Category Archives: social issues

The Tiger Who Would Be King

What happens when a tiger wakes up and decides he wants to be king of the beasts? This anti-war fable by James Thurber explores the worst-case scenario where animals fight until they aren’t quite sure what they are fighting about. “Moral: You can’t very … Continue reading

Posted in Love that art, Picture books, social issues | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The Cat At The Wall

Through the eyes of a cat, we see the story of two Israeli soldiers in Bethlehem who take over a home in order to watch for terrorists. While at first the home seems empty, Clare, the cat, shows them that … Continue reading

Posted in Canadian author/illustrator, Children's novels, social issues | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Counting By 7s

What makes a home? Is it a sister? Parents? A brother? A backyard filled with plants, plants you love? This is what I thought about as I read Holly Goldberg Sloan‘s Counting By 7s, a beautifully, thoughtfully written book about twelve-year-old … Continue reading

Posted in Character-driven, Children's novels, social issues, strong characters, Tween book | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Home of the Brave

Home of the Brave, a novel-in-verse by Katherine Applegate, is a moving story about Kek, who as a refugee from Sudan who as seen atrocities never loses hope of seeing his mother again. This story has an authentic and perceptive voice, beautiful language and … Continue reading

Posted in Children's novels, Poetry, social issues, strong characters, Teen/Young Adult, Voice, Word choice | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Corner of the Universe

Set in the 1960s, A Corner of the Universe is a favourite of my eleven-year-old daughter, so of course, I had to read it (ordered to, actually). I love the 1960s, and if you do too, be aware that this isn’t about Civil … Continue reading

Posted in Children's novels, historical, social issues, strong characters | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Wonder

“I know I’m not an ordinary ten-year-old kid.” Although August doesn’t look ordinary, he feels ordinary on the inside and as he narrates how others react to his craniofacial anomaly, especially as he begins traditional school for the first time. … Continue reading

Posted in Children's novels, social issues, strong characters | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

All My Noble Dreams and Then What Happens

There aren’t many upper middle grade books set in 1920s India. Rosalind, from a British colonist family, loves India and consorts with Ghandi followers, much to her military father’s chagrin. She tries to meld her two worlds: the one where … Continue reading

Posted in Children's novels, historical, Michigan author/illustrator, social issues | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The One and Only Ivan

Living at Big Top Mall, Ivan, the gorilla, knows only the world he can see through a thick glass wall and hear about from Bob, the stray dog who visits via the small broken piece in the cage. Wise Stella, … Continue reading

Posted in Children's novels, social issues, strong characters, Voice | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

One For The Murphys

Determining who really loves you can be a hard task for anyone, especially a foster kid. Carley’s not sure of her own mother’s love–would she really choose her husband over her  only daughter? Living with the Murphys upends Carley’s notion … Continue reading

Posted in Children's novels, social issues | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Slowpoke

If this fast-paced world is spinning your head around, pick up Slowpoke, an easy reader by Emily Smith Pearce and illustrated by Canadian Scot Richie. When eating her Oaty Loops one-by-one causes Fiona to miss the bus, she is sent to Speed … Continue reading

Posted in Canadian author/illustrator, Easy Readers, social issues | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments