’t like that for poor Irish immigrants. Effortlessly Sylvia McNicoll finds the words to illustrate a tragic, but seemingly peculiar, episode in Canadian history and make it personal and unforgettable.”

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CanLit for LittleCanadians reviews Deborah Ellis’ Moon at Nine

Posted on February 20th, 2014 by pajamapress

MoonAtNine_C_Oct5.indd“…Deborah Ellis is Canada’s most modest and accomplished author of social justice stories for young people, and Moon at Nine can be added to that auspicious collection.  Based on a true story, the girls’ relationship in Moon at Nine is personal and precious but never explicit, unlike the merciless response of others to it.  Prohibited love may be ill-fated, but in the 1980’s Iran of secrets, surveillance and suppression,  it was perilous.  Still, in Moon at Nine, Deborah Ellis thoughtfully embeds a sliver of chaste love into that dispiriting world and, without contriving an unrealistic happy ending, offers a glimmer of possibility.”

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The Stowaways “re-introduces readers to the charm of family stories” — CanLit for LittleCanadians

Posted on November 26th, 2013 by pajamapress

TheStowaways_C_July14.indd“Meghan Marentette re-introduces readers to the charm of family stories that don’t rely on preachy social commentary, unending action, or shock and violence to grab readers’ attentions. The appeal of these books, as with The Stowaways, lies in the bonds of family and friendship, and steadfastness of loyalty and compassion. With the inspired selection of Dean Griffiths as illustrator, the genial nature of the story and characters are even more compounded. While the elements of fantasy allow the delightful Stowaways (the family) to speak, build bicycles, and make Juneberry Paste, it’s their solidarity and amiability, courtesy of Meghan Marentette and Dean Griffiths, that elevates The Stowaways (the book) to its unconventional but quaint familial richness.”

— Helen K.

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Nat the Cat Can Sleep Like That “perfect for getting your own little ones to bed” — CanLit for LittleCanadians

Posted on September 3rd, 2013 by pajamapress

Tara Anderson[‘s illustrations]… demonstrate her knack for felines. Coupled with Victoria Allenby‘s simple but zippy rhyming story, Nat the Cat Can Sleep Like That is a delightful read, perfect for getting your own little ones to bed, whether they be human or feline.”

— Helen Kubiw

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Tweezle into Everything “has everything that makes a picture book right” —CanLit for LittleCanadians

Posted on August 13th, 2013 by pajamapress

“…The trick of putting a great picture book together is telling a story that has fluency with powerful but concise text and illustrations that complement the text. Tweezle into Everything has everything that makes a picture book right.  Stephanie McLellan has found the right words for the common dilemma of the youngest child in a family, surprising readers with an unexpected plot twist to Tweezle’s story, and Dean Griffiths has again brought the less-than-scary monsters to life.  If you’re reading this to your children, make sure to have them carefully note the details in the illustrations because Dean Griffiths does not fill space; every detail enhances the story and even hints at what Tweezle is up to.  If you’re anything like me, you’ll be delighted by the turnabout in the story, and close the cover with a smile on your face, for Tweezle and others (I can’t give it away), and for Stephanie McLellan and Dean Griffiths who’ve proven that big stories can come in few pages.”

—Helen Kubiw

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CanLit for LittleCanadians digs into Community Soup

Posted on May 27th, 2013 by pajamapress

“…Still putting her story into the joyous rhyme of a favourite nursery tale, Alma Fullerton enhances it with her three-dimensional artwork in mixed media with collages of paper cutouts creating a bounty of textures, teeming with the bold and evocative colours of a Kenyan community.  And the satisfaction of creating a dish cooperatively from the fruits (and vegetables) of their labour and successfully with solving the dilemma of the errant goats is all the greater, for the children and the readers…”

—HelenK

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