I Just Finished Reading...Top Picks for January

January 15, 2016 | Diane

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Calendar and Book
Each month I share my favourite new books for 6 – 12 year-olds that have both kid AND parent appeal. I hope you enjoy them, too!


Willy's StoriesWilly’s Stories
By Anthony Browne
Ages 6 – 9
Willy the chimpanzee invites readers young and old to enter the library and join him on adventures based on classic tales from children’s literature. Each two-page spread features a snippet of a familiar plot, (such as Peter Pan, The Wind in the Willows and my personal fave, Robinson Crusoe), and an illustration of Willy engaged in the famous scene. Kids will like figuring out which books are referenced and searching for the drawings of books hidden in each illustration. The built-in prompts are good conversation starters for families reading this book aloud, while building storytelling skills at the same time. And with references to ten classics, readers may discover their next great read!

Canadian Geographic Canada for Kids - 1000 Awesome FactsCanadian Geographic Canada for Kids: 1000 Awesome Facts
By Aaron Kylie
Ages 9 - 12
Kids who love world records, facts and trivia will be impressed with this Canadian-specific book. And you probably will be too! For instance – did you know that a Canadian holds the world record for chainsaw juggling? Or that the Canadian mint created the first $1 million coin? Stuffed with facts, photos and interesting tidbits about Canadian history, geography and culture, this is an ideal starting point for families to discuss what makes our country so interesting. Torontonians will especially enjoy all of the hometown references, but some things may be better left unknown, such as: the longest native snake (grey ratsnake) is typically found in southwestern Ontario, and is adept at climbing trees (shudder).

Full Cicada MoonFull Cicada Moon
By Marilyn Hilton
Ages 9 - 12
When I first cracked the cover of this book, I wasn’t sure if I’d like it – I tend to find books written in verse hard to follow. But I’m glad I gave it a chance because this historical novel is really good. It follows the story of Mimi, a seventh grader from a mixed race family, who moves with her parents from California to Vermont in 1969. While Mimi is still the same girl – she enjoys science, wants to take shop classes, and dreams of being an astronaut - in this new community, she’s challenged by questions of “what” she is instead of who she is. Ultimately, it’s her exceptional inner strength and resilience that define her and make her such a remarkable and memorable character.

Here’s a sneak peek at what I’m reading for February…

Books to Read for February