Sunday, December 04, 2005

Globe and Mail's Special Kid Lit Feature

This weekend's Globe and Mail has a special 28-paged Kid Lit feature in its book section. Their selections seem pretty standard and North American, but there are some interesting tidbits, nonetheless. One of the articles, "Walking in a KidLit Wonderland" is available free online.

Does anybody else have any good books-as-gifts picks for the season?


At 3:16 PM, Anonymous Louise said...

Hey Lyndsay,

Courtesy of my newspaper subcriptions - here`s one of the other articles of interest from Saturday`s suplement:


Who Runs This Country, Anyway?: A Guide to Canadian Government, by Joanne Stanbridge, Scholastic, 74 pages, $7.99, ages 9 to 11 With the federal election looming in January, there's no time like the present to introduce children to the pleasures and duties of informed citizenship. To that end, Kingston, Ont., author-illustrator Joanne Stanbridge (Famous Dead Canadians ) conducts -- through the persons of Zoe and Nathan -- a very accessible tour through the complexities of the Canadian parliamentary system, from voting to running for office to how a bill is passed. All this is encompassed in a tour of Parliament Hill. Paul Martin, Stephen Harper, Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe should have been so lucky.

I'm So Embarrassed!, by Robert Munsch, illustrated by Michael Martchenko, Scholastic, 32 pages, $6.99, ages 3 to 8.

Andrew's mother always embarrasses him. On a trip to the mall to buy new shoes she does it again and again. She spits on her hand and smoothes down his hair -- yuck. Then Andrews's kissy aunt plants a big lipsticky kiss on his face -- yuck. Soooo embarrassed, Andrew hides in a trashcan. But then, he and his friend Taylor-Jae hatch a plan to give his mom a taste of her own embarrassing medicine.

Another hilarious outing by perennial kids' favourites Munsch and Martchenko, who empower young readers by almost always letting them gain the upper hand with gross grown-ups., written and illustrated by Ralph Steadman, Anderson Press, 28 pages, $11.95, ages 4 to 9.

This is a fable for the dot-com age. Blotches of brazen, brilliant colour dance across the pages of acclaimed British author/artist Ralph Steadman's whimsical story of the little dot that lives inside a computer. When the computer shuts off, little dot whizzes through cyberspace, taking readers on a zany trip to a castle on the hill to meet his friend the Duchess of Amalfi, and her beau, the Duke of Bogshott. They all live happily ever after; the Duke and Duchess wed, and little dot gets to be the Best Dot, all dressed up in red ink.

The Pocket Timeline of Ancient Rome, by Katharine Wiltshire; The Pocket Timeline of Ancient Mesopotamia, by Katharine Wiltshire; The Pocket Timeline of Ancient Greece, by Emma McAllister; The Pocket Timeline of Ancient Egypt, by Helen Strudwick, Oxford University Press, each 32 pages plus foldouts, $16.95, ages 8 to 12.

Beautifully illustrated with colour photographs of artifacts and antiquities from The British Museum, these pocket guides to the history of ancient worlds offer inquisitive kids fascinating facts about the personalities, major events and achievements of lost civilizations, whose legacies continue to inform our modern world. Eye-catching 12-page, fold-out timelines can be detached for a vivid display of the march of history.

Scholastic Book of World Records 2006, Scholastic, 320 pages, $12.99, ages 9 to 12.

Who is the world's all-time richest person? Who produced baseball's most careers hits? Which is the country with the most computers? Which country consumes the most potato chips? More than 300 "astonishing" and "amazing" records from sports, pop culture, technology, money and more are contained in the latest edition of the Book of World Records . Easy to read, with lots of colourful graphics and photos, this book will appeal to budding trivia buffs and young know-it-alls.

Tales of the Monkey King, by Benjamin Santamaria, illustrations by Brian Deines, Tundra, unpaginated, $22.99, ages 6 to 8 Human-rights activist, author and exile Benjamin Santamaria worked for years among the street children of Mexico City, giving them courage with tales of the Monkey King, who faces great danger and emerges victorious against incredible odds. Since fleeing to Canada in 2002, Santamaria has worked at building bridges between the children of Canada and those of Latin America. In this book, the Monkey King's adventures take him to the Kingdom of Death and back. Brian Deines's bold and lovely paintings underscore the story's themes.

Moon and Star: A Christmas Story, by Robin Muller, North Winds, 30 pages, $19.99, ages 4 to 8 Moon is a toyshop dog, petted by customers and loved by the shopkeeper.

Of all the toys in the shop, however, his favourite was a little blue porcelain cat that he called Star. But one day Star is sold, and the disconsolate dog trails her to the new owner's house. His heart is broken there, but an angel appears and performs a Christmas miracle. Muller's gorgeous, colourful paintings are the perfect complements to his warm, sweet story.

At 4:00 PM, Anonymous Louise said...

As for ideas for books for gifts. As per my other post - I am now a big fan of "I stink" by Kate McMullan - never seen a child more excited by a book.

My personal children's favorite: The Monster at the End of the Book, by Your Lovable, Huggable, Furry Old Pal Grover.

I'm betting the Narnia Chronicles will be a hot ticket this holiday season given the movie release of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (I was a huge fan as a kid and will be dragging my boyfriend to it - though one of his friends looked excited by the prospect of seeing the film, so he may be coming around).

As for adult books, I don't know. I am in the process of reading Bachlor Girl by Betsy Israel, which is a fun look at "single women" through the ages. Enjoying it. After that I am planning on making my way through Don Boudria's memoires "From Kitchen to Cabinet".


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