#IMWAYR November 29, 2021

Hello everyone. It's #IMWAYR time again, when readers share what they have been reading and find out what others have been up to in the past week. Kathryn hosts the adult version of this meme at Book Date. Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers host the kidlit rendition. Whatever you are looking forward to in your next great read, these are fabulous places to start your search.

There is some positive news regarding the recent flooding and road closures in my part of the world. Routes for essential traffic have opened up so the mail and other necessities are being delivered. The grocery store shelves are stocked and life seems pretty normal. We are a bit worried about whether our sons and their families will be able to make it for Christmas because of road conditions, but have already determined to celebrate later if it doesn't work out. 

We've had a wonderful week here. Well, except that we have piles of cupboards taking over the main floor of the house ready to install as soon as the valence is finished. Everything takes a lot more time than you anticipate. I'm making progress on my baby quilt, so hopefully it won't be true for it.

Titles with a 🍁 indicate this is a Canadian or Indigenous Canadian Author and or Illustrator.

Clicking on the title will take you to the Goodreads page of the book.

This picture book/graphic novel hybrid is hilarious! Princesses and dinosaurs argue over whose book this is. Each group brings in their big guns - a T Rex for the dinosaurs and a dragon for the princesses. It doesn't turn out like the original two groups planned.
I appreciate the diversity in the princesses. I love that by the end of the book the princesses and the dinosaurs have learned to appreciate one another and have fun together.
The colourful artwork was created digitally.

5 stars

The Little Ghost Who Was a Quilt
 by Riel Nason & Byron Eggenschwiler (Illustrator) September 1, 2020  🍁

This is a sweet story about being different, and coming to accept yourself just are who you are. I love that because the little ghost is a quilt instead of a sheet, it gets treated and admired just like regular quilts are. Riel Nason is a Canadian quilter and author. Check out some samples of her work here. You can see examples of Byron Eggenschwiler's other artwork here

After finishing this book I really wished I wasn't allergic to creatures with fur. It made me miss my childhood cat terribly.
I read this first and then went in search of Buffy singing this song. It was even better when I reread the book with her voice and the rhythm of the music in my head.
Ben Hodson's digitally rendered artwork is loaded with charm. It shows the story of a young girl and her diverse family adopting a dog from a shelter.
The back matter includes song lyrics and music, photographs of Buffy Sainte-Marie with some of her animals and a note from the author.
Listen to the song here. https://youtu.be/bLMUjeuhKkU

4 stars

Knot Cannot
 by Tiffany Stone & Mike Lowery (Illustrations) April 7, 2020   🍁

This book is a lot of fun!
The blurb says it is "a pun-packed look at friendship, jealousy, and being yourself." That's pretty much it. Knot envies Snake who can do a lot that Knot cannot. But when danger lurks, it's Knot who saves the day. If this isn't enough to encourage you to purchase a copy, The language is mostly simple enough to add to your reader shelf. I love the different kinds of knots at the end of the book.


5 stars

Gizmos, Gadgets, and Guitars: The Story of Leo Fender
 by Michael Mahin & Steven Salerno (Illustrations) September 7, 2021

This is absolutely wonderful!
If you know anything about guitars and music from the past 6 or 7 decades, you will have heard of a fender guitar. This is the story of how Leo Fender went from tinkering away at broken radios to making world famous musical instruments.
Steven Salerno's art is the perfect accompaniment. The original illustrations were created crayon, ink, gouache, and pastel on paper. They were scanned, imported into Photoshop, and finished. I love how a history of technology and musical genres is revealed through these images.
The back matter contains an author's note with additional information about Leo Fender, a bibliography, and glossary.


4 stars

Phoebe and Her Unicorn
by Dana Simpson
September 2, 2014

My four year old granddaughter is crazy about unicorns. This series was always popular in my school library, so I thought I would read this to see if it might work for her. I now see why it was always checked out. Alas, although this story about a girl who becomes best friends with a unicorn is witty, heartwarming, and precious, it's still too old for her. I'm open to alternative suggestions if you have any. 

5 stars

Living with Viola
by Rosena Fung  🍁

I'm in the process of writing a full book review for this graphic novel. It's an intense look at how personal anxiety is exacerbated by external situations. It's heartbreakingly brilliant.


When I get into a series, it's because of the characters. Sure the writing is good, but it's that writing that creates individuals that my brain and heart comes to think of as real. A new book is like a visit with an old friend. That's how I feel about Ben Aaronovitch's Peter Grant series. Peter is a bit young to be an old friend, so I think of him as a kid I've watched grow up. He's a police office who is also a wizard in training. In this adventure he ends up in the countryside tracking down two kidnapped girls. Unicorns and the Fay are involved in the abduction.

I've read these with my eyes and ears. Kobna Holdbrook-Smith is Peter Grant to me! If you are a fan of mysteries, fantasy and like clever wit in your reading life, I highly recommend this series!

Now that I've finished rereading it, I swear it's better the second time round. 

The Furthest Station
 by Ben Aaronovitch & Kobna Holdbrook-Smith

Mystery, encounters with ghosts, talking foxes, river gods and goddesses, and magic are what I have come to anticipate and love from this series. In this novella. an increase in victorian ghost sightings causes Peter Grant; Jaget Kumar, his counterpart at the British Transport Police; Abbigail, Peter's young cousin; and Nightingale to patrol the underground. They track down and interview the spectres hoping to find out what is causing this increase in hauntings. It turns out to have it's origins in modern reality.

I first read this with my eyes, but without Kobna Holdbrook-Smith's narration, Peter Grant's character didn't come through. This time I was delighted to listen to it.  


This book blew me away. George M. Johnson's memoir put me in mind of Thomson Highway's Permanent Astonishment, a memoir I recently finished. While they are decades apart in age, both of these queer men are from diverse backgrounds. Johnson is black while Thomson is Indigenous. Both of them radiate love and joy. Both are important reads for other boys like them who aren't blue, and for the rest of us who want to be allies. 


The Hanging Tree by Ben Aaronovitch
Goldilocks: Wanted Dead or Alive by Chris Colfer & Jon Proctor (Illustrator)


Hunting by Stars (A Marrow Thieves Novel) by Cherie Dimaline
The Vanderbeekers Lost and Found by Karina Yan Glaser
More picture books from my #MustReadList


Living With Viola by Rosena Fung


#MustReadIn2021 29/25

#MustReadNFIn2021 12/12 

#MustReadPBIn2021 70/100 

Big Book Summer Challenge 9 

Books by Canadian Indigenous Authors 36/25

Books by Canadian Authors: 113/100

Canada Reads 2021 5/5 

Discworld Series 41/41

Goodreads Reading Challenge: 405/333 


  1. Princesses Versus Dinosaurs sounds really fun!

    1. It really is Lisa. I hope you can find a copy to read.

  2. Wishing for you that the new cabinets get placed & the roads, too. I'm glad things are sort of back to normal! What a great group of books, some I know, but the others, like Knot Cannot & the one about Guitars sound great. Will I ever get to them all? That's always the questions! Have a good week, Cheriee, & thanks!

    1. This really is the question isn't it Linda, Will I ever get to them all? I will need to live to be at least 500 to read all the books that are on my list now!

  3. Cheriee, I'm glad to hear the flooding situation is returning to normal for the most part! And good luck with the renovations—I imagine those are super-frustrating, but the outcome will be worth it!

    And all of these books look fantastic, as always—Princesses Versus Dragons sounds completely delightful, as does Phoebe on Her Unicorn! (On the note of unicorn-related books, I haven't read any myself, but I know there was a picture book people were enjoying a while back called Itty-Bitty Kitty-Corn—perhaps I'll cram it in myself at some point!)

    Living With Viola was one I had seen online but left off of my wish list because I had a bunch of graphic novels already—but now I'm adding it, since you liked it so much (and it does sound right up my alley)! And I have a copy of All Boys Aren't Blue that I've been waiting to read for several millennia, so I appreciate the nudge to read it. Thanks so much for the wonderful post!

    1. Living with Viola is an important book I think, but it's also a really hard one to read. I taught students like Olivia who had their own kind of dreams, but their parents wouldn't support them if they followed them.

  4. Lots I could talk about here. It was really concerning when the grocery stores had little food. It did seem unnecessary in terms of the panic buying that I saw. It seems like we are past that.
    Princesses versus Dinosaurs, and the guitar and quilt books all interest me. Knot Cannot is sitting on my counter but I might not be able to get back to my library for another week (who really knows, I don't, that is just a guess).
    I completely agree with what you wrote about Phoebe and her Unicorn. Those books keep coming out too. My younger unicorn readers seem to like Amy Krause Rosenthal's Uni the Unicorn books, Cale Atkinson's Unicorns 101 pleases some of them, but sometimes they think he has it wrong. Also, Grumpy Unicorn has gotten repeat sign-outs from a couple.
    I also completely agreed with what you wrote about series reading. Once I left my house, I knew I needed to find a book that I hadn't read yet, but from a very familiar series. It's just ultimate comfort reading.

  5. You had such a great week of reading. I'm sorry you're dealing with the flooding. Also, I so agree with that thought that everything takes much longer than anticipated. I hope you're able to enjoy the cabinets in their proper place soon.

    Unicorns are also excessively popular in my library right now with pre-K and Kindergarten. The ones that are enjoyed the most are Unicorn Day, Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great, A Unicorn Named Sparkle, the Amy Krouse Rosenthal Uni books, How to Catch a Unicorn, the board book You Are My Magical Unicorn, Not Quite Narwhal and the Ame Dyckman book. I cannot keep unicorns on the shelf. ;)