#IMWAYR December 5, 2022

Welcome! It's #IMWAYR time again, when bloggers share what they have been reading and find out what others have been up to. 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. These are fabulous places to start your search for what to read next.

I have been sick. I hate being sick. 
I ended up with influenza. That morphed into a secondary bacterial infection in my lungs. It's been about a month, and even after a mess of prednisone, my asthma is still out of control. 
I hate being sick, but I'm starting to feel human again. 

I have a specialist appointment in Vancouver, BC on Monday. We will be staying with friends so I will just post this whenever I get a chance and link up as connections become available. 
I will start reading your posts as soon as I get home on Tuesday. 

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 is a book with a lot of heart. It's the story of two brothers. Cedar, the eldest, is a basketball star, and hopes to garner TikTok fame with his home movies. His younger brother, Green, is neurodivergent and pretty much happy with his life as it is. Cedar is sure that Green can make the basketball team, become popular, and have a normal life. Green agrees to try out. After a debacle on the practise court, Green leaves early. When the coach realizes his dead wife's wedding ring is missing, he accuses Green of stealing it. Everyone at the school believes it. Cedar is sure Coach is wrong and he and Green become detectives to find out who really took it. Along the way they come to understand other students and staff, Green makes his first friend, and they even drag their Opa along on a stakeout.
What's really obvious in this book is that these two brothers love each other. It's also clear that they are just right being who they are.
While reading this I couldn't help but wonder if these two brothers will solve any more mysteries.
In the back matter King talks about how the story is based on his younger brother, who, now an adult, is doing just fine. He also discusses the diagnostic term Aspergers. It's no longer used in the USA because of Hans Asperger's work with the NAZI's, but unfortunately, is still used here in Canada.

This might not be my favourite, but I really like this series.
In this one we see two girls trying to come up with a viable business plan in order to win a contest. As with the other books, the characters have much to learn about themselves and others. In the end, the winning or losing is secondary.

This collection of short stories focus around a group of medical students, Fitz, Ming, Chen, and Sri, and follows them once they are doctors. It's brilliant look into the profession. It's full of romance, plenty of dark humour, and a few 
terrifying moments.
LANE WINSLOW SERIES by by Iona Whishaw & Marilla Wex (Narrator) πŸ 4 stars average

I really appreciated learning more about the Doukhobor history of the Kootenays. I wish there was more explicit details about how their successful way of life was destroyed by the government. Unfortunately what we see here is the after effects of it.
I admit though that I am getting tired of the conflicted romantic relationship.

I am addicted to this series. I love the integration of Canadian history and place. I'm thankful to see something positive come out of the romantic piece.
Marilla Wex does a brilliant job as narrator.

This was a great read. Readers are returned to England where Inspector Darling has been framed for murder. Lane is ready to do almost anything to get him released. At the same time, Ames is on his own to figure out who murdered an elderly woman.

5+ stars

The Stone Sky 
(The Broken Earth, #3) by N.K. Jemisin & Robin Miles (Narrator) August 15, 2017

This was as brilliant an ending to this trilogy as could be imagined. I would give it more stars if I could.
I'm not sure I can ever read fantasy again after finishing this book. I  suspect nothing will compare. It's the holy grail of fantasy writing. It might just be the pinnacle of all writing. 

Kate Beaton is brilliant. When I finally sat down to read this, I didn't stop till it was done. This memoir spans the years she spent working in Northern Alberta in the Oil Sands. Being one of the few women there made for emotionally exhausting and even traumatic experiences. 

This reminded me of Joan Didion's Year of Magical Thinking.
The raw pain of loss resonates equally. 
It took me back over three decades ago to the death of my own father and opened old wounds. It isn't full of global cultural and historical connections like Didion's is, but it does address the ones specific to Nigeria. 


Ghostlight by Kenneth Oppel September 6th 2022  πŸ

As Long as the Rivers Flow by Larry Loyie, Constance Brissenden, & Heather D. Holmlund (Illustrator) πŸ

No Vacancy by Tziporah Cohen  πŸ

A Green Velvet Secret by Vicki Grant  πŸ


Narwhalicorn and Jelly (A Narwhal and Jelly Book #7) by Ben Clanton


#MustReadFiction 24/24 one in progress

#MustReadNonFiction 16/18

Canadian Authors 76/100 four in progress

Indigenous Authors 18/25 one in progress

Goodreads Reading Challenge: 266/250

2022 Big Book Summer Challenge 7
Canada Reads shortlist 5/5 

#IMWAYR November 7, 2022

Welcome! It's #IMWAYR time again, when bloggers share what they have been reading and find out what others have been up to. 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. These are fabulous places to start your search  for what to read next.

On Sunday as I write this, we are experiencing our second snowfall. It's divinely lovely and peaceful, but maybe a bit too soon? I guess it always feels too soon, but with hope it won't last long. I still don't have winter tires on my car...

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.



Lala, a wild kind of child, has her own kind of magic. Unfortunately, her mother doesn't see or appreciate this in her.
Against a black and grey city, Lala emits a golden hue as she goes about her daily activities full of joy and energy. Lala spends time in her garden in an empty lot nurturing the plants there. I was struck by the profound contrast between the mother's words to Lala, and Lala's words to plants. Where Lala's words are full of kindness, her mother's are harsh.
When her mother, in an attempt to tame her, refuses to let her go outdoors, Lala's garden magically grows huge and comes in search of her.
As much as I appreciate this book, I was also a bit distressed that it took such a magnitude of magic for Lala's mother to finally accept her as she was.
Alas, there is no magic for other wild children like her.
Gracey Zhang was born in Canada, but now lives in the USA. I hope she is still a Canadian. 

There is much to gush about here.
This charming tale tells of two Chinese girls who overcome obstacles to get to know one another and become friends. Both have come from the country and are now living in a city. Because they don't have residency permits for this area, they are unable to attend public school, and their parents can't afford to pay for school for them.
Rebecca Evans artwork, rendered in pencil and watercolour, is stunning. I love the bright colours of the two girls against a gloomy backdrop of blue greys.
While the story is set in China, the issues of bullying, loneliness and finding a friend are universal themes that children from around the world can relate to.
I appreciated the glossary and pronunciation guide at the beginning of the book that helped me figure out both how to pronounce the Chinese words and to understand them. However, because it is situated on the copyright page, I suspect it might end up being overlooked.
I also appreciated the author's note at the end of this book explaining more about the social situation in China.

This story of a "multiracial child navigating identity and belonging draws from author Tasha Spillett-Sumner's own experience growing up as an Afro-Indigenous girl." It is a gorgeous book with a refrain that will be especially poignant for multiracial children, yet has an important message for all of us. 

"You're part of me
and I'm part of you.

I'm beautiful like me
and you're beautiful like you."

You can read my full review here.  

I Hope
by Monique Gray Smith & Gabrielle Grimard (Illustrator) September 13 2022 πŸ

If you are not already a hard core Gabrielle Grimard fan by now, this book will certainly turn you into one. Her soft dreamy artwork makes this book feel like a blessing. 
This dual language book in both English and Plains Cree, is about adults wishing wonderful things for their children. It showcases multicultural groups of children from different parts of the world. 
This is a wonderful book to get for graduates, but will work for students of any age. I will be purchasing copies of this for my grandchildren.


Bellen Woodward, in grade 6 at the time of this book, is responsible for Crayola coming out with Crayola Colours of the World Crayons: crayons that reflect the many different skin colours of children around the world.
Bellen began by just changing the language around the one crayon called flesh. Instead of handing it over when someone asked for the skin colour crayon, she replied, "Which one? Skin can be any number of beautiful crayons." Soon this way of looking at crayons and skin colour was reflected across her school.
This part of the story was clear to me, but what happened afterwards to influence Crayola is not. Still I appreciate the section that sets out, in general terms, how anyone can bring change into the world.


This is a great introduction to crows. As an adult reader I’m not the target audience, but I was charmed by both the goofy dog and the clever crow.
I’m kind of fascinated by crows and have read adult nonfiction about them. This meant that much of the research wasn’t new to me. But the graphic format certainly helped consolidate my understanding.
I plan to purchase a copy for an adult friend who is crow crazy and collects all things crow.


5 stars

The Talk: Conversations about Race, Love & Truth
byWade Hudson et al August 11, 2020

This collection of writings by diverse authors is an important template for how to make the world a better place for all of us. 
I listened to it once, but no sooner finished it than I started it again. 
You will too if you haven't already been introduced to it. 


4 stars

The Lion of Mars
by Jennifer L Holm & Maxwell Glick (Narrator) January 5, 2021

I am always happy to read/listen to anything by Jennifer L Holm. 
Bell has been raised on Mars in the American compound. They live in Lava tubes underground. It's a small loving community. However, they are estranged from the other colonies living nearby. 
When illness strikes the adults in their home, Bell and another boy end up heading off to ask them for help. A new reality is opened up to them. By the time the book is done, Bell has changed relationships between the communities for the better. 

I really wanted to like this book. I read reviews that lauded it. The premise sounded fascinating. It follows a pair of video game designers from their first meeting as children on into their 40s. As fascinated as I was by the game designing, I didn’t like any of these characters very much. Quite regularly I wanted to smack them across the head and tell them to grow up and get over themselves!

Butt Sandwich & Tree by Wesley King  πŸ

No Vacancy by Tziporah Cohen  πŸ

A Green Velvet Secret by Vicki Grant  πŸ

Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures by Vincent Lam  πŸ


Death in a Darkening Mist (Lane Winslow #2) by Iona Whishaw πŸ

The Stone Sky (The Broken Earth, #3) by N.K. Jemisin

Narwhalicorn and Jelly (A Narwhal and Jelly Book #7) by Ben Clanton


#MustReadFiction 23/24 one in progress

#MustReadNonFiction 16/18

Canadian Authors 69/100 four in progress

Indigenous Authors 18/25

Goodreads Reading Challenge: 257/250

2022 Big Book Summer Challenge 7
Canada Reads shortlist 5/5 

Beautiful You, Beautiful Me by Tasha Spillett-Sumner & Salini Perera (Illustrator)

Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review this beautiful picture book. It was released October 18, 2022, by Owl Books.

Your library needs this book. Every library needs this book. 

Izzy has a warm and loving relationship with her mother. Then she starts to realize that they don't match. They have different physical attributes: different skin colours and different hair. Izzy wants to be "Mama's kind of beautiful." Each time she says something to her mother about it, her mother points out that,

"You're part of me
and I'm part of you.

I'm beautiful like me
and you're beautiful like you."

It's a gorgeous refrain that is repeated across the book.

When they take a walk outside, they see that in the animal world, babies and mothers do not look the same.

In the end when Izzy's mother notes that they have different eye colour, it's Izzy who repeats the refrain.

I love the story line here. That refrain works for all parents and children, even if they look the same. Still, it's even more profound knowing that this story of a "multiracial child navigating identity and belonging draws from author Tasha Spillett-Sumner's own experience growing up as an Afro-Indigenous girl."

Selina Perera's illustrations are full of bright colour and tenderness. You can check out more of her work here.

I couldn't help but make a connection to this book since I have multiracial grandchildren who are half Korean. In my case, my granddaughters don't really look like their father. Still the refrain works for them too. I can't wait to read this book to them. I'll let you know what they think later.

#IReadCanadian: Books For Readers Of All Ages November 2, 2022

I read Canadian. 

I read Canadian all year round. 

I read Canadian for readers of all ages. 

I want everyone to read Canadian. 

The books on the lists below are ones I have read since the last #IReadCanadianDay in February 2021. If you click on the category heading, it will take you to a GoodReads list of these books. From there you can find out more about them. 

If you aren't already passionate about reading Canadian, I expect that books from the following lists will get you there. 


The Prairie Chicken Dance Tour by Dumont, Dawn
Butter Honey Pig Bread by Ekwuyasi, Francesca
What Strange Paradise by El Akkad, Omar
Satellite Love by  Ferguson, Genki 
Five Little Indians by  Good, Michelle
Scarborough by  Hernandez, Catherine
The Forest of Stolen Girls by  Hur, June
The Silence of Bones by  Hur, June
The Red Palace by Hur, June
All the Quiet Places by Isaac, Brian Thomas 
Bloomsbury Girls by Jenner, Natalie 
The Jane Austen Society by Jenner, Natalie 
If I Tell You the Truth by Kaur, Jasmin 
Deep House by King, Thomas 
Disappearing Moon Cafe by Lee, Sky 
Station Eleven by Mandel, Emily St. John
Sea of Tranquility Mandel, Emily St. John
Thrive by Oppel, Kenneth
The Madness of Crowds by (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #17) Penny, Louise
The Midnight Bargain by Polk, C.L.
Zero Repeat Forever by (The Nahx Invasions, #1) Prendergast, Gabrielle
The Project by Summers, Courtney
Em by ThΓΊy, Kim 
Fight Night by  Toews, Miriam 
The Strangers by Vermette, Katherena 
We Two Alone: Stories by Wang, Jack 
A Killer in King's Cove (Lane Winslow #1) by Whishaw, Iona

SpΓ­lexm: A Weaving of Recovery, Resilience, and Resurgence
 by Campbell, Nicola I.
Okanagan Geology South by Fulton, Murray A. Roed and Robe 
On Fire: The Burning Case for a Green New Deal by Klein, Naomi 
How to Change Everything: The Young Human's Guide to Protecting the Planet and Each Other by Klein, Naomi 
A Good War: Mobilizing Canada for the Climate Emergency by Klein, Seth 
Field Notes from a Pandemic: A Journey Through a World Suspended by Lou, Ethan
Rez Rules :My Indictment of Canada's and America's Systemic Racism Against Indigenous People by Louie, Chief Clarence 
War: How Conflict Shaped Us by MacMillan, Margaret 
Not on My Watch: How a Renegade Whale Biologist Took on Governments and Industry to Save Wild Salmon by Morton, Alexandra 
Willie: The Game-Changing Story of the NHL's First Black Player by O'Ree, Willie
Stories of MΓ©tis Women: Tales My Kookum Told Me by (Indigenous Spirit of Nature) Oster, Bailey et al
North of Normal: A Memoir of My Wilderness Childhood, My Unusual Family, and How I Survived Both by Person, Cea Sunrise
Finding the Mother Tree: Discovering the Wisdom of the Forest by Simard, Suzanne
Life in the City of Dirty Water: A Memoir of Healing by Thomas-Muller, Clayton

Batter Royale by Adams, Leisl
Swim Team by  Christmas, Johnnie 
Living with Viola by  Fung, Rosena 
Grass by  Gendry-Kim, Keum Suk 
Shadow Life by  Goto, Hiromi 
My Body in Pieces by HΓ©bert, Marie-Noelle 
I Am Not Starfire by Tamaki, Mariko 
Stealing Home by Torres, J.


Rachel Bird
by Citra, Becky
Alice Fleck's Recipes for Disaster by Delaney, Rachelle
Dragons in a Bag by Elliott, Zetta
Dragon Thief by Elliott, Zetta
The Witch's Apprentice by Elliott, Zetta
Macy McMillan and the Rainbow Goddess by Green, Shari
Pine Island Home by Horvath, Polly 
Me Three by Juby, Susan 
Linked by Korman, Gordon 
The Fort by Korman, Gordon 
Under Shifting Stars by Latos, Alexandra 
Harvey Comes Home by Nelson, Colleen 
Tremendous Things by Nielsen, Susin 
Thrive by Oppel, Kenneth 
The Wherewood (Faerie Woods, #2) by  Prendergast, Gabrielle 
The Crosswood (Faerie Woods, #1) by  Prendergast, Gabrielle 
The Overwood (Faerie Woods, #3) by  Prendergast, Gabrielle 
The Stone Child (The Misewa Saga, #3) by  Robertson, David A. 
Traitors Among Us by Skrypuch, Marsha Forchuk 
Barry Squires, Full Tilt by Smith, Heather 
Weird Rules to Follow by Spencer, Kim 
The Summer We Saved the Bees by Stevenson, Robin 
The Fabulous Zed Watson! by Basil Sylvester 
Cold by Tamaki, Mariko 
The King of Jam Sandwiches Walters, Eric


The Boreal Forest: A Year in the World's Largest Land Biome by Carmichael, L.E. 
How to Change Everything: The Young Human's Guide to Protecting the Planet and Each Other by Klein, Naomi The 
Disability Experience: Working Toward Belonging by Leavitt, Hannalora 
Meet Mary Ann Shadd by MacLeod, Elizabeth & Deas, Mike
Powwow: A Celebration Through Song and Dance by Pheasant-Neganigwane, Karen

Belly of the Beast (The Fabled Stables Book, #3) by Auxier, Jonathan
Monster and Boy by Barnaby, Hannah 
Cranky Chicken: A Cranky Chicken Book 1 by Battersby, Katherine
Anne Arrives: Inspired by Anne of Green Gables by George, Kallie
Anne's School Days: Inspired by Anne of Green Gables by George, Kallie 
Anne's Tragical Tea Party by George, Kallie
Merry Christmas, Anne by George, Kallie 
Scaredy Squirrel in a Nutshell (Scaredy's Nutty Adventures, #1) by Watt, MΓ©lanie


It Happened on Sweet Street
 by Adderson, Caroline 
Pierre & Paul: Avalanche! by Adderson, Caroline 
Princesses Versus Dinosaurs by Bailey, Linda 
When I Found Grandma by Balasubramaniam, Saumiya 
Alice & Gert: An Ant and Grasshopper Story by Becker, Helaine 
Bad Dog by Boldt, Mike 
Find Fergus by Boldt, Mike 
Tough Like Mum by Button, Lana 
Abuelita and Me by Carranza, Leonarda Hug? Chua, Charlene 
Barnaby by Curtis, Andrea 
Mr. Postmouse's Rounds by Dubuc, Marianne 
Mr. Postmouse Takes a Trip by Dubuc, Marianne 
1, 2, 3, Off to School! by Dubuc, Marianne 
Bear and the Whisper of the Wind by Dubuc, Marianne 
Bear Wants to Sing by Fagan, Cary 
Ten Little Dumplings by Fan, Larissa 
Lizzy and the Cloud by Fan, Terry 
Mina by Forsythe, Matthew 
Pokko and the Drum by Forsythe, Matthew 
Out Into the Big Wide Lake by Harbridge, Paul 
ROAR-chestra!: A Wild Story of Musical Words by Heidbreder, Robert 
I Promise by Hernandez, Catherine
Weekend Dad by Hrab, Naseem 
Snow Days by Kerbel, Deborah 
The Better Tree Fort by Kerrin, Jessica Scott 
Thao by Lam, Thao 
Skunk on a String by Lam, Thao 
Nattiq and the Land of Statues: A Story from the Arctic by Landry, Barbara 
Over the Shop by Lawson, JonArno 
A Day for Sandcastles by Lawson, JonArno 
My City Speaks by Lebeuf, Darren 
Alligator Pie: The Beloved Canadian Classic by Lee, Dennis 
Going Up! by Lee, Sherry J. 
The Fog by Maclear, Kyo 
Story Boat by Maclear, Kyo 
The Big Bath House by Maclear, Kyo 
Time Is a Flower by Morstad, Julie 
The Little Ghost Who Was a Quilt by Nason, Riel 
This Is Ruby by O'Leary, Sara 
Maud and Grand-Maud by O'Leary, Sara 
A Kid Is a Kid Is a Kid by O'Leary, Sara 
Gemma and the Giant Girl by by O'Leary, Sara 
Choose Kindness by Ohi, Ruth 
Fox and Squirrel: The Best Christmas Ever by Ohi, Ruth 
My Wounded Island by Pasquet, Jacques 
Golden Threads by Rizzo, Suzanne Del 
I Talk Like a River by Scott, Jordan 
The Deepest Dig by Smith, Mark David 
When Emily Was Small by Soloy, Lauren 
I Sang You Down from the Stars by Spillett-Sumner, Tasha 
Knot Cannot by Stone, Tiffany 
Our Little Kitchen by Tamaki, Jillian 
The Doll by Tran-Davies, Nhung N. 
Lentil Soup by Tremblay, Carole 
Blue Rider by ValΓ©rio, Geraldo 
At the Pond by ValΓ©rio, Geraldo 
Raven Squawk, Orca Squeak by Vickers, Roy Henry 
Scaredy Squirrel in a Nutshell (Scaredy's Nutty Adventures, #1) by  Watt, MΓ©lanie
Animals Move by Whittingham, Jane 
My Day with Gong Gong by Yee, Sennah


Emmy Noether: The Most Important Mathematician You've Never Heard Of by Becker, Helaine 
The Boreal Forest: A Year in the World's Largest Land Biome by Carmichael, L.E. 
The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story by Cho, Tina 
My Family, Your Family! by Cole, Kathryn 
The Bat (Disguting Critters #6) by  Gravel, Elise 
Fred & Marjorie: A Doctor, a Dog, and the Discovery of Insulin by Kerbel, Deborah
Thao by Lam, Thao 
Terry Fox and Me by Leatherdale, Mary Beth 
Meet Mary Ann Shadd by MacLeod, Elizabeth & Deas, Mike
Time Is a Flower by Morstad, Julie 
A Kid Is a Kid Is a Kid by O'Leary, Sara 
My Wounded Island by Pasquet, Jacques 
On the News: Our First Talk about Tragedy by Roberts, Jillian 
I Have the Right to Save My Planet by Serres, Alain 
111 Trees: How One Village Celebrates the Birth of Every Girl by Singh, Rina Etty
Darwin and the Four Pebble Problem by Soloy, Lauren 
The Bug Girl: A True Story by Spencer, Sophia 
Burt the Beetle Doesn't Bite! by Spires, Ashley

Here are links to my 2021 #IReadCanadian lists

#IMWAYR October 31, 2022

Happy Halloween Everyone!

Welcome! It's #IMWAYR time again, when bloggers share what they have been reading and find out what others have been up to. 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. These are fabulous places to start your search  for what to read next.

Tuesday, November 2nd is I Read Canadian Day!

I'm still working on a blog post highlighting the Canadian Authors I have read since the last I Read Canadian Day. I'll have it ready for this one! The links below will take you to earlier lists.
I tried to read only Canadian books last week, but I ended up substitute teaching and given that it's Halloween season, I dragged a couple of appropriate titles from my collection to bring along for back up activities. They both got used. 

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.


Weird Rules to Follow by Kim Spencer πŸ


5 stars

by Matthew Forsythe February 15 2022 πŸ

Mina is pretty much unflappable. She isn't bothered when her father brings home a tin can to make his jokes louder, or by his collection of antique art, or even by the band of musicians. Still, when he brings home an animal he is certain is a squirrel, she's not sure. She worries and has trouble sleeping, but everything seems fine until the new creature stops eating. Then her father brings home more of these animals. None of them want to eat. The doctor is called and as soon as he identifies them as a different species entirely, trouble erupts. 
I really liked this one. The gorgeous illustrations and the quirky story are just perfect. I appreciated the message about trusting your instincts. 
As soon as I finished it I downloaded Pokko and the Drum

Pokko's family have made mistakes before: getting her a slingshot, a llama, and the balloon, but giving her a drum was the worst. It was so loud her parents couldn't hear one another talk. They sent her outside to play her drum, but told her take it easy and not draw attention to herself. They were after all, just a little frog family who lived in a mushroom. Pokko tries, but ends up leading a huge noisy band of forest animals. 
I adore the art and the humour in both of the books by Matthew Forsythe. Each one has an important message. In this case I think it's about the power of practise, of not giving up. Maybe it's also about getting your children inappropriate gifts and letting them grow into who they will become. 

5 stars

One Dark Night
 by Edna Mitchell Preston & Kurt Werth (Illustrator) September 15, 1969

This is a cumulative Halloween tale with rhythmic, repetitive language. It follows a group of Halloween trick or treaters as they head off into the night. Then they hear a terrifying squeak. In their haste to get away from the sound they fall over each other scaring themselves even more.

I wish more teachers would work with books like this. I wish we had more books like this. I brought it along with me to read to individual students when I was substitute teaching. I listened to one girl read from the levelled text she had been assigned. Then we read this together. Well she mostly read it and I helped out if she needed it. The difference between the two readings was profound. The first was stilted, dry and boring. Not long after she started the second she was into the pattern of the language and reading with expression. You can download it and read it at the Open Library

I own a copy of this book and have read it many times with children of all ages. The younger ones need a bit of help following the story line, but all of them were in awe of Tor Lokvig's paper engineering.
This pop out book takes us through different rooms in a haunted house. We follow a couple of mice as they make their way to the attic. Readers must depend on inference to follow the storyline as they integrate it with the fabulous artwork. A lot is going on, so it's easy to lose the narrative. I'm not sure it really matters.
The small groups I read it to on Friday appreciated it as much as every other group has.

Mary Ann Shad was the first woman publisher in Canada and the first black woman to publish a newspaper in North America. She was born in 1823 in Wilmington Delaware. Slavery was still legal but her family were not slaves. Her parents were involved with the Underground Railroad as station masters. In 1850, the law was changed to make it legal for any black person, free or not, to be snatched by slave catchers. Their family moved to Canada soon after that.
In what is now Windsor, Ontario, Marianne started an integrated school where skin colour didn’t matter. She wrote numerous letters to the editor about her opinions but these were either not printed or edited so that her meaning was obscured. 
In 1853 she started her own newspaper. She had to work hard to raise money for it. They sold subscriptions but had to fund raise in other ways: holding fares, bazaars, and tea parties. The newspaper was a forum to talk about the discrimination Black people, both men and women, faced. By1860 the paper had run out of funds and had to close. 
Over the years Mary Ann Shadd travelled back and forth from Canada to the United States to try and make life better for Black people. She was also very involved in the women’s suffrage movement fighting for the rights of Black women at a time when many white suffragettes didn't want Black people to have the right to vote. 
In 1869 she started night classes at Howard university to become the first Black woman to to attend law school. She was 60 years old when she graduated. Throughout her life she worked for the rights of her self and others.

This illustrated chapter book tells the story of Anne's tea party with her best friend, Diana. The two girls had a great time drinking raspberry cordial and pretending to be grown-up. Unfortunately, Marilla had mistakenly mixed up the raspberry cordial with the current wine, and Diana went home sick. Even though Marilla tried to explain, Mrs Barry, Diana's mother, was sure it was all Anne's fault and refused to let Diana have anything more to do with her.
Then one evening Diana flung open the Shirley's kitchen door. Her parents were away and her little sister was deathly ill. Matthew went for the doctor, but it was Anne who worked tirelessly all night to save Minnie May's life. Mrs Barry acknowledged that she was wrong about Anne's character and the two girls were allowed to be boon companions once again. 
I love how this series captures the essence of the original books. 

I am always content to read a Becky Citra novel. Not only does she create authentic characters, she places them in environments so real, readers experience a sense of having been there.
She does it again with Rachel Bird.
Rachel is a 14 year old teen with a 5 year old sister, Jane. Their mother died and as the story begins, they are spending time in Vancouver, BC, with an uncle they knew nothing about. During the summer holidays they are sent to live with Margaret and Wayne, grandparents they have neither met nor heard of. They end up on a ranch north of 100 Mile House in the Caribou region of British Columbia.
At first Rachel wants to just return to Vancouver, but eventually she makes connections to Margaret and Wayne; Magic, her mother's horse; new friends; and the land itself.
As a reader I couldn't help but wonder, why the mother left the family and had nothing to do with them afterwards?
Rachel wonders the same thing and as the story unfolds, secrets are forced into the open and we learn the answers.

Let me just get this on the table right off the bat. I hate books that end in cliffhangers. This one ends with a cliffhanger.
It's a good thing I was already hooked on this series or I might just refuse to read more on general principle.
Ma takes Jaxon to Chicago to a Witch and Wizard convention, but when they are there, refuses to let him attend. Instead she sets him up with a guide who shows him around the city and teaches him about the history of Black people in the area. His guide reconnects Jaxon to Blue, a trickster from the previous book. Through them he learns that he has been summoned to attend a court case at the convention, but that Ma has hidden this from him. Of course Jaxon tried to keep his phoenix egg and now hatched phoenix from her. 
In the end, Jaxon gets to the court session and ends up in a trap set by Blue and others. 

This book compares the experiences of best friends growing up on the same cul-de-sac in Prince Rupert in the 1980's. Mia, the half Indigenous narrator, lives in poverty. Lara is a middle class white girl. Class and culture matter. You can read my full review here

I am a hard core fan of cosy mysteries. If they are historical, I'm even happier. When the book is well written by a Canadian author and highlights a Canadian landscape, it's a dream come true.
It's 1946 and Lane Winslow, ex-intelligence officer, has left London and her war trauma behind her to settle in a small hamlet in the West Kootenay region of British Columbia. She's just settling in, making new friends, and dealing with an unwanted suitor, when she and her cantankerous neighbour discover a body plugging up their water system. The discovery and following machinations have her past catching up with her, and puts her smack in the frame for the murder. In the process we are introduced to a handsome police detective who doesn't want to arrest her, but might have no choice. In the end, Lane comes up with a deadly plan to draw the murderer out into the open.
I can hardly wait to start the next in the series to see what Lane gets up to next, and how her relationship with the handsome detective unfolds. 

Butt Sandwich & Tree by Wesley King  πŸ
Science Comics: Crows: Genius Birds (Science Comics) by Kyla Vanderklugt  πŸ
Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin


Death in a Darkening Mist (Lane Winslow #2) by Iona Whishaw πŸ
When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill

#MustReadFiction 22/24 

#MustReadNonFiction 14/18 one in progress

Canadian Authors 65/100 two in progress

Indigenous Authors 16/25

Goodreads Reading Challenge: 248/250

2022 Big Book Summer Challenge 7
Canada Reads shortlist 5/5