Thursday 14 October 2021

2021 Governor General's Literary Awards: Finalists announced


Today, the Canada Council for the Arts announced the finalists for the highly prestigious Governor General's Literary Awards.

The seven categories of books, both in French and English, for which awards are given are:
  • Fiction
  • Non-Fiction
  • Poetry
  • Young People's Literature (Text)
  • Young People's Literature (Illustration)
  • Drama
  • Translation

Congratulations to the finalists 
of all the awards
and I present here those of
works for young people.

English-language: Young People's Literature (Text)

Blood Like Magic
Written by Liselle Sambury
Margaret K. McElderry Books / Simon & Schuster

The Fabulous Zed Watson
Written by Kevin Sylvester and Basil Sylvester


Written by Philippa Dowding

Peter Lee's Notes From the Field
Written by Angela Ahn

Written by Sharon Jennings
Red Deer Press

English-language: Young People's Literature (Illustration)

The Library Bus
Written by Bahram Rahman
Illustrated by Gabrielle Grimard
Pajama Press

Mii maanda ezhi-gkendmaanh/This is How I Know
Written by Brittany Luby
Illustrated by Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley
Translated by Alvin Ted Corbiere and Alan Corbiere
Groundwood Books
Reviewed here
On the Trapline
Written by David A. Robertson
Illustrated by Julie Flett
Out Into the Big Wide Lake
Written by Paul Harbridge
Illustrated by Josée Bisaillon

The Wind and the Trees
Written and illustrated by Todd Stewart
Owlkids Books

French-language: Young People's Literature (Text)

Les avenues

Written by Jean-François Sénéchal
Leméac Éditeur

Comme un ouragan

Written by Jonathan Bécotte
Les éditions Héritage

Le Dernier Viking

Written by Mario Fecteau
Les Éditions du Boréal

Stella, qu'est-ce que tu fais là?
(Tome 1)
Written by Sandra Sirois
Éditions Hurtubise

Tara voulait jouer
Written by Frédérick Wolfe
Leméac Éditeur

French-language: Young People's Literature (Illustration)

À qui appartiennent les nuages?

Written by Mario Brassard
Illustrated by Gérard DuBois
Les Éditions de la Pastèque

Bouées: dérives identitaires, amours imaginaires et détours capillaires

Written and illustrated by Catherine Lepage
Les Éditions de la Pastèque 
La langue au chat et autres poèmes pas bêtes

Written by François Gravel
Illustrated by Laurent Pinabel
Éditions Les 400 coups

Ma maison-tête

Written and illustrated by Vigg

Le tricot

Written and illustrated by Jacques Goldstyn
Les Éditions de la Pastèque

Winning titles will be announced 
on November 17, 2021.

Tuesday 1 June 2021

2020 Governor General Literary Awards: Winners announced

Today, the Canada Council for the Arts announced the winners for the Governor General's Literary Awards for books published in 2020.

Please join me in congratulating this year's winners in the two categories for young readers. 

Young People's Literature -  Text

The King of Jam Sandwiches
Written by Eric Walters
Orca Book Publishers

Young People's Literature - Illustrated Books

The Barnabus Project
Written and illustrated by The Fan Brothers 
(Eric Fan, Terry Fan and Devin Fan)
Tundra Books

2021 Hackmatack Awards: Winners announced

On May 30th, the winners of the 2021 Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Awards were announced in an online presentation broadcast on YouTube and on the Hackmatack Facebook Page. These awards are the all more special because young readers ages 9-12 in Atlantic Canada selected the winners from nominated lists.
Congratulations to the winners!
Award for English Nonfiction: 
Beastly Puzzles
Written by Rachel Poliquin 
Illustrated by Byron Eggenschwiler
Kids Can Press

Award for English Fiction: 
Pickles vs. the Zombies
Written by Angela Misri

Award for French Nonfiction:
Dragouilles 21 : Les Vertes de Honolulu
Written by Karine Gottot
Illustrated by Maxim Cyr
Éditions Michel Quintin

Award for French Fiction: 
Trucs de peur 1: Perdues dans le noir
Written by Alexandra Larochelle 
Illustrated by Yohann Morin
La Bagnole 

Monday 31 May 2021

2020 IODE Jean Throop Book Award: Shortlist and Winner

Since 1974, IODE, the Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire,  a women’s charitable organization that provides education support, community service and citizenship programs, has awarded the Jean Throop Book Award to encourage excellence in children’s literature. Originally awarded by the Municipal Chapter of Toronto IODE, the IODE Jean Throop Book Award is now funded from the IODE Toronto Legacy Fund and administered by IODE Ontario.

In March, IODE announced its shortlist for the Jean Throop Book Award. Congratulations to these picture book nominees published in 2020.

What If Bunny's Not a Bully?
Written by Lana Button
Illustrated by Christine Battuz
Kids Can Press

What Grew in Larry's Garden
Written by Laura Alary
Illustrated by Kass Reich
Kids Can Press
Reviewed here

The Nut That Fell from the Tree
Written by Sangeeta Bhadra
Illustrated by France Cormier
Kids Can Press

Scrub: How a Simple Soap Saved the Day
Written by Suzanne Belliveau
Illustrated by Jennifer Thornhill
Captus Creations

Fast Friends
Written by Heather M. O'Connor
Illustrated by Claudia Dávila
Scholastic Canada 
The winner of the 2020 IODE Jean Throop Book Award is...
What Grew in Larry's Garden
Written by Laura Alary
Illustrated by Kass Reich
Kids Can Press
32 pp.
Ages 4-7
to all nominated authors and illustrators 
and to the winners!

Friday 21 May 2021

2021 Chocolate Lily Award Winners announced



Recently the 2021 Chocolate Lily Award Winners were announced to celebrate the work of children's authors and illustrators who live in British Columbia. Here are this year's winners, in the three categories.

Novel Category: Winner

Written by Pam Withers 
Dundurn Press


Chapter Book/Early Novel Category: Winner

Sophie Trophy
Written by Eileen Holland
Illustrated by Brooke Kerrigan 
Crwth Press


Picture Book Category: Winner

Princess Puffybottom...and Darryl 
Written by Susin Nielsen 
Illustrated by Olivia Chin Mueller 
Penguin Random House Canada Young Reader
Congratulations to all winners!

Thursday 20 May 2021

2021 Forest of Reading® Awards: Winners and Honour Books announced



It's the second year into the pandemic and again things at the Forest of Reading have had to be a little different. But kids have still been reading books nominated for the Ontario Library Association's Forest of Reading's readers' choice award programs and voting on their favourites. Again, rather than announcing the awards at the annual Festival of Trees, an enthusiastic but crowded event at Toronto's Harbourfront or at satellite celebrations around the province, this year's award ceremonies were held online, hosted by CBC Books on, an educational streaming platform (normally subscription based). Fortunately, these ceremonies, hosted by comic Ali Hassan, were posted for all to see. Judging by the faces of the authors and illustrators and young readers who spoke, the event was a resounding success, as always.

Here are this year's winners for each reading program. The ceremonies for all books were held on May 18, 19 and 20, and the screenshots of attending authors and illustrators were taken from these presentations. The presentations can be viewed at for the English-language awards and at for the French-language awards.


Bad Dog
Written and illustrated by Mike Boldt
Doubleday Books for Young Readers

Honour Books:


Written and illustrated by Kim Smith

Fast Friends

Written by Heather O'Connor
Illustrated by Claudia Dávila
Scholastic Canada

Peter & Ernesto: Sloths in the Night
Written and illustrated by Graham Annable
First Second

Honour Books:

Planet Hockey: First Star of the Game

Written by J. Torres
Illustrated by Tim Levins
Scholastic Canada


Terry Fox and Me

Written by Mary Beth Leatherdale
Illustrated by Milan Pavlović

The Jigsaw Puzzle King
Written by Gina McMurchy-Barber

Honour Books:

Ember and the Ice Dragons

Written by Heather Fawcett
Published by HarperCollins

Music for Tigers
Written by Michelle Kadarusman
Pajama Press

Trending: How and Why Stuff Gets Popular
Written by Kira Vermond
Illustrated by Clayton Hanmer
Owlkids Books

Honour Books:

The Boreal Forest
Written by L. E. Carmichael
Illustrated by Josée Bisaillon
Kids Can Press

Science Comics: Crows, Genius Birds

Written and Illustrated by Kyla Vanderklugt
First Second

Written by Kenneth Oppel
HarperCollins Canada

Honour Books:

Broken Strings
Written by Eric Walters and Kathy Kacer
Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers

Sara and the Search for Normal
Written by Wesley King
Paula Wiseman Books

Hunted By the Sky
Written by Tanaz Bhathena
Penguin Random House Canada

Honour Books:

Charming as a Verb
Written by Ben Philippe


Like a Love Story
Written by Abdi Nazemian

Pas moi
Écrit et Illustré par Elise Gravel
Éditions Scholastic 

Honour Books/Livres distingués:

Madame Grisemine et le petit chenapan

Écrit par Marie-Francine Hébert
Illustré par Mathieu Lampron
Éditions de la Bagnole 

Mon chien-banane
Écrit par Roxane Brouillard
Illustré par Giulia Sagramola
Éditions les 400 coups

Sergent Billy : La vraie histoire du chevreau devenu soldat
Écrit par Mireille Messier
Illustré par Kass Reich
Éditions de l’Isatis

Honour Books/Livres distingués:

La Case 144

Écrit par Nadine Poirier
Illustré par Geneviève Després
Éditions D’eux

Juré, craché! 03 : Nés pour la gloire
Écrit par Carine Paquin
Illustré par Jean Morin
Éditions Petit Homme


Lac Adélard
Écrit par François Blais
Illustré par Iris
La courte échelle

Honour Books/Livres distingués:

Enterrer la lune
Écrit par Andrée Poulin
Illustré par Sonali Zohra
La courte échelle

@Raphaël_Cascadeur: Les productions 100 dangers
Écrit et illustré par Éric Péladeau
Éditions Z’ailées 

The announcement of all winners is available at the Ontario Library Association's Forest of Reading® website.


Congratulations to everyone!