This darling Yorkshire Terrier is Mister Socks. He belongs to Groundwood Books publicist Cindy Ma. Cindy reports that Mister Socks responds to commands in English and Cantonese. Here he is making a start on Mandarin! Thank you Mister Socks, my first canine reader.
Qin Leng, my better half for Norman, Speak!, is interviewed here by Norman’s loving owner. And have a look at Qin in action!
Nicola and June Bug get their first review, and it’s a good one. Kirkus Reviews writes: “Characters are gloriously quirky… Nicola navigates concepts of hell and goodness, looking for reasonable answers to ponderous questions. Though paranormal explanations are only gently hinted at, the angelic twist at the conclusion is satisfyingly appropriate and more about human goodness than evangelizing—entirely in keeping with the book.”
Read the whole review here.
I’m excited that Jasper John Dooley, Left Behind has been nominated for a Chocolate Lily Award in the new Chapter Book category. British Columbia kids will vote on their favourite BC book. Read more about the award and all the nominees here. Yeah, Jasper!
I was honoured to visit Lord Strathcona Elementary School last week as a guest of First Book Canada. I presented Norman, Speak! to more than 60 Grade One students, all of whom received a copy of the book thanks to HSBC and First Book Canada. What a great start, Norman! Here are some photos of the event!
I had a wonderful three days at Literacy for Life in Saskatoon. A special treat was the gift of these three portraits of me by Grade One artists:
Artist: Sam E.
Artist: Stacy Z.
Artist: Austin W.
This starred review from Deirdre Baker in Quill and Quire made my day! Baker writes, “This short novel is a triumph of its kind, suffused with refreshing, intelligent wackiness. Each character is precisely drawn; Jasper is eccentric, enthusiastic, and realistic, and so is Isabel, with her interests in babies and marriage, trampolines, and drum sets. This third volume confirms the series’ exceptional subtlety and high literary quality.”
Read the whole review.
I’m excited to be launching my first picture book, Norman, Speak! with the beloved middle-grade author Sarah Ellis. I hope you can join us!
Here’s a little piece about how I came to write Norman, Speak! on the Groundwood Books blog. Read it here.
Children’s author Susan Hughes publishes a thoughtful blog on Open Book Toronto. She interviewed me about my Jasper John Dooley series in her post Writing a Fiction Series: Ins, Outs, Ups and Downs. Read Part One here. Read Part Two here.