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Kids and Teen Blog

Tag: Kids Books

New Releases: Kids and Teen Highlights March 2015

by Dan
Kids + Picture Books + YA Fiction / March 06, 2015

Here's a look at just a few of the novels, picture books and poetry out this month for kids and teens



The Winner's Crime 

Marie Rutkoski

ISBN 9780374384708 | $20.50 cl

Book two of the dazzling Winner's Trilogy is a fight to the death as Kestrel risks betrayal of country for love.

A royal wedding is what most girls can only dream about. It means one celebration after another: balls, fireworks, and revelry until dawn. But to Kestrel it means living in a cage of her own making. As the wedding approaches, she aches to tell Arin the truth about her engagement—that she agreed to marry the crown prince just to guarantee Arin's freedom—if she could only trust him. Yet can she even trust herself? 


Ages 12+

Available Now


Chronicles of Nick #6

Sherrilyn Kenyon

ISBN 9781250063861 | $22.99 cl

The next novel in the bestselling Chronicles of Nick series from #1 New York Times bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon.

Zombies, demons, vampires, shapeshifters—another day in the life of Nick Gautier—and those are just his friends. But now that he's accepted the demon that lives inside him, he must learn to control it and temper the very emotions that threaten the lives of everyone he cares for. Something that's hard to do while trying to stay off the menus of those who want his head on a platter. 

Ages 12-18

Available March 31


The Tragic Age

Stephen Metcalfe

ISBN 9781250054418 | $21.99 cl

A brilliant, debut coming-of-age novel about a misanthropic young man learning to love, trust and truly be alive in an absurd world.

This is the story of Billy Kinsey, heir to a lottery fortune, part genius, part philosopher and social critic, full time insomniac and closeted rock drummer. Billy has decided that the best way to deal with an absurd world is to stay away from it. Do not volunteer. Do not join in. But Billy's life changes when two people enter his life. Twom Twomey, a charismatic renegade who believes that truly living means going a little outlaw, and Gretchen Quinn, who suggests to Billy that the world can be transformed by creative acts of the soul. Billy knows that one is leading him toward disaster and the other toward happiness. The problem is—Billy doesn't trust happiness. It's the age he's at. The tragic age. 

Ages 14-18

Available Now



How to Hypnotize a Tiger 

Poems About Just About Everything

Calef Brown

ISBN 9780805099287 | $20.50 cl

This is the first longer-format, middle-grade poetry collection from #1 New York Times bestselling author-illustrator Calef Brown. Moving away from the picture book format offers Calef the opportunity to tackle a variety of themes and poetry styles as well as reach a slightly older audience along the lines of Doug Florian and Shel Silverstein.

Ages 8-12

Available Now

The Boy Who Lost Fairyland

Catherynne M. Valente; illustrated by Ana Juan

ISBN 9781250023490 | $19.50 cl

Here is Book 4 of the 5-book New York Times-bestselling Fairyland series, which TIME Magazine calls "one of the most extraordinary works of fantasy published so far this century."

A young troll named Hawthorn is stolen from Fairyland by the Golden Wind, and becomes a changeling in our world, a place no less bizarre than Fairyland in his eyes. Left with a human family in Chicago, Hawthorn struggles with his troll nature and his changeling fate.

When he turns twelve, he stumbles upon a way back home, to a Fairyland changed and Hawthorn finds himself at the centre of a changeling revolution. 

Ages 10+

Available Now

The Whisper

The Riverman Trilogy #2

Aaron Starmer

ISBN 9780374363116 | $19.50 cl

The second book in the Riverman Trilogy is a twisting, turning, riveting roller coaster of a ride through a magical land where nothing is as it seems, and no one is to be trusted.

At the end of The Riverman, the first book in the Riverman Trilogy, twelve-year-old Alistair learns that his friend Fiona has been telling the truth about traveling to a magical land called Aquavania when she goes missing from their hometown of Thessaly, New York. Alistair knows her absence means that her soul has been stolen by a merciless stalker called the Riverman. Unless Alistair can travel to Aquavania to save her, Fiona may never return home. 

Ages 10+

Available Now


Farewell Floppy

Benjamin Chaud

ISBN 9781452137346 | $21.99 cl

It was the perfect plan: abandon pet rabbit Floppy in the woods and take a giant leap toward adulthood. Having a bunny that moonlights as a best friend is for babies, right? It's better to cut a pet loose, make new human friends, and not be so dependent on a floppy-eared fur ball bent on chewing electrical cords, right? If saying good-bye to Floppy is required to grow up, why does life without Floppy seem so wrong? From Benjamin Chaud, the critically acclaimed author/illustrator of The Bear's Song and The Bear's Sea Escape, comes this unforgettable, thought-provoking picture book about the power of unlikely friendships.

Ages 3-5

Available Now

Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt

Kate Messner; illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal

ISBN 9781452119366 | $22.50 cl

In this exuberant and lyrical follow-up to the award-winning Over and Under the Snow, discover the wonders that lie hidden between stalks, under the shade of leaves... and down in the dirt. Explore the hidden world and many lives of a garden through the course of a year! Up in the garden, the world is full of green-leaves and sprouts, growing vegetables, ripening fruit. But down in the dirt exists a busy world-earthworms dig, snakes hunt, skunks burrow-populated by all the animals that make a garden their home.

Ages 5-8

Available Now

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to School... 

Davide Cali; illustrated by Benjamin Chaud

ISBN 9781452131689 | $15.99 cl

First, some giant ants steal breakfast. Then there are the evil ninjas, massive ape, mysterious mole people, giant blob, and countless other daunting (and astonishing) detours along the way to school. Are these excuses really why this student is late? Or is there another explanation that is even more outrageous than the rest? From Davide Cali and Benjamin Chaud, the critically acclaimed author/illustrator team behind I Didn't Do My Homework Because... comes a fast-paced, actionpacked, laugh-out-loud story about finding the way to school despite the odds-and the unbelievable oddness!

Ages 6-9

Available Now

I Wish You More

Amy Krouse Rosenthal; illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld

ISBN 9781452126999 | $19.99 cl

Some books are about a single wish. Some books are about three wishes. The infallible team of Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld have combined their extraordinary talents to create this exuberant book of endless good wishes. Wishes for curiosity and wonder, for friendship and strength, laughter and peace. Whether celebrating life's joyous milestones, sharing words of encouragement, or observing the wonder of everyday moments, this sweet and uplifting book is perfect for wishers of every age.

Ages 5-8

Available March 31

Win a Winnie!

by Alisha
Kids / January 20, 2015

Raincoast Books is celebrating the launch of Winnie: The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh by giving away printer-fresh copies of the book via our Win A Winnie! contest. Participants in our online promotion include Zoomer Magazine, teacher-librarian book reviewers and parent bloggers like Lisa Evans of The Children’s Bookshelf. Lisa was the first to post her review and online contest—and she also interviewed author Sally M. Walker for an inside look behind the bear who inspired an international literary icon:

WINNIE: The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh
By Lisa Evans, The Children’s Bookshelf

Like many children, I grew up reading Winnie the Pooh stories and watching the loveable, honey-addicted bear on film. I had no idea at the time that Pooh was based on a real-life bear, purchased by a Canadian soldier during a short stop on a train ride across Canada during World War I.

Author Sally M. Walker tells the story of how the soldier’s pet became an international literary icon in her new book Winnie: The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh

The book follows Harry Colebourn, a veterinarian who enlisted in the Canadian military during the First World War. At a train station, Colebourn encounters a hunter with an orphaned bear cub. He buys the cub for $20, naming her “Winnie” after his hometown, Winnipeg. The loveable bear quickly becomes adopted as the soldiers’ mascot, and when the regiment is shipped out to England, Colebourn takes Winnie with him. But when the soldiers are needed on the front lines, Colebourn realizes he will have to give Winnie up and finds her a permanent home at the London Zoo.

It’s there at the zoo that Winnie begins her career entertaining children, including one young boy named Christopher Robin, who renames his own stuffed animal bear Winnie-the-Pooh, after the zoo bear. Christopher Robin’s father, the famous author A.A. Milne, is inspired by the bear and begins to create bedtime stories to tell Christopher Robin. These stories led to the famous book “Winnie-the-Pooh”, published in 1926.

This heartwarming tale is one that parents and children are sure to love. I always enjoy the opportunity to share a piece of my childhood with my son, and this tale doesn’t disappoint. The book blends illustrations that bring Winnie’s remarkable story to life and also includes real-life photos of Harry Colebourn and Winnie. 

Author Q & A

I had an opportunity to speak with Sally M. Walker, the author of Winnie about her new book. Here’s what she had to say.

Lisa Evans: When did you become aware that the iconic literary figure was based on a real life bear?

Sally M. Walker: It wasn’t until three years ago that I learned that Winnie-the-Pooh was inspired by a real bear. I heard a lecture, given by a mystery writer. She casually mentioned that many Canadian veterinarians served during the war and took care of horses used on the battlefield. She went on to say that one of them, Harry Colebourn, had donated a bear from Canada to the London Zoo, and that she inspired A.A. Milne to write Winnie-the-Pooh. At that point, I knew I had to find out if that was true!

Why did you decide to turn the history of Winnie the Pooh into a children’s book?

Winnie’s story totally captivated me. I love history and I love true stories. The two topics blended naturally into a compelling story. After all, how thrilling is it to discover that an animal you love—Winnie-the Pooh—was, once upon a time, a real bear?

What do you hope that children can learn from reading Winnie’s story?

I hope that children, especially, will begin to realize that history holds many interesting stories. We just have to take the time to find them.

How did you research Harry Colebourn’s relationship with the famous bear?

I borrowed a microfilm copy of Harry’s diary from the Archives of Manitoba. After reading it, I went to London, England, and visited the London Zoo. There, I read the Winnie files and the Zoo’s daily log. They contain many documents about Harry and Winnie. For example, Harry’s son, Fred, wrote many letters about his father and Winnie. He knew their story should be remembered. Winnie was so extraordinarily gentle. While much of that had to be part of her personality. I am sure Harry’s kind treatment of her affected her future relationships with humans.

A UK survey named Winnie the Pooh the most beloved children’s book of the past 150 years and he came in second to Anne of Green Gables’ Anne Shirley in CBC Books’ Great Canadian Character Showdown. Why do you think the bear became such a literary legend?

When my sister and I were children, we had hundreds of imaginary adventures with our stuffed animals. My two children did the same with their toys. Any adventure that children share with an animal becomes extraordinary. And I think we all recognize a little bit of ourselves in Pooh’s bumbling character.

What is your favourite memory of reading Winnie the Pooh as a child?

As a child, I thought honey looked like glue and was probably nasty. I ONLY tasted it because Winnie-the-Pooh ate it! (I like maple syrup better.)

This past Christmas, I had the pleasure of reading my book about Winnie to my two-year-old grandson, Donovan (to whom the book is dedicated). He loves Disney’s Winnie-the-Pooh and sings about Winnie in the tree top. He also likes honey. So far, he likes the real pictures of Winnie and Harry the best. That and the part in the book where Winnie and Harry go on the ship. We’ll see how that changes as Donovan grows up.

New Releases: Kids Highlights November 2014

by Dan
Kids / November 11, 2014

We have three fabulous new nonfiction titles for kids available this month!

The Lonely Planet Kids World Atlas

Lonely Planet

Finally, Lonely Planet has made the Atlas kids have been waiting for!

With 160 pages of illustrated maps, engaging infographics, mind-blowing photography and a large dose of humour, this is the atlas that shows kids what the world is really like. Touching on popular culture, sports and school life, this will bring the world to life for kids aged 8 and up.



Ages 8+ 

Available Now

How to be a Space Explorer

Lonely Planet

Everything young explorers needs to know to travel in space, covering what life in zero gravity is like, how to find your way around the solar system, and the all-important question of how to pee in a spacesuit!

Unique illustrations take kids to the heart of the action and amazing photos show what the universe is really like.

Incredible stories of real-life space exploration for kids aged 8 and up, by author and astrobiologist Professor Mark Brake.


Ages 8+

Available Now

Henri Matisse

Meet the Artist!

Patricia Geis

Henri Matisse: Meet the Artist! takes young readers of all ages on a colorful interactive journey through the work of the beloved French painter and sculptor. Featuring flaps, cutouts, and pull tabs, this engaging pop-up book covers Matisse's entire artistic career, including his paintings, drawings, sculptures, and paper cutouts, as well as the story of his lifelong friendship with Pablo Picasso. With activities that encourage readers to explore the artist's signature methods, this hands-on introduction will inspire budding artists from eight to eighty.

Ages 7-12

Available Now

Hervé Tullet in Toronto Wednesday October 8th!

by Dan
Art & Photography + Kids / October 06, 2014

Mix It Up with Herve Tullet

Join Small Print Toronto in conjunction with Chronicle Books, the Avenue Road Arts School and Mabel's Fables on October 8th for a live event for kids with artist Hervé Tullet, the New York Times bestselling author of Press Here and Mix It Up!

Mix It Up! A Live Art Event for Kids 3-7 with Hervé Tullet
October 8 4:00PM - 5:00PM
The Great Hall

1087 Queen Street West
> Toronto, ON M6J 1H3
Tel: 647-341-5526

For FREE tickets go to: www.smallprinttoronto.org

New Releases: Kids + Teen Highlights June 2014

by Dan
Kids + YA Fiction / May 29, 2014

The wait for the final book in the Leigh Bardugo's Grisha Trilogy is finally over next month!

Here's a look at Ruin & Rising and some of the other awesome new books for kids, middle grade, and teens available in June!  



The Truth About Alice

Jennifer Mathieu

When Healy High star quarterback, Brandon Fitzsimmons, dies in a car crash, it was because he was sexting with Alice. Ask anybody

In this remarkable debut novel, four Healy High students tell all they "know" about Alice—and in doing so reveal their own secrets and motivations, painting a raw look at the realities of teen life. But exactly what is the truth about Alice? In the end there's only one person to ask: Alice herself.

Ages 12+


Available June 3


Ruin and Rising

Leigh Bardugo

The much-anticipated conclusion to the Grisha Trilogy!

The capital has fallen. The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne. Now the nation's fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army...

Ages 12+




"Every time readers may think she’s written herself into a corner, Bardugo pulls off a twist that, while surprising, will keep them turning pages furiously."Kirkus Reviews (starred review)


Available June 17




James Preller & illustrated by Iacopo Bruno

Welcome. Have a seat. The wolves will wait. Let us tell you a story. But be warned. Nightmareland isn’t just any tale. This is a Scary Tale.

Prepare yourself for the next installment of James Preller’s heart-poundingly scary chapter book series filled with dark and creepy illustrations from acclaimed artist Iacopo Bruno. 

Ages 7-10


Available June 10



Arree Chung & illustrated by Arree Chung

A ninja must be strong, courageous, and silent! He creeps through the house on a secret mission. There may be obstacles! But have no fear-a true ninja can overcome all challenges.

Ages 4-7

Available June 3

The Pout-Pout Fish Goes to School

Deborah Diesen & illustrated by Daniel X. Hanna

Turn little pouts into big smiles!

Mr. Fish is nervously awaiting his first day of school, and he frets about not knowing how to write his name, how to draw shapes, and how to do math—until he's reassured that school is the perfect place to learn how to master all of these new skills.

Ages 2-5

Available June 24


A Little Valkyrie's First Day of School

Adam Auerbach

Edda is a Valkyrie (an ancient Norse goddess who guides and protects heroes). She lives in a magical land called Asgard, where she has everything she wants. Well... almost everything. Edda wants to find a friend her own age. Edda's wise papa knows of a place where she can make friends: a place on Earth called "school."


Ages 4-8

Available June 24

New Releases: Kids & Teen Highlights March 2014

by Dan
Kids + Picture Books + YA Fiction / February 24, 2014

There are so many great books for kids and teens coming in out in March! Here's a look at some of the highlights.... 


My Life with the Walter Boys

Ali Novak

Wattpad's most loved story with over 26 million views, published for the first time!

Sixteen-year-old Jackie Howard is devastated when her parents are killed in a car accident. She has no one to turn to except for her mom's best friend Katherine Walter. Jackie quickly discovers that Katherine is no stranger to being a mom—she's got twelve boys! And every single one is a handful...

Ages 12-17

Available March 1

The Winner's Curse

Marie Rutkoski

The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart. In the tradition of Kristin Cashore and Cassandra Clare,it is a brilliant, unputdownable, star-crossed romance about the curse of winning.

Ages 12-17

Available March 4


Paperback Original

Searching for Beautiful

Nyrae Dawn

From the bestselling author of Charade, a heartbreaking look at a failed teen pregnancy and how a broken girl can love again, told in alternating chapters from the before and the after.

Ages 13+

Available March 4

The Nightmare Dilemma

Arkwell Academy #2

Mindee Arnett

Following The Nightmare Dilemma, the thrilling new fantastical Arkwell Academy mystery series from YA author Mindee Arnett continues with The Nightmare Dilemma. 

Ages 13-18

Available March 11

16 Things I Thought Were True 

Janet Gurtler

Morgan isn't thrilled to take a summer job at the local amusement park the summer before her senior year. Her super-hot manager, Adam, makes it bearable...until she gets fired. And when Morgan's mom gets sick and confesses that Morgan's dad is not actually dead, she becomes determined to find him. To her shock, Adam agrees to help. Road trip with a cute guy? Summer is finally starting to look up.

Ages 13+

Available March 11


Canada Doodles 

Megan Radford & illustrated by Peter Cook

Explore the rugged beauty of Canada's varied landscape as you travel on highways, in trains and planes, and even floating in bathtubs. Enjoy a plate of poutine and other tasty treats, admire the world's biggest tomahawk, and take in a hockey game.

Ages 8+

Available Now

Edgar Gets Ready For Bed

A BabyLit First Steps Picture Book

Jennifer Adams & illustrated by Ron Stucki

Meet the plucky toddler Edgar the Raven! He's mischievous, disobedient, and contrary. Dinnertime, clean-up time, and bedtime are all met with one word: NEVERMORE! But as the evening winds to a close, Edgar's mom knows just what to do to get her son into bed—a bedtime story.

Infant to 3

Available Now

The Big Book of Superheroes

Bart King

As a child, Bart King discovered he could punch people into outer space. Sadly, he lost a lot of friends that way. Today, Bart is one of the world's most in-demand superhero experts. So if you're wondering if you have what it takes to be a superhero-of course you do! All you need is a burning desire to fight evildoers. Oh, and also a secret identity, the perfect name, a cool costume, some terrific superpowers, and an archenemy. Actually, you know what? You better get this book!


Ages 8+

Available March 1

The Cupcake Club: Baby Cakes

Sheryl Berk and Carrie Berk

Delaney is shocked to find out her mom is expecting twins! She LIKES being an only child. It's been 10 years, and she's had her parents-and her room-all to herself. But her cupcake club pals are excited to bake for the baby shower-until Delaney's mom wants a giant stork made out of cupcakes! Meanwhile, Delaney wonders what kind of a big sis she'll be. She's never babysat and definitely has never changed a diaper. The girls of Peace, Love & Cupcakes are about to give her a crash course in Baby 101!


Ages 9-12

Available March 4

Daddy Wrong Legs

Nina Laden

Every daddy is different—and here's the proof! Featuring Nina Laden's colourful artwork and trademark humour, this interactive format will delight the youngest readers (and their fathers) as they mix and match the split pages to create a bevy of daddies that are part hairy, part scaly... and wholly fun.

Infant to 3

Available March 4

I Didn't Do My Homework Because...

Davide Cali & illustrated by Benjamin Chaud

How many excuses are there for not doing homework? Let us count the ways: Giant lizards invaded the neighbourhood. Elves hid all the pencils. And then there was that problem with carnivorous plants...The excuses go on and on, each more absurd than the next and escalating to hilarious heights.

Ages 6-9

Available March 4

642 Things to Write About

Young Writers Edition

826 Valencia

Write a to-do list for a villain. Describe your dream tree house. Create a haiku about your shoes. Young writers will get their creative juices flowing with this collection of smart, funny, and thought-provoking writing exercises. Kids can open to any page to find inspiration, express themselves, and jump-start their literary genius.

Ages 8-12

Available March 4

Bedtime Math 2

This Time It's Personal

Laura Overdeck & illustrated by Jim Paillot

Inside Bedtime Math 2, families will find fun, mischief-making math problems to tackle-math that isn't just kid-friendly, but actually kid-appealing. With over 100 math riddles on topics from missing socks and glitter to your favorite wild pet and how fast you can run, kids will find math isn't just fun, it can be found in their everyday lives.

Ages 3-8

Available March 11

The Riverman

Aaron Starmer

Alistair Cleary is the kid who everyone trusts. Fiona Loomis is not the typical girl next door. Alistair hasn't really thought of her since they were little kids until she shows up at his doorstep with a proposition: she wants him to write her biography. What begins as an odd vanity project gradually turns into a frightening glimpse into the mind of a potentially troubled girl.

Ages 10-14

Available March 18

Presto Change-o!

A Book of Animal Magic

Edouard Manceau

See the raccoon hiding in a magic cauldron? The owl pretending to be a clock? The lion masquerading as a flower? A rabbit hiding in a hot-air balloon? Kids will love working magic with just a few simple turns-and a few rhyming verses-that transform everyday objects into familiar creatures.

Ages 3+

Available March 18

Two Hands to Love You

Diane Adams & illustrated by Paige Keiser

With two loving hands, an adoring mother cradles her baby after bath time and a devoted father lifts his newborn to look into a nest. Sister, brother, grandma, and grandpa all can't wait to share what they love best with their newest family member. And when it is time to step out into the world, this caring family is right there alongside their littlest one. 

Ages 2-4

Available March 25

Lately Lily

The Adventures of a Travelling Girl

Micah Player

Where has Lily been lately? Everywhere! In this heartfelt picture book from illustrator Micah Player, Lily—a world travelling girl with boundless curiosity—goes on enviable adventures with her best friend Zeborah, travelling by plane, train, boat, and even by camel. Whether venturing far away or staying close to home, Lily knows that the joy of discovery is the best way to travel each and every day.

Ages 3-5

Available March 25

The Glorkian Warrior Delivers a Pizza

James Kochalka

The Glorkian Warrior isn't the brightest bulb in the box, so it's good he's got his trusty talking backpack to advise him as they set out on a perilous journey to deliver a pizza. The pizza's got clams and peanut butter on it, so it's not clear who's going to want it, but deliver it they will. With bright, lively illustrations and classic pratfalls, this graphic novel for kids is 112 pages of super icky gross-out humor and ludicrously bad decisions

Ages 5-9

Available March 25

Chronicle Books Introduce Twirl

by Dan
Kids + Picture Books / February 13, 2014


Our friends at Chronicle Books have announced they are partnering with Éditions Tourbillon in Paris to create Twirl Books. 

Lovingly created by a dedicated team of editors and designers, the English-language interactive books and games will feature innovative formats and eye-catching visuals for babies, toddlers and young children.

Check out the first five Twirl titles due out next month:


A Tree For All Seasons

Maryse Guittet

This uniquely shaped board book celebrates the cycle of the year with a tree that blossoms in spring, bears fruit in summer, sheds its leaves in fall, and cradles snow in winter. Young readers follow the passage of seasons in a succession of spreads, each filled with simple text and intriguing lift-the-flaps that reveal the many creatures-from owls to bumblebees-who all find shelter in the tree's boughs.






JoJo's First Word Book

Xavier Deneux

Meet Jojo, the irresistible young bunny who's every toddler's best friend and the star of this friendly and reassuring first word book! Together with his sister Lulu, Jojo explores scenes of daily life familiar to every child, from mealtime to playtime to bedtime. 






My First Color Dominoes

The Game of Color Discovery

Edouard Manceau

This book and accompanying domino game offer an intriguing way to learn and explore the world of colour. The game-28 sturdy pieces securely stowed-features colourful familiar objects to match end to end. And the robust board book stashed in a pocket on the other side reinforces colour combinations learned in the game. 



Presto Change-O

Edouard Manceau

Here you'll find a magic book
Where all's not what it seems.
For when you turn each object round


The unexpected will be seen. 








The Ultimate Book of Vehicles

From Around the World

Didier Balicevic

Vehicles, vehicles, vehicles—nearly 100 of them—in all shapes and sizes! A giant crane hovers over a construction site, a space ship roars into space... Super-sized spreads feature marvellously detailed illustrations that just beg to be pored over again and again. Best of all, lots of flaps, popups, pull-tabs, and rotating wheels bring the various vehicles to life. 


Anorak for Your Cold-Weather Blues

by Megan
February 08, 2013

Today's blizzard news from the East Coast got me thinking about hot chocolate, coziness, and warm clothes, which naturally led to thoughts of anoraks in my typical Friday-jumping-around train of thought (for those of you who don't know, an anorak is a type of heavy jacket with a hood, often lined with fur or fake fur, so as to protect the face from a combination of freezing temperatures and wind. They are tres snuggly).

Anorak is ALSO a wonderful, tremendous, stupendous magazine for kids! I was so excited to see Issue #2 of the happy-making mag for kids, released February 1, that I practically catapulted through the Raincoast office to get a copy in my hot little hands. This issue's theme is animals: the weird, the wacky, the furry and the funny (spoiler alert: there's a sloth wearing suspenders and painting alongside a flamingo in a kimono = YES!).



Anorak Magazine is an indie kids publishing house with five issues per year, aimed at boys and girls aged 6-12, as well as adults who refuse to grow up (like, erm... me!).

The mag contains short illustrated stories, book reviews, games, activities, and it's an absolute showcase of the most beautiful and unique children's artists in the world. The magazines are meant to be kept, collected, and adored, like kids' magazines of the past.

My favourite feature has to be the recurring exploits (told as a photo-story) of Munkie and Horrace, two real monkey stuffies. In this issue, Munkie and Horrace's world is turned upside down by the arrival of G Munkie, a bling-wearing scamp who convinces the other monkeys to get in on his illicit cupcake business, driving his RV to a remote location to instigate his mobile bakery in order to protect the secret cupcake recipe (Breaking Bad fans, you will LOVE this).

Issue #2 also features some gorgeous illustrative work by Edmonton's Studio Tipi, who created the cover.

Check out Issue #1, the circus-themed issue, if you want even more Anorak giggles and games:


YALSA 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults

by Siobhan
February 03, 2012

Last week, I blogged about all the amazing books that were highlighted by ALA, YALSA and ALSC. Guess what? There's more! Yes, more great books, more "best of" lists.

YALSA announced it's picks for the YALSA 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults: "books, recommended for ages 12-18, meet the criteria of both good quality literature and appealing reading for teens".

There are quite a few books on the list that we're pleased to stock in our own warehouse:

EnclaveEnclave, by Ann Aguirre, published by Feiwel & Friends. (Also available in Audio; paperback coming in August 2012.)

Freak Hunters Deuce and Fade are exiled from their underground enclave, and face even greater dangers above ground.



Anna Dressed in BloodAnna Dressed in Blood, by Kendare Blake, published by Thomas Doherty Associates / Tor Teen. (Paperback coming in July 2012.)

Moving from town-to-town, Cas slays murderous ghosts, seeking revenge for the death of his father. Along the way, he meets Anna’s ghost, and discovers new insights into the complexities of ghosts.

Ruby RedRuby Red, by Kerstin Gier, published by Henry Holt & Company. (Paperback coming in April 2012.)

Gwenyth upsets her family when she inherits the time traveling gene instead of her cousin, Charlotte. Soon Gwenyth finds herself unexpectedly involved in mysterious, dangerous, and intriguing circumstances.


Stupid FastStupid Fast, by Geoff Herback, published by Sourcebooks / Sourcebooks Fire. (Also keep an eye out for Geoff Herback's Nothing Special, coming out in May 2012!)

As football recruitment brings new friends, Felton tries to keep his mother’s depression, and his own insecurities, hidden.


PrizedPrized, by Caragh O'Brien, published by Roaring Brook Press.

The leadership in Sylum is threatened by Gaia and attempts to control her by systematically separating her from everyone she loves, including her infant sister and boyfriend Leon.



StickStick, by Andrew Smith, published by Feiwel and Friends.

Stick and his brother Bosten must lean on each other to survive their abusive family, until Bosten is kicked out and must survive on his own.



The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own MakingThe Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making, by Catherynne M. Valente, published by Feiwel & Friends. (Paperback coming in April 2012.)

September is excited, puzzled, confused and thrilled on her quest through Fairyland.


Miles from OrdinaryMiles from Ordinary, by Carol Lynch Williams, published by St. Martin's Press / St. Martin's Griffin. (Paperback coming in March 2012.)

When her troubled mother disappears, an isolated Lacey frantically searches for her, while facing the terrors of her mother’s delusions.


See the complete list of YALSA 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults.

2012 ALA, YALSA, ALSC Award Winners & Picks

by Siobhan
Kids + Picture Books + YA Fiction / January 27, 2012

The American Library Association (ALA) has announced their annual picks for the top books, video and audiobooks for children and young adults – including the Caldecott, Coretta Scott King, Newbery and Printz awards – at its Midwinter Meeting in Dallas.

We're proud to have some of these award-winning titles on our list! Congratulations to all the award winners and nominees. There's a wealth of amazing books for children's and youth out there now.

Breaking Stalin's NoseNewbery Honor Book
Breaking Stalin's Nose
, written and illustrated by Eugene Yelchin, and published by Henry Holt and Company.

See all Newberry winners.
Find other books by Eugene Yelchin.



Grandpa GreenCaldecott Honor Books
Grandpa Green
, illustrated and written by Lane Smith, and published by Roaring Brook Press.

See all Caldecott winners.
Find other books by Lane Smith.



UndergroundCoretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award
Shane W. Evans, illustrator and author of Underground: Finding the Light to Freedom, is the King Illustrator Book winner. The book is a Neal Porter Book, published by Roaring Brook Press.

See all Coretta Scott King winners.
Find other books by Shane W. Evans.


The Lover's DictionaryAlex Award for the 10 best adult books that appeal to teen audiences
The Lover’s Dictionary
, by David Levithan, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. (Paperback coming from Picador in January 2012.)

See all Alex Award winners.


The Notorious Benedict Arnold BootlegYALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults honors the best nonfiction book published for young adults, ages 12 – 18, each year. The 2012 Excellence winner is by The Notorious Benedict Arnold: A True Story of Adventure, Heroism & Treachery, by Steve Sheinkin, published by Roaring Brook Press. One of the Finalists is Bootleg: Murder, Moonshine, and the Lawless Years of Prohibition, by Karen Blumenthal, published by Roaring Brook Press.

See all YALSA Award winners.
Find other books by Steve Sheinkin.
Find other books by Karen Blumenthal.
Her new book, Steve Jobs, the Man Who Thought Different, is coming out in February 2012.

EnclaveYALSA also published its annual list of Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers. Enclave, by Aguirre, Ann, published by Feiwel and Friends was on the Top Ten list.

On the full list of Quick Picks, we were pleased to see several titles that we carry:


F in ExamsBooF in Exams: The Very Best Totally Wrong Test Answers, by Richard Benson, published by Chronicle Books.

Boo: The Life of the World’s Cutest Dog, by J.H. Lee, published by Chronicle Books.

Anna Dressed in Blood

Dead Inside Do Not EnterAnna Dressed in Blood, by Kendare Blake, published by Tom Doherty Associates/Tor Teen.

Dead Inside Do Not Enter: Notes from the Zombie Apocalypse, by Lost Zombies, published by Chronicle Books.


Death SentenceFall for AnythingDeath Sentence: Escape From Furnace #3, by Alexander Gordon Smith, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Paperback from Square Fish coming February 2012.

Fall For Anything, by Courtney Summers, published by St. Martin's Griffin.

See all 2012 YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers.

And last but not least, the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) has released its list of 2012 Notable Children's Books:


Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site Grandpa GreenGoodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site, by Sherri Duskey Rinker, illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld, published by Chronicle Books.

Grandpa Green, by Lane Smith, published by Roaring Brook Press.

Over and Under the SnowPrudence Wants a PetOver and Under the Snow, by Kate Messner, illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal, published by Chronicle Books.

Prudence Wants a Pet, by Cathleen Daly, Illus. by Stephen Michael King. Roaring Brook Press, $16.99. (9781596434684).


America is Under AttackBreaking Stalin's NoseAmerica Is Under Attack: September 11, 2001 The Day the Towers Fell, by Don Brown, published by Roaring Brook Press.

Breaking Stalin's Nose, by Eugene Yelchin, published by Henry Holt and Company.


E-mergency!LemonadeE-mergency!, by Tom Lichtenheld, illustrated by Ezra Fields-Meyer, published by Chronicle Books.

Lemonade, and Other Poems Squeezed from a Single Word, by Bob Raczka, illustrated by Nancy Doniger, published by Roaring Brook Press.

Nursery Rhyme ComicsUndergroundNursery Rhyme Comics: 50 Timeless Rhymes from 50 Celebrated Cartoonists, published by First Second.

Underground, by Shane Evans, published by Roaring Brook Press.


Won TonZita the SpacegirlWon Ton: A Cat Tale Told in Haiku, by Lee Wardlaw, illustrated by Eugene Yelchin, published by Henry Holt.

Zita the Spacegirl, by Ben Hatke, illustrated by Ben Hatke, published by First Second.




Anya's GhostBlizzard of GlassAnya's Ghost, by Vera Brosgol, published by First Second.

Blizzard of Glass: The Halifax Explosion of 1917, by Sally M. Walker, published by Henry Holt.



BootlegHurricane DancersBootleg: Murder, Moonshine, and the Lawless Years of Prohibition, by Karen Blumenthal, published by Roaring Brook Press.

Hurricane Dancers: The First Caribbean Pirate Shipwreck, by Margarita Engle, published by Henry Holt.


All Ages

Press HerePress Here, by Hervé Tullet, published by Chronicle Books.


See all ALSC 2012 Notable Children's Books.



So many great books to add to your "To Read" pile!


UPDATE: Also check out the YALSA 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults!

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