Dorothy would love to visit your school or organization to talk about creating a picture book! Suitable for all ages.
Contact Dorothy through her publisher: Fitzhenry & Whiteside.
Autumn Kids’ Book Tour*
Come and say hello and have your copy of
Summer North Coming read & signed by the author!
Lethbridge Saturday November 9th, Chapters, 1:00 pm
Fort McMurray Saturday November 23rd, Coles-Indigo, 12:00 pm
* cancelled if roads are closed due to a snow storm
As a parent who has read stories over and over again, I appreciate children’s stories which are fun, lyrical, and worthy of being read hundreds of times. Jamberry is one of those books.
This book was written and illustrated by Bruce Degen. Most children’s picture books do not have the same person as author and illustrator, but this one has equally strong verse and picture-storytelling.
The best picture books offer additional story through the artwork. As an example, the text begins: “One berry, two berry, pick me a blueberry…” Immediately, the illustration shows an anthropomorphized bear, interacting with a young child, sharing berries. From this first window into the magical world of the story, the reader knows to expect a fabulous world, similar to a fairy-land. Another clue is the marshmallows on tall grass, which adds to the nonsensical world.
Another aspect I like about this rhyming story is that the rhyme shifts from one type, to another, and then another. It has the affect of shifting gears when driving through a varied landscape.
In my own poetic picture book, Summer North Coming – Winter North Coming, I chose to carefully follow a rhyming scheme throughout the story. It is a safe bet to do so, and it seemed natural; but I commend Degen for breaking that tendency and going out on a limb to create something unique.
First published in 1983, it is a new classic which I buy again and again as part of a new baby gift-bundle.
by Ursula K. Le Guin
Personally, I have never been a huge fan of fantasy. Although, I recently read that those who are not, have not come across the right book for them. This adage proved true for me, as I enjoyed this story.
The Tombs of Atuan is book two of this series, but I know I would not have been interested in the first book without reading this one. I think this instalment is a good entry point for those who are leery of the fantasy genre. There are some inventive place-names, and people-names, yet not so many that it detracts from the plot which is in turns mesmerizing with its clarity of setting and gripping when the main character discovers an intruder in the tombs.
As a young girl, the main character is taken from her parents to become the next, the always, high priestess of the tombs. She is carried along without having any say whatsoever in her life, until age fifteen, when the visitor comes. In reading the afterword written by the author, it is interesting that Ursula K. Le Guin felt she could not trespass beyond the life experience of most women of the time, when she wrote the story in 1969. Yet, together with her new friend, the main character is empowered to change her life. And he, along with her as his new friend, is able to find freedom from the tombs.
It is truly an affecting story about friendship between a male and female, as well as a coming-of-age story for girls with themes about identity.
This is suitable as an independent read for ages 12 and up.