2019 Joan Betty Stuchner — Oy Vey! — Funniest Children’s Book Award

The Joan Betty Stuchner— Oy Vey! —Funniest Children’s Book Award was created in memory of a beloved children’s author and teacher. The biannual award honours Joan’s life-affirming humour and encourages other children’s writers to laugh it up on the page the way she did. We would like to congratulate Cary Fagan, Mort Ziff is Not Dead won this year’s award!

Mort Ziff is Not Dead
By Cary Fagan
176 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Puffin Canada
ISBN 9780143198482

A humorous coming-of-age middle-grade novel set in 1960s Florida. Battling obxious siblings, sunburns, and a corporate millionaire, Norman is determined to help an old comedian save his career.

Mort Ziff is Not Dead kept the jury “buckled over with guffaws, incapacitated with giggles, and/or rib-ticklingly, side-splittingly, thigh-slappingly entertained.”

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Window Wednesday

#WindowWednesday: We are incredibly fortunate to have stores create window features of our books. We want to highlight their amazing work here on our blog for you to see (and perhaps you’ll discover a new local bookstore).

Moonbeam Books
335 Jane Street, Toronto, ON M6S 3Z3
Photography: Vikki VanSickle

Camp Penguin-Moonbeam Books

Liz and Rachelle at Camp Penguin

camppenguin_logoEvery year, we get new camp counselors at Camp Penguin to help run the program. As a way to introduce them to you campers, we like to do a few ice breaker activities!

We asked camp counselor Rachelle Delaney and Liz Kessler today to tell us 2 Truths and 1 Lie. Use our drop-down menu to guess the false statement!  

On the first night of camp, everyone is sitting around the camp fire playing Would You Rather? Here’s how our camp counselors responded:

Be stuck in a comic book or in a Where’s Waldo book?
Rachelle: Probably a comic book — the number of people in Where’s Waldo looks totally overwhelming. (And if I could choose the comic book, maybe Tintin.)
Liz: Comic book. I’d get a bit claustrophobic with all the crowds in a Where’s Waldo book!

Choose to live underwater or on land your entire life?
Rachelle: Definitely on land! I love sea creatures, but there are so many different landscapes to choose from on land, and I love that!
Liz: Ooooh, difficult! I’d love to explore underwater, but to live for the rest of my life would have to be on land or I would miss all my friends and family too much!

Be able to predict the future or have a talking ax?
Rachelle: I don’t know what I’d do with a talking ax (sounds dangerous?), so I’m going to go with predicting the future. I’ve always wanted to be really good at reading Tarot cards.
Liz: Yikes! Both sound scary! I’d have to go with predict the future but I’d be REALLY nervous about it too!

Live in a cardboard box or be always wear a costume?
Rachelle: Both sound uncomfortable, but I’d choose the costume – preferably a cozy unicorn onesie.
Liz: Always wear a costume. A cardboard box would be a bit cramped!

Ability to grow to a giant or shrink to a dwarf size?
Rachelle: Shrinking to the size of a dwarf could be more helpful, I think (especially for squeezing into small spaces). And I’d rather go nearly unnoticed than be feared by everyone!
Liz: I think I’d have to go small, so I could sneak into places that most people can’t get into!

Clara VoyantClara Voyant
By Rachelle Delaney
224 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Puffin Canada
ISBN 9780143198543
Clara can’t believe her no-nonsense grandmother has just up and moved to Florida. She tries to make the best of a bad situation by joining the newspaper staff at her school, where she can tell the kind of hard-news stories her grandmother appreciated. But the editor relegates her to boring news stories and worse . . . the horoscopes.

The Tail of Emily WindsnapThe Tail of Emily Windsnap
By Liz Kessler
224 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Candlewick Press
ISBN 9780763660208
For as long as she can remember, twelve-year-old Emily Windsnap has lived on a boat. And, oddly enough, for just as long, her mother has seemed anxious to keep Emily away from the water. But when Mom finally agrees to let her take swimming lessons, Emily makes a startling discovery.

Win Your Kid’s Summer Reading List with #CampPenguin Contest of Chance
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between June 6, 2019 and June 20, 2019. Open to residents of Canada (excluding Quebec) who have reached the age of majority in their province or territory of residence at time of entry. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

Click here to enter for your chance to win a Camp Penguin prize pack – featuring a special bookmark, and your choice of three books from our list of recommended reads for summer camp! Click here for the full official rules.

Camp Penguin

camppenguin_logo
Welcome to #CampPenguin!

We’re back with an all-new summer reading list for kids ages 8-12! By popular demand we’ve included non-fiction, graphic novels, classics, as well as some of our best middle-grade fiction, new in paperback! Visit participating stores and camps across Canada for more information and to pick up your 2019 bookmark.

There’s a book for everyone, check out this line up and see how you can win your kid’s summer reading list below:

Clara VoyantClara Voyant
By Rachelle Delaney
Paperback | 224 Pages | Puffin Canada
ISBN 9780143198543
Clara can’t believe her no-nonsense grandmother has just up and moved to Florida, leaving Clara and her mother on their own for the first time. This means her mother can finally “follow her bliss,” which involves moving to a tiny apartment in Kensington Market, working at a herbal remedy shop and trying to develop her so-called mystical powers. Clara tries to make the best of a bad situation by joining the newspaper staff at her new middle school, where she can sharpen her investigative journalistic skills and tell the kind of hard-news stories her grandmother appreciated. But the editor relegates her to boring news stories and worse . . . the horoscopes.

Fairy Mom and Me_paperbackFairy Mom and Me
By Sophie Kinsella
Illustrated by Marta Kissi
Paperback | 160 Pages | Puffin Canada
ISBN 9780735263352
Ella Brook can’t wait to grow up, because one day she will become a fairy and have her own sparkly wings and a teacher on Fairy Tube, just like her mom! Until then, Ella has to learn by watching her mom in action. But sometimes spells go wrong, and Ella’s mom can never seem to remember the right magic codes. A lot of the time, it’s up to Ella to come to the rescue. Does she have what it takes to be a fairy one day? Or will there be more glitches than glitter?

HolesHoles Anniversary Edition
By Louis Saschar
Paperback | 272 Pages | Yearling
ISBN 9780440414803
Stanley Yelnats is under a curse. A curse that began with his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather and has since followed generations of Yelnatses. Now Stanley has been unjustly sent to a boys’ detention center, Camp Green Lake, where the boys build character by spending all day, every day digging holes exactly five feet wide and five feet deep. There is no lake at Camp Green Lake. But there are an awful lot of holes. It doesn’t take long for Stanley to realize there’s more than character improvement going on at Camp Green Lake. The boys are digging holes because the warden is looking for something. But what could be buried under a dried-up lake? Stanley tries to dig up the truth in this inventive and darkly humorous tale of crime and punishment—and redemption.

I Spy the Illuminati EyeI Spy the Illuminati Eye
By Sheila Keenan
Paperback | 112 Pages | Penguin Workshop
ISBN 9781524787936
This irreverent, illustrated guide takes a look with an all-seeing, skeptical eye at the history and mystery of the cultural phenomenon that’s got middle-school kids flashing finger triangles and scrutinizing dollar bills for signs of the Illuminati. It’s the first pop culture companion to the shadowy group behind everything from the French Revolution to Jay-Z’s fabulous rise. How did an eighteenth-century philosophical society infiltrate governments, banks, the media, the military, Hollywood, and hip-hop? Or did they?

National Geographic Kids Almanac 2020National Geographic Kids Almanac 2020
By National Geographic
Paperback | 352 Pages | National Geographic
ISBN 9781426332838
Kids can have fun keeping up with our quickly changing world with the world’s best-selling almanac for kids, packed with incredible photos, tons of fun facts, crafts, activities, and fascinating features about animals, science, nature, technology, and more. There’s a whole chapter full of fun and games, including activities, jokes, and comics. Practical reference material, including fast facts and maps of every country, has been fully updated.

The BFGThe BFG
By Roald Dahl
Illustrated by Quentin Blake
Paperback | 224 Pages | Puffin UK
ISBN 9780141365428
On a dark, silvery moonlit night, Sophie is snatched from her bed by a giant.
Luckily it is the Big Friendly Giant, the BFG, who only eats snozzcumbers and glugs frobscottle. But there are other giants in Giant Country. Fifty foot brutes who gallop far and wide every night to find human beans to eat.
Can Sophie and her friend the BFG stop them?

The Cardboard KingdomThe Cardboard Kingdom
By Chad Sell
Paperback | 288 Pages | Knopf Books For Young Readers
ISBN 9781524719388
Welcome to a neighborhood of kids who transform ordinary boxes into colorful costumes, and their ordinary block into cardboard kingdom. This is the summer when sixteen kids encounter knights and rogues, robots and monsters–and their own inner demons–on one last quest before school starts again. In the Cardboard Kingdom, you can be anything you want to be–imagine that! The Cardboard Kingdom was created, organized, and drawn by Chad Sell with writing from ten other authors: Jay Fuller, David DeMeo, Katie Schenkel, Kris Moore, Molly Muldoon, Vid Alliger, Manuel Betancourt, Michael Cole, Cloud Jacobs, and Barbara Perez Marquez. The Cardboard Kingdom affirms the power of imagination and play during the most important years of adolescent identity-searching and emotional growth.

The Legend of GregThe Legend of Greg
By Chris Rylander
Paperback | 368 Pages | Puffin
ISBN 9781524739744
Risk-averse Greg Belmont is content with being ordinary. He’s got a friend–that’s right, just one–at his fancy prep school, and a pretty cool dad (even if he is obsessed with organic soaps that smell like a mix of salted pork and Icelandic bog). The problem is, Greg isn’t ordinary . . . he’s actually an honest-to-goodness, fantastical Dwarf! He discovers the truth the day his dad brings home a gross new tea–one that awakens bizarre abilities in Greg. Then a murderous Bro-Troll kidnaps his dad and Greg is whisked away to the Underground, where Dwarves have lived for centuries right beneath the streets of Chicago.

The Mad Wolf's DaughterThe Mad Wolf’s Daughter
By Diane Magras
Paperback | 304 Pages | Puffin
ISBN 9780735229280
One dark night, Drest’s sheltered life on a remote Scottish headland is shattered when invading knights capture her family, but leave Drest behind. Her father, the Mad Wolf of the North, and her beloved brothers are a fearsome war-band, but now Drest is the only one who can save them. So she starts off on a wild rescue attempt, taking a wounded invader along as a hostage. Hunted by a bandit with a dark link to her family’s past, aided by a witch whom she rescues from the stake, Drest travels through unwelcoming villages, desolate forests, and haunted towns. Every time she faces a challenge, her five brothers speak to her in her mind about courage and her role in the war-band. But on her journey, Drest learns that the war-band is legendary for terrorizing the land. If she frees them, they’ll not hesitate to hurt the gentle knight who’s become her friend. Drest thought that all she wanted was her family back; now she has to wonder what their freedom would really mean. Is she her father’s daughter or is it time to become her own legend?

The Skeleton TreeThe Skeleton Tree
By Iain Lawrence
Paperback | 288 Pages | Tundra Books
ISBN 9781101918371
Less than 48 hours after twelve-year-old Chris casts off on a trip to sail down the Alaskan coast with his uncle, their boat sinks. The only survivors are Chris and a boy named Frank, who hates Chris immediately. Chris and Frank have no radio, no flares, no food. Suddenly, they’ve got to find a way to forage, fish and scavenge supplies from the shore. Chris likes the company of a curious friendly raven more than he likes the prickly Frank. But the boys have to get along if they want to survive. Because as the days get colder, and the salmon migration ends, survival will take more than sheer force of will. There in the wilderness of Kodiak, they discover a bond they didn’t expect, and through it, the compassion and teamwork that might truly be the path to rescue.

The Tail of Emily WindsnapThe Tail of Emily Windsnap
By Liz Kessler
Illustrated by Sarah Gibb
Paperback | 224 Pages | Candlewick Press
ISBN 9780763660208
With a sure sense of suspense and richly imaginative details, Liz Kessler lures us into a glorious undersea world where mermaids study shipwrecks at school and Neptune rules with an iron trident — an enchanting fantasy about family secrets, loyal friendship, and the convention-defying power of love.

Viminy Crowes Comic BookViminy Crowe’s Comic Book
By Marthe Jocelyn and Richard Scrimger
Illustrated by Claudia Davila
Paperback | 336 Pages | Tundra Books
ISBN 9781101918937
When chubby, geeky Wylder Wallace spills lunch on cool and aloof Addy Crowe at Toronto’s Comicon, she dashes to the bathroom, leaving behind the latest issue of her uncle’s steampunk comic hit: Flynn Goster in Gold Rush Train. Wylder, a fan of the Flynn comics, opens this new one eagerly, astounded to see the girl who was just yelling at him inside the comic. Fascinated, he follows Addy into the bathroom, and the adventure begins … Is there a personality conflict? Oh, yes. Addy wants to go home; Wylder wants to stay and explore the world of Viminy Crowe’s comic book. Do things go wrong? You bet they do.

Weird But True CanadaWeird But True Canada
By Chelsea Lin and Brittany Moya del Pino
Paperback | 208 Pages | National Geographic
ISBN 9781426330247
Calling all Canadians and Canada-philes: Get ready to be amazed and delighted by wacky facts, stats, tidbits, and trivia, eh? Did you know that the Royal Mint once created a coin weighing more than 90 kg and valued at over $1 million dollars? Or that Canada was the first country to build a UFO landing pad? Maybe you’d be amazed to discover that Montreal is the second largest French-speaking city in the world? It’s all weird–and it’s all true…Canada style! In this latest and greatest edition of Weird But True, you’ll read all about the wacky wilds, bizarre bites, and strange scenes of Canada!

Wheres Waldo - Exciting ExpeditionsWhere’s Waldo? Exciting Expeditions
By Martin Handford
Paperback | 72 Pages | Candlewick Press
ISBN 9781536206708
On the road again? Planning a vacation? Be sure to pack this compact compendium full of things to spot, story games to play, and puzzles to create, featuring the elusive Waldo and his wily friends. Want a creative challenge to boot? Check out the writing prompts for making up your own stories, plus bonus journal pages inviting you to record your own travel escapades and a creative story game with twenty-four cards. Move over, Waldo — there’s more than one intrepid traveler in town!

Win Your Kid’s Summer Reading List with #CampPenguin Contest of Chance
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between June 6, 2019 and June 20, 2019. Open to residents of Canada (excluding Quebec) who have reached the age of majority in their province or territory of residence at time of entry. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

Click here to enter for your chance to win a Camp Penguin prize pack – featuring a special bookmark, and your choice of three books from our list of recommended reads for summer camp! Click here for the full official rules.

Window Wednesday

#WindowWednesday: We are incredibly fortunate to have stores create window features of our books. We want to highlight their amazing work here on our blog for you to see (and perhaps you’ll discover a new local bookstore).

Book City on the Danforth
348 Danforth Ave, Toronto, ON M4K 1N8
Photography: Norman Nehmetallah

Camp Penguin-Book City

2019 Arthur Ellis Award Winner

Crime Writers of Canada presents the 2019 Arthur Ellis Awards for Excellence in Canadian Crime Writing. Puffin Canada would like to congratulate Linwood Barclay! Escape was named the winner in the Best Juvenile/Young Adult Crime Book category.

Escape

Escape
By Linwood Barclay
Ages 8-12 | 256 Pages | Puffin Canada
ISBN 9780143198802
Twelve-year-old Jeff and genetically engineered spy dog Chipper are on the run from the mysterious and sinister organization known only as The Institute, with help from Harry, the summer guest at Jeff’s aunt’s fishing cabins. Due to a combination of bravery, luck and some of Chipper’s more useful modifications, they’ve managed to evade their pursuers so far. But The Institute is closing in and Chipper and Jeff will have to keep one step ahead if they want to stay alive. . . . Harry seems to have a plan to keep them hidden, but now even he seems to be acting suspiciously. Can Jeff and Chipper trust him?

Danger, secrets and thrilling suspense collide in Linwood Barclay’s action-packed series for children.

 

The 2019 OLA Forest of Reading® Winners and Honour Books

The 2019 Forest of Reading awards were announced last week and we are so thrilled that eight of our titles were honoured at the Festival of Trees. Congratulations to our authors and illustrators!

Blue Spruce Award
#2 Honour Book
The Magician's SecretThe Magician’s Secret
Written by Zachary Hyman
Illustrated by Joe Bluhm
Hardcover
Published by Tundra Books
“The conversational tone draws the reader through the story. The remarkable art work by Joe Bluhm showcases the relationship between Charlie and his grandpa and transports the reader into each adventure, providing glimpses of how the imagination can make a dream a reality . . . this book is best shared as a read-aloud. Any adult will be equally thrilled by the story, its rich language and the wonderful illustrations.” – CM Magazine

Silver Birch Fiction Award
Winner
Chase - paperbackChase
Written by Linwood Barclay
Published by Puffin Canada
Paperback
“The action in Chase begins on the first page and doesn’t let up in this new thriller from Linwood Barclay  . . . readers will enjoy the twists and turns of the action and will relate to all three main characters.” – CM Magazine

#1 Honour Book
Elephant SecretElephant Secret
Written by Eric Walters
Published by Puffin Canada
Hardcover
“Walters interweaves his beautiful family story with a thorough description of elephant behavior—their intellect, compassion, and loyalty—and factual scientific possibilities of cloning an extinct species…A must-read for anyone with an interest in elephants and their welfare.” – Booklist

Red Maple Non-Fiction Award
#2 Honour Book
Innovation NationInnovation Nation: How Canadian Innovators Made the World Smarter, Smaller, Kinder, Safer, Healthier, Wealthier, Happier
Written by David Johnston and Tom Jenkins
Illustrated by Josh Holinaty
Hardcover
Published by Tundra Books
“[R]eminds us just how ingenious Canadians are, despite our golly-gosh-shucks tendency to downplay our accomplishments… Bright illustrations by Josh Holinaty swirl around each page of text to evoke the brilliance of fun and curiosity.” – Quill & Quire

Red Maple Fiction Award
#2 Honour Book
Fourth DimensionFourth Dimension
Written by Eric Walters
Hardcover
Published by Penguin Teen Canada
“I recommend Fourth Dimension to fans of The Rule of 3 series as well as those readers who enjoy action/adventure, realistic, or post-apocalyptic stories. Emma and her mother are strong female characters who are great role models for teenage girls. . . . Recommended.” – CM Magazine

White Pine Award
Winner
The Agony of Bun O'KeefeThe Agony of Bun O’Keefe
Written by Heather T. Smith
Hardcover
Published by Penguin Teen Canada
“Although Bun is 14, she possesses the endearing naiveté and honesty of a child, but her first-person narration isn’t sappy or immature. . . . Bun O’Keefe will settle comfortably at home in readers’ hearts.” – Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews

The Forest of Reading is Canada’s largest recreational reading program. This initiative of the Ontario Library Association (OLA) offers seven reading programs to encourage a love of reading in people of all ages. The Forest helps celebrate Canadian books, publishers, authors and illustrators. More than 270,000 readers participate annually from their School and/or Public Library. All Canadians are invited to participate via their local public library, school library, or individually.