Toronto Public Library announces First & Best booklist 2009

November 26, 2009 | Media Relations

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Attention: Book Editors, Children’s Writers, Education Writers

Toronto Public Library announces First & Best booklist 2009
Because the first books you share with your child should also be the best

TORONTO (Thursday, November 26, 2009) - Toronto Public Library is pleased to announce today its third annual First & Best booklist: a selection of the best 2009 Canadian books for children from birth to five, as chosen by the Toronto Public Library.

The list includes some past First and Best authors and illustrators, including Jeremy Tankard (Boo Hoo Bird), Barbara Reid (Perfect Snow), and Marie-Louise Gay (When Stella was Very Very Small), and also features some newcomers, including Lynn Johnston and Beth Cruikshank (Farley Follows His Nose), and Robert Heidbreder (Crocodiles Play!).

“As the world’s busiest urban public library system, we see it as part of our role to promote library service to the youngest members of our community, and to champion and provide recommendations on Canadian children’s literature to children, parents and caregivers,” says Ken Setterington, Children and Youth Advocate for Library Services at Toronto Public Library.  “We recommend books on our First & Best list as the best of the year for building reading readiness and reading pleasure in children five and under.”

The First & Best list is part of Toronto Public Library’s Ready for Reading program, an approach to library services for children from birth to five years that helps parents and caregivers build early literacy skills in their children through fun, everyday activities at home and at the library. The library issued its inaugural First & Best list in 2007.    


Boo Hoo Bird
Jeremy Tankard
Scholastic Press Ltd.

Crocodiles Play!
Robert Heidbreder, illustrated by Rae Mate
Tradewind Books

Farley Follows His Nose
Lynn Johnston and Beth Cruikshank, illustrated by Lynn Johnston

Mother Goose 
Groundwood Books 

Off We Go! 
Beverley Abramson
Tundra Books 

Perfect Snow
Barbara Reid
North Winds Press  
Same Same
Marthe Jocelyn, illustrated by Tom Slaughter
Tundra Books

When Stella Was Very, Very Small
Marie-Louise Gay
Groundwood Books

Wiggle, Giggle Tickle Train 
Nora Hilb and Sharon Jennings
Annick Press

You're Mean, Lily Jean
Frieda Wishinsky, illustrated by Kady MacDonald Denton
Scholastic Canada Ltd. 

The list is available on the library’s website (KidsSpace), and all titles on the list can be borrowed
from the library.

Pre-reading skills highlighted by Ready for Reading are: print motivation (a positive attitude toward books and reading); phonological awareness (the ability to hear the smaller sounds in words); vocabulary; narrative skills (the ability to understand and tell stories); print awareness (noticing print and understanding its usefulness); and letter knowledge.

Toronto Public Library is the world's busiest urban public library system. Every year, more than 16 million people visit our 99 branches and borrow almost 30 million items. To learn more about Toronto Public Library, visit our website at or call Answerline at 416-393-7131.


Media Contact:
Michelle Chau, Communications Officer, 416-397-5925
[email protected]