February 19, 2020, marks the first celebration of making a practice to read books from Canadian authors and publishers. We have some to share with you so you can settle in for a day of reading above the 49th parallel (and some from parts of Canada south of that, too).
Let’s start with First Nations publisher Inhabit Media, of Nunavut. Fresh off the press is Tanna’s Owl, written by Rachel and Sean Qitsualik-Tinsley with illustrations by Yong Ling Kang is a picture book story featuring the realistic childhood discovery that caring for another doesn’t always mean your care is returned—and yet, we can still derive satisfaction from the effort.
From the same authors, with illustrations by Emily Fiegenschuh and Ann Lewis-MacDougall, How Things Came to Be: Inuit Stories of Creation is now available in paperback and will attract slightly older readers (grades 1 through 3). Many of Inhabit Media’s books are available in three languages: Canada’s official languages of English and French, as well as the First Nations’ languages of Inuktitut and Inuinnaqtun.
Middle grade readers can meet Pajama Press (Toronto) author Michelle Kadarusman’s work through her award wining Girl of the Southern Sea or her forthcoming Music for Tigers. Also from Pajama Press, for early chapter book fans, dive into Sara Leach’s Penguin Days, illustrated by Rebecca Bender, or Colleen Nelson’s Harvey Comes Home, with spot illustrations by Tara Anderson.
Author Beverly Brenna has published with several Canadian houses and for a variety of ages. Sapphire the Great and the Meaning of Life is one of her recent books from Pajama Press, also illustrated by Tara Anderson and for middle grade readers.
More resources for celebrating #IReadCanadian can be found at the Canadian School Libraries Journal site. And, on a regular basis, you can follow Annapolis Valley Regional Library (Nova Scotia) Outreach librarian Angela Reynolds on social media to see her frequent posts of her current picture book pile.