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  1. molly beau to belle stories a subdivision of beau to beau books Manual
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He's out there - nytheatre. For ten-year-old neatnik Norman, sharing a room with his messy older brother Michael is a nightmare-with heaps of crumpled paper, clothes strewn about, and piles of smelly, dirty socks everywhere! One day, Michael sends away for some 'amazing Beans', and before long, the boys are the proud owners of two giant plants.

But as the plants grow taller and taller, the boys realize that their socks are mysteriously disappearing! This tale of a mother accused and convicted of the deaths of her two young babies is a horrific yet powerful. By adopting a form commonly associated with verbatim theatre, the subject is imbued with a clarity that is at once both unrelenting and utterly engaging, as it slowly emerges that these events are not truth at all, but Kelly masquerading theatrical illusion as truth.

What unfolds is a bleak yet tender exploration of grief, exploitation, and the innate hypocrisies of reportage. One of Manhattan's most established play festivals, the Samuel French Off Off Broadway Short Play Festival fosters the work of emerging writers, giving them the exposure of publication and representation. From the initial pool of 1, submissions, the Final Thirty plays were chosen to be performed over a period of one week. A panel of judges comprised of celebrity playwrights, artistic directors, and theatre professionals nominated one or more of each evening's plays as finalists.

Out of these plays, six winners listed below were chosen by Samuel French, Inc. Suzanne's attempts to write about and speak with Beethoven are continuously punctuated by radio broadcasts about her husband who is missing under mysterious circumstances. Mediated throughout by snatches of Ghanaian string music juxtaposed against strains of Beethoven's Fidelio, the Drama exists within a displacement of time and space, fluctuating between Vienna, austria, in eurocentric space , and Legon, Ghana, in colonized African-American space.

Set in the Brownsville neighborhood of Brooklyn, brownsville song b-side for tray is a powerful tale of resilience in the face of tragedy. Moving fluidly between past and present, this bold new play tells the story of Tray, a spirited African-American year-old and his family, who must hold on to hope when Tray's life is cut short. Kimber Lee's lyrical social drama about the shocking death of a young African-American teenager is a poignant story for our time, and demands the attention of audiences far and wide.

Scott Fitzgerald. It concerns Zelda's struggle to realize herself as a recognized artist in her own right. Memories are triggered as Zelda transforms a Bartender into all the people male as well as female who have played a part in shaping her self-image, and insights are gained. Both Zelda and the Barman come to understand their lives in new ways. Welcome back to First Baptist of Ivy Gap. Add Joseph J. Is he coming home or running away? Where is his wife everyone hates?

And how did he get all that money? Theresa Rebeck pens a theatrically inventive mash up of contemporary American life and the history that got us to this politically polarized age. It's fiercely funny story explores the lives of high school students, teachers, and their families as they cope in a world of real personal problems and extremist ideological rhetoric that gets so heated that Jesus, Saint Paul, Joan of Arc, John Adams, Patrick Henry and Benjamin Franklin, among others, show up to weigh in and mix it up.

Lucy is an influential 8-year old with a passion for righting wrongs and a "magic" index finger that doles out justice. When Lucy sees something she thinks is unfair, she points her magic finger at the problem, and it causes all sorts of mischief! One day, when visiting her friend William Gregg on his family's farm, Lucy observes the Gregg family shoot a group of ducks. Horrified, Lucy she points her magic finger at the family and oh, boy that little finger makes things topsy turvey!

Overnight the tables are turned. Can Lucy make things right? Best for ages Jerome Teppel, a recently married, fairly well-off CPA, discovers that among his wife Francine's monthly purchases was a gun. Shortly after that, Jerome is informed by his neighbor, Lenore Franklin, that his wife and her husband are having a torrid affair. What ensues next is murder, betrayal, a little sex and a lot of laughs.

Set in the tony resort town of Newport, RI, during the height of the Jazz Age in summer, , Theophilus North follows the exploits of the title character as he searches for adventure and his place in the world. Alida is a reclusive writer of fiction slowly losing her memories. Reluctantly, she has come to depend upon a young caregiver to complete her final book - an autobiography. Delving into the dark woods of her past, the two women wrestle over the nature of language, loneliness, and the essential self.

Just beyond the elegant dining room of an Upper East Side restaurant, four busboys angle for shifts, pray for tips, and cling to dreams of life beyond their dingy back-of-house grind. Expertly juggling delicate entrees, fussy customers and beer-swilling line cooks, the young men face off with management and each other. As tensions reach a boiling point, how far will each of them go to see his own manana come?

Madame Bovary is the tragic, yet scintillating story of a woman who longed for a life she could never fully achieve. Emma Bovary is a woman who desires the illustrious and romantic world she has only read about in books or observed from afar. As this desire grows, Emma must seek to fulfill it, whatever the cost, in an ultimate quest to become the Madame Bovary of her wildest and most passionate dreams. Telling Emma's story through the eyes of her own daughter, Adrienne Kennedy brings a fresh and exciting approach to this classic novel.

Though she has had vivid fantasies about Spain, the Conquistador and his cruel and bloodthirsty approach to life were never part of them Through him and a maze of real and imaginary characters--including her best friend Diversion, a Mayan Ancient, and a very familiar guitar player--Barbara sorts through the leftovers and finds her Duende. James now runs from his sadistic sculptress girlfriend and Louise follows him to their mother's cabin in the woods, where the ghosts of their very different pasts haunt them in the form of memories of love gone wrong, parenting gone crazy, and in the flesh of Mommy's former student-who is convinced he is the reincarnation of Picasso himself.

Like Picasso moved from his Blue Period to his rosy painting of the Family of Saltimbanques to his legendary Cubist self-creation, these survivors reinvent themselves using the materials of experience and the force of imagination. Who the Green Man is to each of them is a mystery only they can help each other unravel. A play about love, loss and other things made of stone. Featuring two original songs by the author, sung by the Green Man.

Enter an America where the government is in your kitchen, sniffing for outlawed cigarettes! The extreme anti-smoking laws test the sanity of one suburban family. Pam is having an impossible time trying to quit. Her husband Ernie retreats to the basement to relive the rock star dreams of his youth, while their teenage son Jimmy only turns away from his videogames to explore his gangster rapper persona.

This original and hilarious new musical will leave you craving for more! With pissed-off Pikachus, steam punk armies, stood-up Sailor Moons and roller-blading monsters on the prowl, it's easy to get lost in the Inferno-esque anime convention where the fans, the otakus, and the geeks prowl. But to score a rare meeting with their comic book idol, teenage outcasts Dayna and Honey will take on obsessive magic players, Jedis and elfs, cosplayers and convention guards - through all nine flights of Ohio's Dante's Fire-Con. But when his final client quietly disappears into the remote Idaho wilderness, Walt discovers that his previously unwavering moral compass no longer points the way.

With profound humanity and subtlety, A Great Wilderness navigates complex moral terrain, exploring the shifting motives and inconstant strength of our personal convictions. This free structured look at the Challenger disaster places the teacher who died with six others as they hurtled into space at the center of an exploration of our need to reach beyond ourselves and dare the universe. Defying Gravity artfully interweaves the past with the present and the lives of participants and bystanders, drawing parallels among painter Claude Monet's artistic quest, the zest of the teacher selected to the first civilian astronaut, the perspectives of her grieving daughter, the aspirations of elderly tourists who drive their Winnebago to Florida to watch the space shot and dream of hotels in space, the guilt felt by a NASA mechanic and his girl friend's fear of heights.

Mark Morton and his reluctant sixteen year old son, Danny, share a Palm Springs motel for several days. They are there for family week at a rehab center where Gwen, Mark's wife and Danny's mother is trying to recover from severe alcoholism. While Mark has great hopes for Gwen's recovery, Danny has none. An emotional and poignant journey with some laughs along the way as father and son discover how little they actually know about one another. When she discovers that her husband has been lured into the local Communist party by way of a method acting class and that there is a left wing plot afoot to abolish the star system, Mary wages a private war to save her husband, her country and billing over the title.

The McCarthy era is turned on its head in this novel take on a serious subject. New York, A lifetime of hard knocks has left her bitter and with a chip on her shoulder the size of Mount Rushmore. Irish rejects this look into her future but when indeed everything comes to pass, she desperately tries to no avail to change her fate. At the moment when Chick LaFountain is about to shoot Irish for real, Albert makes a deal with the Lord to save her life.

However, his good deed must be an anonymous one. Like Scrooge, Irish has a chance to begin again. She saves Valerie and with the help of her devoted longtime admirer, a busboy named Eddie, and her faithful maid, Peona, has Chick sent up the river. Irish and her friends go caroling in Times Square, and for one brief moment, she remembers the wonderful gift that Albert the angel has given her. He blows her a kiss and she feels it against her cheek.

Albert is able to return to Heaven knowing Irish will be all right. The Nether is a virtual wonderland that provides total sensory immersion. Just log in, choose an identity and indulge your every desire. But when a young detective uncovers a disturbing brand of entertainment, she triggers an interrogation into the darkest corners of the imagination. Winner of the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, The Nether is both a serpentine crime drama and haunting sci-fi thriller that explores the consequences of living out our private dreams.

Kenyatta Shakur is alone. His wife has died, and now, this former Black Revolutionary and political prisoner, is desperate to reconnect with his estranged daughter Nina. If Kenyatta truly wants to reconcile his past, he must first conquer his most challenging revolution of all - fatherhood. Sunset Baby is an energised, vibrant and witty look at the point where the personal and political collide. One of the most exciting and distinctive undiscovered voices in America.

A worker dies suspiciously while cleaning augers at an animal food pellet factory, bringing two years of intricately tangled relationships to light. The factory owners--a pair of estranged brothers feuding over their late father's estate--are only concerned with how this incident will interfere with their plans to sell the struggling factory.

Moving back and forth in time to reveal how their respective stories converge, Dead Peasants is a darkly comic thriller that examines greed, dependency and culpability in a desolate prairie town. When most people speak of their high school experience it usually has more to do with the social part than the academic part. The real life lessons are learned outside of the classroom and in the halls, cafeteria, parking lots, and anywhere students are allowed to be themselves.

It is this social interaction that is the focus of Third Class and the settings in which all of the scenes and monologues take place. Third Class is the fourth in Brad Slaight's "Class" plays series and continues to explore the school experience from the students' POV via the many experiences they encounter as they interact with each other.

Like the other Class Plays, Third Class addresses a variety of contemporary topics and issues, both humorous and serious, that make up the important and unpredictable high school years. Yo, Vikings! This play is based on the folk story "Juan Darien" told by Horacio Quiroja, relating the moralistic value of "a life for a life" and the transformation it creates in the life of the avenger.

An animal becomes a human and then reverts back to an animal by an act of revenge. The play can best be told in dramatically en masque with some choreography. The text for this work is but the skeleton upon which the work is co-constructed by the performers in a manner more than is true of most plays. Building it out requires music, choreography, magic and masque. It is also an ensemble piece. The story told in the verse should be enacted in dance, e. Charles Ives Take Me Home is a comedic and poignant story of dissonance, defense, and devotion. Past and present violently collide when Lotte, an English tourist who repairs dolls, is captured while on a tour of current-day Troy and flung back into the ancient camp of Euripides' Trojan Women.

Lotte Jones, a doll repair expert, needs a vacation. When the camp is torched, the women are enslaved and Lotte is rescued by the British Embassy. Part contemporary drama, part homage to Euripides' Trojan Women, Trojan Barbie recasts the legendary fall of the city of Troy against the vivid reality of modern warfare.

Poetic, compassionate, and tinged with great warmth and humor, Trojan Barbie is an epic war story with a most unlikely heroine, who always looks on the bright side even as past and present collide about her. Responding to pleas from moms who saw the first two shows, the writers understood that comedy would abound as they experienced their own torment and terror as the moms of teenagers. From the list of parenting fails to the Seven Dwarves of the puberty years: Surly, Grumpy, Moody, Sulky, Secretive, Fresh and Spoiled, this play captures the laughs and tears of motherhood again.

Four separate characters tell their individual stories, either directly to the audience in monologues, in scenes with each other or in the always popular round robin of 'Things Moms Say. This comedy explores how gossip, politics and opinions of art can decide who is the most deserving. A tart, sharp skewing of small town cultural wars. In Lauren Yee's whimsical and poignant new play The Hatmaker's Wife, a young woman moves in with her boyfriend expecting domestic bliss, but instead has trouble getting comfortable. Her strange new home seems determined to help out - and soon the walls are talking.

They reveal the magical tale of an old hat-maker and his long-suffering wife, who runs away with his favorite hat. This sweet and surreal story bends time and space to redefine the idea of family, home, and true love itself. Nate Wright, a detention-riddled sixth grader and drummer for the greatest garage band in the history of the galaxy, enslave the Mollusk!

What will he do? Somewhere Fun reunites the two women thirty-five years later on Madison Avenue, one windy fall day. Evie Malone- gamer girl, college senior and confirmed virgin- has it all figured out. Not only does she command a top-ranked guild in Warcraft with her online boyfriend, she also makes a little cash on the side writing love letters for people who've screwed up their relationships.

Love is like Warcraft, after all. It's all about strategies, game plans, and not taking stupid risks. Well, that's what she thinks. In Real Life. And no amount of gaming expertise will help her out when she finds herself with a non-virtual, totally real, and incredibly cute boyfriend, who wants more from her than she's willing to give. From the winner of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, comes a story about friendship and the complex though essential role of women in wartime.

Through triumph and tragedy, she and her sisters in flight suits learn as much about themselves as they do about airplanes. As the war rages over there, the women form a sisterhood that cannot be broken, and Virginia must make a decision that will change her life forever. With a cast of nine vibrant female characters, Decision Height offers a look into an underrecognized subset of American heros and revises history into herstory. And the expensive life is just what Simone is living these days, as personal assistant to Michaela Kell, trophy wife of an absurdly rich and often absent New York ad man.

This keenly observed comedy about class, family and the choices that shape who we are unfolds in real time, fast, furious and funny. Underneath a glamorous Post-Soviet Moscow studded with dangerously high heels, designer bags, and luxe fur coats, she discovers an enchanted motherland teeming with evil stepmothers, wicked witches, and ravenous bears. Annie must learn how to become the heroine of a story more mysterious and treacherous than any childhood fairy tale: her own. This subversive story haunts the audience, and carries a powerful message for young women living in a world where not everything ends up happily ever after.

Award-winning playwright Meg Miroshnik transports her audience to Poor Prairie, the dusty, desolate town where fifteen-and-a-half year-old Jean has been exiled as caretaker for her wild-child cousin, Almeda. Inspired by the flourishing and the decline of high school girls' basketball teams in the s rural Midwest, The Tall Girls asks: who can afford the luxury of play? And what is the cost of childhood? Featuring a stong ensemble of female characters, The Tall Girls examines issues of class and gender amidst the historic s Dust Bowl. Day after day they struggle with infertility, and Hannah herself is on the verge of being laid off.

Will they survive? Will their relationship? Esteemed playwright, Allison Moore, deaftly weaves comedy into the fabric of her topical story. The economic collapse has affected Hannah and David's relationship, and Moore's comedy subversely captures the truth burried beneath the laughs. Cougar The Musical unleashes three divine but disillusioned women who develop a taste for hot, young men. They let their inner cougar roar and purr, finding self-love and empowerment in the process. The sexy, ferocious cast of three fabulous-over-forty women and one multi-talented boy toy sing and dance their way through a satiating range of original songs, from grinding blues, to doo-wop, to pop to "Julio," a romantic ballad, sung to a vibrator.

Behind a tall church pulpit, a fire-and-brimstone preacher delivers a shocking sermon to his congregation. On the tropical sands of a deserted island, two lesbians come together. And at the home of a young boy Sutter, a mother scolds him for reading Jackie Collins romance novels. With variety-show vivacity, outrageous humor, and real heart and soul, it tests how we talk about human desire and racial stereotypes at home, in church, and on the corner.

The famous consulting detective Sherlock Holmes and his friend and colleague Dr. John Watson are called in to investigate a most intriguing mystery: What could have frightened Sir Charles Baskerville to death? Is there an ancient curse on the Baskerville family? With a dash of humor, this thrilling feast culminates on the fog-bound reaches of Dartmoor, where finally the secret of The Hound of the Baskervilles is revealed.

Perfect Harmony is a musical comedy about the greatest a cappella group in high school history, eighteen-time national champions, the Acafellas. Through song and story, we see these students grapple with the weighty issues of truth, love, and what constitutes appropriate choreography for Nationals.

As the story unfolds, we learn not just about these students themselves but also about the true nature of harmony. JC Lee's probing play about a suspicious teenager addresses issues of privilege, race, and trust. When a teacher makes an alarming discovery about Luce, an all-star high school student, Luce's parents are forced to reckon with their idealized image of their son, adopted years ago from a war-torn African country. Told primarily from the perspective of the adults, Luce also raises questions about the roles that parents and teachers play in the lives of these teenage students.

In a theatre dressing room in Poland, an elderly and sick Aldridge prepares to play King Lear. The intrusion of a young female journalist forces him to look back on the defining moment of his illustrious career. Thirty years previously, Edmund Kean, one of the greatest actors of his generation, collapses on the Theatre Royal stage in London, and Pierre Laporte, theatre manager and friend, asks Aldridge to replace him as Othello. At the same time Parliament is preparing to vote in favour of abolishing slavery in all British colonies. Opinions are fiercely divided.

The American-born Aldridge performs successfully at the Theatre Royal but the reactions of the cast and critics are complex and divisive. He is not allowed to fulfil his engagement and the betrayal of a dear friend changes the course of his life. In The Realistic Joneses, we meet Bob and Jennifer and their new neighbors, John and Pony, two suburban couples who have even more in common than their identical homes and their shared last names.

As their relationships begin to irrevocably intertwine, the Joneses must decide between their idyllic fantasies and their imperfect realities. Joe Taylor, a retired actor, moves into a prison-turned-elder-care facility shortly after the demise of Medicare and the election of Dick Cheney to President. There he discovers a community of loveable, irascible inmates hell-bent on bucking the dehumanizing system in which they have landed.

Together, this band of aging misfits rediscovers purpose and dignity in the face of a system mightily stacked against them. A delightful comedy with bite from Katie Forgette, that dares to confront the issue of aging in America. How's a queen to keep her head in the middle of a revolution? Marie Antoinette delights and inspires her French subjects with her three-foot tall wigs and extravagant haute couture. But times change and even the most fashionable queens go out of style. In the humorous and haunting Marie Antoinette, idle gossip turns more insidious as the country revolts, demanding liberte, egalite, fraternite!

The unmistakable playwright of Stunning, David Adjmi, offers a new fierce and furious play about intimate human relationships. Carol and Jerry celebrate their anniversary with friends Martin and Judy. But an evening of haute cuisine and expensive wine is cut short when Martin, no longer able to repress years of frustration, lashes out at the people he loves. Soon, the facade of their pristine American lives shatters. With ferocious humor and violent turns, David Adjmi's searing drama lays bare the vast desolation that lies beneath a quiet dinner with friends.

By Karen L. Gibson

As the girls vie for the coveted position, old friendships and loyalties give way to ambition and betrayal. This "perfect" scheme goes awry and leads to a wild path of twists and reversals plotted by an eccentric rogues gallery of outrageous schemers. Expect Busch's signature blend of quick-witted banter and gender-bending hijinks in this new play from the master of Off-Broadway farce. In , Washington D. But it was all about to change. In this play spanning 30 years and six presidential administrations, Hester Ferris throws Georgetown dinner parties that can change the course of Washington's politics.

But when her beloved son suddenly turns up with an ambitious Reaganite girlfriend and a shocking new conservative world view, Hester must choose between preserving her family and defending the causes she's spent her whole life fighting for. From the prolific pen of novelist, essayist, and playwright Anthony Giardina comes a play about politics in family, and families in politics.

A searing new drama, The City of Conversation delves into the ever-changing tapestry of U. Government and the people who shape it off the senate floor. It's in Detroit. Motown music is getting the party started, and Chelle and her brother Lank are making ends meet by turning their basement into an after-hours joint.

But when a mysterious woman finds her way into their lives, the siblings clash over more much more than the family business. As their pent-up feelings erupt, so does their city, and they find themselves caught in the middle of the '67 riots. One year ago, Edmond died in a horrible fire. But on a stormy night at the cemetery where he rests, the secrets from his past will finally refuse to stay buried; and those he left behind will finally refuse to stay silent.

Suffering from a profound sense of disappointment after her 40th birthday, Sonia flees her family and goes on a binge of prescription Zoloft and greasy chimichangas. This irreverent story examines the search for happiness and the mysteries of sexuality through the eyes of two brazen teenagers. In a run-down movie theater in central Massachusetts, three underpaid employees mop the floors and attend to one of the last 35 millimeter film projectors in the state. With keen insight and a finely-tuned comic eye, the Flick is a hilarious and heart-rending cry for authenticity in a fast-changing world.

As Eggs dreams of asking Boots to the upcoming Favorites Dance, Boots loses herself in a world of fallen leaves, consumed by her quest to remember the last words Peter said to her before he died. The Swing of the Sea is a play about growing old without aging that examines the way fantasy and memory converge when we lose someone we love. Since the death of his boyfriend, morbidly obese pound Charlie has confined himself to his small Idaho apartment and is eating himself to oblivion. With his health quickly failing, Charlie becomes desperate to reconnect with ellie, his estranged and angry teenage daughter whom he has not seen in 17 years.

He would give her anything: his love, his money. Written by Obie award-winning playwright Samuel D. Hunter, the Whale is a tough, humorous and emotionally powerful play about how we cope with loss, and how new definitions of family, friends and religion shape our lives. A wanderer believes his destiny is written on rooftops along the North Carolina Interstate. A young man yearns to connect with intelligent life in Roswell, New Mexico.

A woman at the Alamo steps out of the shadow of her grandparents' idealized romance to take a chance on love. Three estranged sisters cruise to Glacier Bay to scatter their father's ashes. Two high school boys face unexpected fears in the Coney Island Spook House. A terrified bride-to-be ponders taking the leap. With a score that incorporates pop, rock, folk and more, each story builds on the last to create a vivid travelogue of Americans learning to overcome their fears and expectations in order to connect.

Mogadishu, Paul is a Canadian photojournalist who is about to take a picture that will win him the Pulitzer Prize. Princeton, the present day, Dan is an American writer who is struggling to finish his play about ghosts. Both men live worlds apart but a chance encounter over the airwaves sparks an extraordinary friendship that sees them journey from some of the most dangerous places on earth to the depths of the human soul.

Flying from Kabul to the Canadian High Arctic, The Body of an American sees two actors jump between more than thirty roles in an exhilarating new form of documentary drama. The Musical is the true story of the only person convicted of cannibalism in America - Alferd Packer. The sole survivor of an ill-fated trip to the Colorado Territory, he tells his side of the harrowing tale to news reporter Polly Pry as he awaits his execution. And his story goes like this: While searching for gold and love in the Colorado Territory, he and his companions lost their way and resorted to unthinkable horrors, including toe-tapping songs!

Anthony's father has died and the family come together for the funeral and wake. Anthony's brother Peter turns up. Peter is gay too. When fifteen-year-old Lottie and her ne'er-do-well mother Donna drop in unannounced on the beautiful Sag Harbor home of Donna's brother and his new husband, all hell breaks loose. Angela Drayton, a wealthy widow living in an up-scale retirement community, is tired of handing out money to her unappreciative children. This terrifies her greedy son, driving him to devise a plan to have her committed. Featuring delicious roles for adult and mature actors, this poignant family comedy has played numerous theatre in the US and Canada, and continues spreading the laughs around.

Keen Teens seeks to improve the quality of plays written for high school students by commissioning scripts from highly regarded playwrights, and gives students the opportunity to work with professional artists in an Off Broadway setting. Baker's Plays has been an advocate for theater in schools for over one hundred years.

In the spirit of that commitment, we offer this playwriting competition for High School students. Plays may be about any subject and of any length. It is our hope that this competition will encourage aspiring high school authors to explore the creative possibilities of writing for the stage. Foley - 3rd Place. The play peddles the audience along a cross-country bike trip from Boston to California, with stops in big cities and small towns along the way. Our feckless heroine Penny is looking to bring more meaning into her life, to find a lifestyle that suits her and a town that feels like a home Along the way she befriends a colorful crew of bikers: Ryan, the health nut biking instructor; Tim Billy, the innocent wanderer; Annabel and Rorie, the badass activists seeking to get gay-married in every state they hit on the trip; and the mysterious Man with the Van who carries their stuff.

Featuring a flexible and diverse cast, Bike America is a multi-state, multi-generational odyssey to discover our obsession with happiness. After arriving to the City of Angels, an aimless young man catapults to movie stardom and into Hollywood's sleazy celebrity culture. Banking on his fame and name , he is soon selected to appear on Broadway in Hamlet. Two immigrant Romanian sisters struggle to make ends meet as they attempt to capture a piece of the American Dream.

Kara is the provider. She has been working in a factory sending money home for her younger sister Mia, making it possible for her to come to America to finish up her PhD in biochemistry. Everything is working according to their plan. They have a nice house. Mia is making remarkable progress with her research on ants under the guidance of her professor, Adam Kohn. Kara spends her free time reading Tarot cards. And then the unthinkable happens. Latch your windows! Bolt your door! Beware of The Witch in !

You know your property value has plummeted when a witch moves in next door! When Dani, a precocious nine year old, loses her hair to leukemia, she embarks on a magical journey to get it back. Simultaneously hilarious and heartbreaking, Dani Girl is a tale of life in the face of death, hope in the face of despair, and the indomitable power of the human imagination.

Is laziness the opposite of love? Is the search for the Self for total nobodies? These are questions posed through the prolific pen of Will Eno, one of America's leading contemporary playwrights, whose talents for playful idiosyncratic language shine through in Gnit.

Watch closely as Peter Gnit, a funny-enough but so-so specimen of humanity, makes a lifetime of bad decisions, on the search for his True Self, which is disintegrating while he searches. A rollicking and very cautionary tale about, among other things, how the opposite of love is laziness. Mary Swanson just moved to Middletown. But life in Middletown is complicated: neighbors are near strangers and moments of connection are fleeting.

Middletown is a playful, poignant portrait of a town with two lives, one ordinary and visible, the other epic and mysterious. People have been born into families since people started getting born at all. Playwrights have been trying to write Family Plays for a long time, too. And typically these plays try to answer endlessly complicated questions of blood and duty and inheritance and responsibility.

They try to answer the question, "Can things really change? This has to stop. The Open House is an hour and twenty minutes, with no intermission. Eleven short animal plays which may be done individually or in combination with any of the others. This collection contains a harrowing tale of the later lives of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, two girls obsessed by a movie contemplating homicide, a couple doomed to rehearse their tragedy on the stage of a theatre for eternity, a dark little play about the relationship of leprechauns to cannibalism, the tale of Peter Rabbit told from the point of view of the very disturbed Mr McGregor, a third rate horror movie villain lamenting his life on a zombie island, the end of the observable universe, and more.

Only what the task actually is, is a mystery. There are so many things to fix. One by one the family's secrets are peeled away revealing a shocking truth that surprises even our ghost.

molly beau to belle stories a subdivision of beau to beau books Manual

Happy's junkie brother Timmy is found dead. Now Happy must return to his former life as a clown to ask a few questions. But will Happy be able to go home again without getting sucked into the seedy clown underbelly of vice and violence? In this wild sex farce, Vanessa's marriage to Cooper has grown stale. She wants excitement and passion. He merely wants to provide for her the best way he knows how: fishing.

While Cooper is out at sea, Vanessa receives a visit from a mysterious traveling salesman with a bag full of danger. And he's not the only one new in town: a ravenously horny giant squid and octopus have settled in under the dock, ready for whomever comes their way. From the award-winning playwright of Elephant's Graveyard, George Brant, comes the story of an ace fighter pilot who's career in the sky is ended early due to an unexpected pregnancy. Reassigned to operate military drones from a windowless trailer outside Las Vegas, she hunts terrorists by day and returns to her family each night.

As the pressure to track a high-profile target mounts, the boundaries begin to blur between the desert in which she lives and the one she patrols half a world away. The English Channel examines the murky relationship between great writers and their proclivity to "borrow" ideas and material, tracing Shakespeare's relationship with The Earl of Southampton, the Dark Lady of the Sonnets, and Christopher Marlowe during the turbulent months before Marlowe's death.

The Last Will finds William Shakespeare retired at his country home on Stratford after decades of struggle and success in the city of London. In the last stages of a fatal illness, his deteriorating mind obliterates the distinction between fiction and fact, and the playwright begins acting as a character in his own plays.

Richard Burbage, leader of Shakespeare's acting company, attempts to persuade him to return to London and to playwriting, as Will wrestles with his suspicions, delusions, family resentment, and final testaments. Mortal Terror is set in , the year of the Gunpowder Plot, a terrorist conspiracy to blow up the houses of Parliament. Shakespeare, delicately balancing his allegiances to assure his own survival, is commissioned by King James to write a play to justify his right to the throne.

That play is Macbeth. Eliza Clark brings her unique ability to blend comedy and suspense in her nail-biting play, Edgewise. Work sucks, especially in the middle of a war zone. A rising star in the theatre community, Eliza Clark, brings us her innovative psychological thriller Recall. Lucy makes people uncomfortable. There's something about her eyes. There's something about the way her mother's boyfriends keep disappearing.

And there's something about the government agents on her trail. Radically imaginative and achingly plain, Recall explores our need to feel connected, understood and loved. No matter the damage, no matter the cost. Holly collects dolls. Holly is a born-again Christian. Holly is a fifteen-year-old, brainy, outspoken, spoiled, tyrannical brat. She's also pregnant. In this quasi-comedy about a quasi-adult, a memorable teen is confronted with the speeding train of maturity and a host of life-changing choices without time to consider the consequences.

Without much guidance from her well-meaning, but inept Father or her less-than-bright boyfriend, can Holly's real friends-her dolls-help her make the treacherous transition from child to adult or will the job require the touch of a special Homo sapien? Solomon Eisner, a former freelance journalist is trying to find a way to repair his broken relationship with his bi-racial son Danny. Set one hundred years ago in Paris, The Radiant centers on the true, tempestuous, and love-torn life of Madame Marie Curie.

Widowed at thirty-nine, with two young children to raise and support, she becomes involved in a scandalous affair with her young married assistant, an affair which rocks Paris and nearly costs her her career - and her life. Two couples confront each other in a back-alley bar in Tijuana. In the verbal crossfire that ensues, word play from the Mexicans connotes the distancing created by cultural and language differences. When certain barriers are crossed, whether it's physical boundaries between countries, or in personal or sexual relationships, the situation grows dangerous.

At the close of the excerpt, the American woman goes off with the Mexican man. Arje Shaw blends history and family politics in his Broadway dramedy, set in The Gathering explores the conflicts between grandfather, father, and son which arise over the dinner table when they discuss President Ronald Reagan's planned visit to Bitberg, site of burial grounds for Nazi soldiers.

The stakes are high in the discussion because the grandfather Hal Linden is a Holocaust survivor and his son is a speechwriter for Reagan. Caught between them is the young lad, who is preparing for his bar mitvah. With a multi-generational cast, The Gathering asks poignant questions about understanding and forgivness in the face of tragedy.

Pity poor Streptococcus - it should be a piece of cake for a fairy godmother to tell the story of Snow White but her wand is bent and things aren't going quite as they should. Then, to make things worse, she's interrupted by a couple of English policemen who are hot on the trail of two very devious and dangerous criminals - children who are causing no end of trouble in the forest. Their names? Hansel and Gretel! Streptococcus doesn't believe a word of it and neither do a well-behaved pair of kiddies in the audience who volunteer to help her tell Hansel and Gretel's familiar tale.

But before everyone lives happily ever after, the police insist on having their say and the well-behaved kiddies aren't happy about that at all. Since there are lots of parts 10 for girls, 5 for boys, and 10 for either , everyone gets a role and since a single forest set is all that's needed for this 60 minute show, it's easy to produce. This is a great fun twist on the familiar, favorite tale. Race and privilege intersect in this thought-provoking and lively modern family comedy.

One lazy summer weekend, Kent LeVay invites his fiancee, Taylor, to meet his parents at their luxurious Martha's Vineyard summer home. Taylor, under the microscope and unaccustomed to the surrounding wealth, challenges the household dynamic. Conflict and dysfunction ensue as the household vigorously airs their long-secret dirty linens along with the drapes.

A young professor loses just about everything in the world - everything, that is, except for the flea who lives in his vest. Starting over again, the professor and the flea become the best of friends, start a circus act, and set off to tour the world. Together they must overcome shipwrecks, cannibals, and tickling. Adapted by Jordan Harrison and Richard Gray from the last tale by master storyteller Hans Christian Andersen, this new musical odyssey celebrates friendship, whimsy, and the excitement of the unknown.

In the wake of public spending cuts, Arthur wrestles with the methods set out in Montgomery Swank's "28 Ways to Terminate Your Existence and Questions You May Have", the one book he has salvaged from the closure of his beloved library. In the wake of her own death, his wife Esther reconciles the ghosts of the past with a hope for the future.

A play of two worlds. This elemental and affecting two-hander explores love, its loss, and the lives we inherit and impose on others. The play assaults our deepest prejudices about identity, race and language. A period comedy set in 18th century England. He hires a common criminal to fight in his place, only to have the scoundrel make a bloody mess of things.

As duel follows duel with many shots fired, this coward finds his reputation growing beyond his wildest expectations. Thomas Jefferson, a middle school student, can't seem to focus in school. With his widowed mom, a caring teacher, and his first potential girlfriend, Thomas comes up with a very creative solution to deal with his condition.

Somewhere in America, in a typical suburban restaurant on a typical night, Sam and Nicole first meet. Sparks fly. And so begins an expansive tale that traverses five generations of a modern family, from first kiss to final goodbye. A stunning, big-hearted play that spans nearly eighty years in roughly ninety minutes, The Big Meal tells the extraordinary story of an ordinary family. Bernard Shaw was a character as full of contradictions as any he created for the stage-celibate womanizer, irascible optimist, a Socialist with a sense of humor.

On the subject of marriage, however, Shaw was absolute: he would have none of it, ever, in spite of his wild popularity with women in general and his friend Beatrice Webb's matchmaking efforts in particular. When Webb and her husband Sidney invite the wealthy Charlotte for a visit, hoping for financial support for their fledgling school of economics, Shaw and the heiress collide, collude, and clash by turns along a circuitous path to partnership. How does a computer scientist hook up with a molecular biologist?

He blinds her with science, of course. In Completeness, when Elliot builds a computer program to help Molly with her research project, the variables in their evolving relationship shift as rapidly as the terms of their experiment. This deft and imaginative new ROM-comedy shows that even the most sophisticated algorithm may freeze in the face of life's infinite possibilities.

Inspired by the Dog Catcher Riots. In part one, a put'upon family is run from their home by a settlement of people. In part two, a settlement of people get a surprise guest while simply trying to run a put'upon family from their home. So please sit back, relax, refrain from loud talking and rough-housing, turn off your headlights, enjoy some tasty popcorn, put litter in its place, keep an eye on your children, think about how happy we could be, and remember that this country is full of dark, dark places along dark, dark roadways where dark, dark things can happen.

Like an evening at the drive-in, Cape Disappointment starts with a 'cartoon' and proceeds to the feature: a road-trip epic populated by characters racing across the crumbling landscapes of bygone hey-days. When those goof-off grasshoppers arrive in Ancient Greece, the ants discover all the forbidden fun they've been missing, but when Winter arrives, the Queen leaves those good-for-nothing grasshoppers out in the cold and the ants become bored beyond belief and unable to accomplish their precious work!!!

Now it's up to Eddie, the Queen's son, to lead a search party to rescue the grasshoppers and save the colony from dying With memorable characters, side-splitting silliness and toe-tapping tunes, this Greek musical comedy is the perfect show for any season! Inspired by true events, and infused with a "fresh roots-rock vibe," this is the hilarious, hard-fought contest where only one winner can drive away with the American dream. In modern-day Beijing, a young American guy falls for a Chinese girl and then struggles to understand where she's coming from.

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A play about loneliness, culture-shock, language, and trying to make connections across borders. Out of the desolate nowhere arrives Miz Arnette to rent the room that had been advertised and leased four months ago. With the family farm at stake and desperate for the additional income, young Floy Kate strikes a deal and takes in the intriguing stranger that would forever change her life. Alfred is happy about his life. He's happy with his job. He's happy with his marriage. He's happy raising his special needs daughter.

But when his best friend invites him to dinner to meet the latest woman in his life, things spin out of control. Those looking for refuge at the asphalt oasis include: a stressed-out artistic director grappling for funding, a wanna-be diva who's realizing her ingenue expiration date has just about passed, a board member's nephew vying to direct the musicals with a Tarrentino spin and the "I'm no chorus boy" chorus boy who thinks every show should have a kick line - including Glass Menagerie.

These are just some of the egos and obstacles that fall into the lap of Mike, a nice-guy director who ends up with far more than he bargained for. Anyone who's ever seen a show may know these people. Anyone who's ever done a show may be these people. Birds of a Feather recounts the story of Roy and Silo, the two Central Park Zoo chinstrap penguins who partnered, adopted an egg, hatched and raised a chick together.

Roy and Silo are no strangers to the spotlight. Two strangers await the last bus out of town, as small talk turns into a deadly game of cat and mouse and both seek advantage, trapped in their own secrets and lies, to be the last one standing. As the bus barrels toward the station, Bailey and Rhonda, torn by passion and greed, must confront each other, and themselves, as fate closes in.

A comic tribute to the detective films of Humphrey Bogart. No knowledge of the previous plays is required, as each play can stand alone. In Noir Point Blank, "Just Plain" Rick has hired a singer and opened a photo display of " yrs of shady business" at the cafe to increase business. To this comes an American detective looking for a murderess but stumbling across a gangster on the lam, a beautiful French historian and a British lawyer with a desire to go night diving.

When the murderess ends up dead and the cop is implicated in the murder, it's "Just Plain" Rick who must help him out of the jam by helping him find the real killer. Meanwhile, the gangster has assumed the mortgage for the Cafe Noir and plans on setting up his operations there, and everyone seems to be after something that sunk off the coast of Mustique in It's a true forties style American mystery with the perfect mix of action, intrigue, humor, and romance. The Amish Project is a fictional exploration of the Nickel Mines schoolhouse shooting in an Amish community and the path of forgiveness and compassion forged in its wake.

Originally a solo show, The Amish Project has now been adapted for an ensemble. Sword Against the Sea is an adaptation of William Butler Yeats' six one-act plays and some of his most stirring poems about the Celtic hero Cuchulain. Arranged in the chronological order of Cuchulain's life and drawing exclusively on Yeats' own magnificent poetry, this two-act play presents the hero's failed attempt as a young man to achieve eternal life at the Hawk's Well; his tragic slaying of his own son and the realization that drives him in despair to fight the sea; his wife emer's noble sacrifice to save his life by renouncing her love; and Cuchulain's death and spiritual transcendence as an aged warrior.

Like the original Yeats' Cuchulain plays themselves, this adaptation calls for collaborations among different kinds of artists in the creation of masks, the use of dance and the possibility of including instrumental and sung music. However, they can also be performed by a larger cast. Diana has it all. Beautiful, intelligent, sweet natured. How can she decide? What matters most - familiarity, suitability, sexual passion? But wait! A mouse is stirring - because Santa missed his house last year. Before you can say "Merry Christmas! Don't miss this joyful tribute to the holiday season!

Longing and confusion. Hearts pounding, time ticking away. Early s in a Midwestern town. But the bigger world is stirring once he meets Karen, back from college in the east and alluring because of what she knows, and unsettling for that same reason. The grip of Danny's past is intensified by his father, a German immigrant mourning a vanished world of lost prestige. For Pop the question is how to let go of a son and life he never quite had now that the future has shrunk to almost nothing.

While Danny hopes to change without betraying the bonds that have sustained him, Karen, a whirl of brilliance, looks to J. Salinger for answers and to Danny for a simplicity he does not possess. To fall in love, to have a destiny, to know what it is. The way it always does. He might have made it Above if not for the sparks always jumping out of things to kiss at his knuckles. Me, the only thing good 'bout my Curse is that I can still Pass. And that's half enough to keep me out of trouble.

Some contemporary novels deal with diversity themes with respect to disability, other novels address gender and sexual orientation, while still others include a focus on cultural differences. It is rare to find combinations of any of these themes, and for this reason Above is a striking reminder that difference comes in multiples. It's a gritty book, intended for mature teens, reminiscent of other books for this age group that push the envelope including M.

Back to Index. Saskatoon author Dianne Young has a new picture book sure to please vocabulary afficionados young and old. I was on my way home from the factory when my little red spaceship started making another strange noise! The noise was a bit louder than the last one—I could hear it with just three of my ears…. A treat for the imagination, packed with giggles, and a work-out for building contextual reading strategies, this book is highly recommended for ages 4 and up.

Master of Ceremonies

Although family and friends attempt to divert him from his goal of becoming the Easter Bunny, thanks to an internet-savvy grandma, a costumed Liam has the confidence to believe in his transformation. A subtle message about respect for diversity and personal goals underpins this lovely read, cheerfully illustrated by Jeremy Grumpy Bird Tankard. Highly recommended for ages 3 — 7. Striking photographs by Kathleen Finlay accompany the story in restricted colour choices—a visual treat and one that makes this book interesting to older readers as well as ages 7 — 9 for whom the storyline will appeal.

Zany illustrations by Brooke Kerrigan bring humour into a senstive and heartwarming tale for ages 5 - 8. Some days, the child hears a distant echo. She thinks of rice paddies, of lotus flowers in the wind, or a little house with a pointed roof. Sometimes, just before she sleeps, she whispers to the moon that she is happy.

Just like the roots in a garden weave together to become one plant, the mother, father, and little girl are bound to one another. Their love joins them and reaches to the other side of the earth…And they thank a distant echo that travels on the night breeze for allowing them to become a family. Much of what is published these days in popular series fiction for teens seems well trenched in the general listening and speaking vocabularies of readers without including anything new or provocative.

What makes Random unique is that it has at its helm a smart protagonist who takes charge of a discovery of universal interest to us all—the meaning of life. This is an edgy read, with language authentic to the age group represented and the direct first-person voice of Joe continually posing questions and reeling us back to the issues at hand.

This means you get in a screwed-up situation and you have two choices for finding a way out. Neither one is good but you do have to choose one. Whichever one you pick, somebody or something pays. I think a lot of life is like that. You have to choose. You have no choice. The journey Joe initiates, exorcising his own feelings of responsibility regarding the untimely death of his biological parents, is not a new plotline in fiction for young people. What is refreshing about this read is just how Joe accomplishes his destination. Wright-McLeod Dakota-Anishinabe is a journalist with specialities in music and graphic design.

As with other graphic novels, at first glance the illustrations may mask the adult nature of this text. The black-and-white sketches are fiercely evocative and extend a strong story whose conversational tone is both intriguing and engaging. To bury a memory, one has to dig deep into the heart of the Earth. Things changed very quickly in a place where not long ago, herds of moose and deer were so large that it took a day for them to travel past a given point. Birds were so plentiful that their passing overhead blocked out the sun for hours.

Trees were so bountiful that a squirrel could travel from the coast to the great inland waters without ever touching the ground. And the people in this new time are taught that all bad things happened in the past. People in this new time are taught that the indigenous people should be thankful for all that has been given to them. While aimed at young adult audiences, this graphic novel will find a crossover home with adult audiences interested in a quick but gripping read on this subject.

We meet Mark, reeling from the death of his father, and Stacey, using her relationship with Mark to establish her own popularity. Mary, a budding concert pianist, and Annabelle, an activist for social justice alongside adoring Christopher, complete the list of key characters. This book is deceptively simple, an easy read with depths to plumb, invoking characters whose stories weave in and out with complex precision.

If I have to go to the library, I take the second floor as far as it will go, then climb the stairs and double back, just to avoid the third floor lounge. Yellow Mini succinctly draws to the fore particular and resonant stories of adolescence to which many teens will easily relate. Seventeen-year-old Amy Finch a. Bird is dissatisfied in her long term relationship with Griffin, the boy next door. When I was eight years old, I climbed up a tree and told my mum I was a bird. This allows deep engagement with the text and will hook even reluctant readers in turning the pages to verify their predictions.

London born Kuipers, while setting much of her work in England, manages to transcend time and place in a story without geographical reading boundaries. Interested in writing? While Kuipers was born in London and now writes in Canada, author Trilby Kent has moved the other way from a birthplace in Toronto to her current residence in London.

Yet while the historical details in the book are authentic, it is the difficult relationship between Corlie and her mother that make this book so riveting. My mother never called me anything but Corlie. If she used my fill name, Coraline Roux, I knew that it was time to make myself scarce by hiding in the cattle sheds. The impact sent juice splashing across the slate tiles and a million shards of glass cartwheeling about the floor.

Her strength and knowledge of the land can help her, but is she strong enough to survive starvation, disease, and loss? This is the question that drives the latter half of the book. Compelling reading for ages 11 and up. Fourteen-year-old Sage is purchased from an orphanage by a mysterious stranger. Master Conner, a nobleman of the court, will first train and then choose one of them to masquerade as the missing prince now heir to the throne—with the opportunity for Conner himself to rule from the sidelines.

They need to get to know Emily now. She has to be there now, so she can grow up with those children and those children can grow up with her. This is a book that explores Canadian history related to the school inclusion of children with special needs, and covers a great deal of territory with a sensitive and sure hand. Recommended for educators as well as children ages 8 — This suburb of Iqaluit offers an evocative backdrop for a story of family break-up from the perspective of ten-year-old Joy. Joy and her brother and sister beg their father for a release from after-supper dishes in order to play outside.

Reluctantly, he gives in, and out they fly. Brilliant yellows, reds, and browns, like fall trees and leaves in the south, cover all of the land. Creeping on the ground are mosses, lichens, and low bushes. Everything is earthy-coloured, except for the bay, which is a mirror image of the glowing pink and purple sky. Their old basement carpet smells like mold and mothballs, but the tundra smells like rich, dark soil and sweet moss.

Winter will soon replace that smell with sharp, frozen air that stings my nose. Everyone can feel the tension in the air as all of us are trying to squeeze in as much fun out of the last few days of summer vacation Folger is careful at letting the story go first, working in sensory reminiscences from her own childhood in Iqaluit without creating a setting that outweighs plot or character. For a first-time writer, this is a true gift, and readers can look forward to hearing more from this twenty-eight-year-old University of Toronto student. My work is intended to be multisensory.

The paintings are tactile and many times the paint is applied with my own fingers in order to help me connect on a deeper physical level. I often use other tools that help add dimension and depth I play with light, colour value, texture, and movement. This is accomplished by colour choice and beadwork, composition to create movement.

The teaching of cultural knowledge offers a rich backdrop to a story about relationships. One thing leads to another and soon Nolin is participating in the jigging competition, making his family proud. A brief historical endnote offers for interested readers more facts about the Northwest Resistance. With Michif-Cree translation by Norman Fleury, and vivid illustrations by Sherry Farrell Racette, this book is even richer for the CD of traditional fiddle music that is included along with readings of the text. A follow-up to his Caldecott Award-winning title The Invention of Hugo Cabret, this new historical-fiction read offers two concurrent stories set fifty years apart—one narrated in words and the other depicted through pictures.

Ben and Rose each set out on a journey inspired by different pasts. After the death of his mother, Ben—recently deafened by lightning— seeks the father he has never known. Rose—also deaf— dreams of a mysterious actress with whose life she is obsessed, although readers soon see a surprising connection between Rose and Lillian Mayhew. Highly recommended for ages 9 and up.

The Batman Files by Matthew K. Billed as revealing the entire history and evolution of Batman, from the early days of his life comic-style baby pictures and all to newspaper clippings depicting his exploits and triumphs, this will certainly find favour with connoisseurs of the cartoon. Recommended for Batman aficionados ages 12 and up. I take off after the Flaming Eyeball I fly west. I fly east.

The Legends and Traditions of a Northern County

I fly eight times around the earth and all the way to the heart of the sun Then I see him! I throw an Awesome Power Grip Then I make a quick getaway Amidst his busy schedule, Awesome Man has a secret identity His mom, a little sister, and a plate of plain old cheddar cheese and crackers. What makes this title different within the comics genre is the age of its intended audience as well as a moral message about safe fantasy play. Recommended for ages 4 to 8. Rich vocabulary, clever illustrations that enrich plot and character, and trademark tongue-in-cheek humour make this a highly recommended title for ages 7 to The collection is rather uneven, with other styles of tales in the mix, and the absence of detailed source notes is a weakness, especially as the author and illustrator are not from inside the culture.

The Inuit-owned publishing company in Nunavut www. Recommended for ages 7 to With simple, playful text and evocative illustrations that encourage visual literacy, this highly recommended title is aimed at emergent readers ages 4 — 7. Virginia Frances Schwartz no relation to Roslyn! Virginia came from a family who rescued animals, and really did have a squirrel in the house Highly recommended for ages 8 to A clever narrative following a day in the life of Spike and Rupert, two young porcupines, embeds facts about porcupine habits into a text absolutely prickling with child-friendly illustrations and humorous dialogue.

Highly recommended for ages 4 to 7. Prolific Miss Pomeroy and Walter the rat have never met but they discover one another through a series of letters. Mice detectives and mice spies. Mice villains and mice heroes. Elderly mice, who were always in some kind of danger. Rich female mice, kidnapped and held for ransom. He felt betrayed—for why had Miss Pomeroy chosen to write about mice when she could just as easily have chosen rats?

How could she not have known that rats are more interesting than mice, more intelligent, and more adaptable? To put it bluntly, how could she not have known that rats are more magnificent? Delightful as the narrative is, the heart of this book beats within the letters exchanged between Walter and Miss Pomeroy, epistles through which readers will see clearly see a poignant and developing friendship. Dear Miss Pomeroy, Thank you for writing me.

Your letter was short, but I loved it. My name, as I said before, is Walter, and my Latin name is Rattus norvegicus. I have lived here for six months and have no friends. No relatives, either. I always return them to their places. Sincerely, Walter named after Sir Walter Scott. Dear Walter: I am not exactly a fool. I saw you the very day you moved in, six months ago. I know where your nest is, and I know you steal food from my kitchen. My Latin name is Homo sapiens, and I am well aware that you are reading my books. You presume a great deal!

On the other hand, you are not unwelcome here. Amanda Pomeroy. For ages 7 — 9. From unsinkable schools to online schools and street schools, each learning landscape in this book invites comparison. Many first-person descriptions by students are included, increasing the resonance of this project. Rich with photographs and designed to be reader-friendly with short sections of text and colourful sidebars, this title is highly recommended for ages 9 — Frankenstein—is challenging as a gothic prelude to the classic novel and one that many readers will find intriguing.

Victor Frankenstein, his twin brother Konrad, and their beautiful cousin Elizabeth take their lessons at home from Father, filling their spare time with fencing and horseback riding. Parallels with the original classic text include a metaphor of science as a monster, and a theory about the importance of schooling and the negative result of self-education through books.

Konrad sat up straighter. I looked from Henry to Elizabeth, then to mother. I offered them willingly. But he turned scoundrel and meant to take the elixir for himself. I can see why you dumped her. Next time go for someone at least a little cool. Raving dyke. She clenched her fist but resisted the urge to plow Wes.

Wes sneered. Admit it. The desire to be invited into a cool band inspires Sid to dress the part—in addition to a hope that new clothes will emphasize her straight sexual orientation. Events catapult towards a sexual assault, and a video that goes viral, offering a conclusion somewhat didactic in the manner that various threads are pulled together, yet satisfying nonetheless.

Highly charged storytelling supports the tale of a man caught since the age of ten in a bargain his family made with the devil. This Sally Anne dormitory stinks, but Rembrandt is used to the reek of unwashed bodies. In homeless shelters across Canada and the U. For eighty long years, Rembrandt has been on the move.

But he is not like the others in this cot-filled hall. Nevertheless, he moves on every twelve days. Sometimes sooner if a place offers too much of its own trouble. But he never stays longer than the twelve. It is part of a bargain that has ruled and ruined his family for four score years, a covenant forged from family pride and maternal desire.

As unforgiving as an iron rod laid upon his shoulders, a burden at first shared with his pa and Uncle Thompson, but now carried onward by him alone. The story of our hero intertwines with the poignant sketch of a young teacher who, in keeping her students late, put them at the mercy of a gunman. Gail has spent most of her days since then on the streets—unable to forgive herself at the knowledge that four children were shot, one fatally.

How she transforms into someone Rembrandt has been looking for offers an unpredictable and glittering ending to a tale well told. A unique aspect of this book is that it stretches the boundaries of typical character development for its intended audience, presenting entirely adult portrayals except for a few memorable scenes where Rembrandt, at sixteen, falls in love but cannot stay in one place long enough to marry his sweetheart. For this reason, in addition to appealing to young adult readers, the text may also find favour with adults looking for short chapters and a compelling storyline.

Although Max recognizes the other kids for the zombies they have become, he is powerless to change his impending fate until the conceptualization of a dangerous escape to Canada. This edgy saga offers distant parallels to underground railways in other periods of history, and homophobic dialogue alongside intolerance for intellectual disabilities paint a picture of a narrow community rife with prejudice. Some intriguing themes here, including a warning about the use of medication for behaviour control, and a tribute to the power of art.

For mature readers. Ugly, she was ugly, thought Shir. No question about it. Glumly she stared at her reflection in the bathroom mirror. Born ugly in a way that was never going to change. No Cinderella slipper here, no Sleeping Beauty to wake with a kiss, even for a toonie. No, hers was the kind of face that fairy tales reserved for dwarfs and goblins, a face without a single redeeming feature.

Even the eyes were ugly—small, squinty, and of a queer, pale blue that never seemed to hold any expression. It was almost as if they were made of glass. The worst of her appearance was obviously her nose. They were huge, cavernous. In grade five, it had been the favourite lunch hour pastime to stick various objects inside them. Sometimes Shir had been the one to stick in something; sometimes a group of boys had held her down and done it.

Stones, shoelaces, dill pickles—the inspiration had been endless. One boy had even brought pet guppies to school and inserted them live. They had died in her nose. Occasionally Shir still woke in the middle of the night, sweat pouring off her as she relived the sensation of those desperately wriggling guppies They were still there, those guppy souls, swimming the inside of her head. Never let yourself get so small, they can do to you what they did to us. Hope resounds, even in the darkest moments, through a character whose innocence is at times as unsettling as her horrific life experiences.

For mature teens. A great idea. A funny childhood memory. A crazy dream they know would make a fantastic novel. We carry it around like a dirty little secret. Or at least bought another new journal. And some more pens. The good ones. We feel its watchful all-seeing eye burning up every line. Our worst one. Known for his literary acumen, and a trusted mentor and friend to writers worldwide, there could be no better choice than Carver to write such a book. Challenges on the business side of things are addressed directly and helpfully, and it is clear that Carver respects and celebrates the work that goes into literary products for young people.

In addition to direct support for artistic processes, Carver also addresses popular fears about the effect of technology on reading. No matter the format, there will always be room for creators of wonderful stories to engage young readers, and for the visual artists who can enhance these stories by making them jump off the page—or the screen.

Instead of allowing the adventure story to unfold, letting readers anticipate and predict, the narrative is heavy, pushing forward a didactic tale about a princess who, contrary to traditional gender roles, manages to save a prince. Traditional gender roles? Female protagonists have been saving male characters, and vice versa, for years, with gender stereotypes mainly residing in classic fairytales. For ages 4 — 8. Another unconventional fairytale is Kiss Me! With well-developed characters who grow and change, and punchy dialogue, this story unpacks stereotypical roles for royalty while remembering its real business—to delight and entertain.

Ella is a girl with pockets just the right size for ferrying a frog. Instead of a purse she carries other things—a basketball, mostly—and in the end, her sporty lifestyle helps her royal froggy friend see the advantages in becoming a prince. I can even join your baseball team! So yes, Ella, I want you to kiss me. While books are one way of contesting tradition, they are also culprits in propagating stereotypes. And why would we want it to?

This title is not recommended for anyone. Runaway horses, missing hair, cow dung, lost sisters, outhouses, and even aeroplanes, offer page-turning power. Tightly crafted chapters that read like stand-alone short stories make this book an excellent choice for reluctant as well as avid readers ages 8 to The title reflects the struggles of expatriate Irish through the story of teenager Kit Byrne as she journeys away from the Irish famine of the mid 19th century. Her travels take her across the Atlantic, through the Grosse Isle quarantine station, and on to Upper Canada, where she struggles to put her family back together.

Two characters with heavy burdens leave their contemporary lives to travel into different places and times where lessons learned offer inspiration and courage. In Winter Shadows , a teenage girl uses an antique brooch to time slip five generations, connecting with a previous resident of her old house on the Red River. Through eavesdropping and sampling bits from a diary, Cass comes to know Beatrice as a young woman who shares many of the same struggles. Cass offers sound advice, and, through helping Beatrice, Cass finally finds a way to deal with the death of her beloved mother and move forward.

The setting is as sharp and authentic as the contemporary context. Picturing Alyssa is a novel covering similar territory. A young girl victimized by bullying, her family bereft at the loss of a baby, finds a way to travel into the Quaker home of her great grandmother where the girls become fast friends.

Using a photograph as a portal into the world of , Alyssa at first yearns to stay with Deborah, but our young time traveller soon finds out that life anywhere has its ups and downs. In the end, Alyssa returns home to deal directly with her challenges. Alyssa took a closer look at the photograph. This one showed a family outside a house—a dad, a mom, a big brother and sister. Four little kids sat on a bench. One of the boys looked mischievous. Alyssa reached for the magnifying glass.

Deborah Clayton came sharply into focus. The shape of her face was completely familiar.

Penn, poet/playwright/performer

The girl seemed to be smiling Everything blurred. Darkness swooshed around her. With a hard bump, she fell backwards. In the hands of experienced writers Buffie and Lohans, the shifts between past and present are easily navigated by readers. The brooch in Winter Shadows and the photograph in Picturing Alyssa both operate smoothly to convey characters through time and space. At first stricken with confusion, and then with growing understanding and control, these two protagonists are strikingly convincing within the suspension of disbelief conjured by good fantasy.

Both books are highly recommended for ages 11 and up. A young boy enters a translation of the Arabian Nights on behalf of his father who, two decades earlier, entered the book with a young friend and agonizingly left her there. Now it is up to ten-year-old Yeats to rectify an accident that has haunted his dad all these years. Will Yeats find Shara, who now thinks herself Shaharazad?

And if he finds her, can he convince her to come back home? Underpinning the lively action is a folktale about a girl both courageous and beautiful, the lovely Shaharazad. At the heart of her story is a king, once betrayed by a woman, who marries a new girl each night but kills her before morning. Shaharazad manages to save herself by telling the king a series of stories, for a thousand and one nights, ridding him of nightmares and building his trust until he at last accepts her as a permanent wife.

Yeats must save Shara before she enters into this arrangement, adding a time factor to their ordeal that pushes the plot even more quickly forward. The Arabian Nights is a collection of ancient tales from India, Persia, and North Africa, and the stories became available in English in the early s. Authentic dialogue and settings that capture the essence of Victorian England, yet invoke present sensibilities, raise this title to exceptional heights, with a storyline both poignant and gripping. One of the voices in this title belongs to Mary, a young woman whose unwitting choices cause a pregnancy that threatens her survival in a time and place where unwed mothers find little support.

But none of that is useful when it comes to being a servant, is it? And nothing to ready me, either, for the other surprises a girl might stumble over. A part of me that were me, the true Mary Finn, when I were walking out with him. Highly recommended for ages 13 and up. Translated from the original French by Helen Mixter, this graphic novel illuminates poignant themes of death and grief through the first-person narrative of a young boy, Harvey, whose father dies of a heart attack and who becomes invisible in the adult world of confusion and customs. But this time of first spring is also the time for the races in the gutters.

So there are lots of things to tell. Gritty without being gratuitous, the first-person narrative is a compelling read for ages 12 and up. When Noni finally finds her voice, the consequences are surprising, reminding readers to be true to themselves. They are just the kind of friends that pester and perturb each other The next morning, the bird feels glum.

He has nowhere to sit, and no one to pick and peck. What can he do to renew their relationship? The deliciously comic characterizations are presented for ages 4 - 8 through bright acrylics, while particular words are included in oversized bold font to create further humour. Beginning with a pre-wedding scene where the new princess is stuck in her chilly palace room, unable to build her own fire because of stupid rules of etiquette she has been admonished previously about stooping to menial tasks , the book races forward.

An occasional flashback nods to the well-known fairy tale while also contradicting some of the original. About halfway through the book, Ella or Princess Cynthiana Eleanora, as she has been ostentatiously renamed realizes that her feelings for Prince Charming are not love, and that she is now trapped in a situation from which extrication is going to be incredibly complicated. That is the real story here, and one worth telling, although murmured allusions to King Henry VIII may limit this as a story less universal than it really is.

In addition, the ending merits critical discussion, as readers will find themselves resting back on stereotypes related to physical beauty. A title whose colloquial style may capture reluctant readers, it is highly recommended for ages 12 to Fifteen-year-old Ellie Gold, daughter of Orthadox Jews, must somehow reconcile her faith and her lesbian sexual orientation amidst other questions of career choice, the place of women in society, and her own personal identity. They go to a different school, sit in a different part of the synagogue, look away when we walk by.

A complex and sensitive read for mature teens. Books for young people are stretching real-world boundaries with variations on science fiction and fantasy, and four new titles from deserve a look in this regard. The characterization of Varia is highly authentic in its presentation of a young teen who strives for independence despite the dangers associated with their terrestrial community. The most complex relationship in the book occurs between Varia and a dragon that she secretly hatches from a crystal egg, although an emerging confidant appears in Sidran, a boy whose depiction implies romantic promise.

He had to believe her. It has wings and scales and a pointed tail. It even breathes fire. That smell you smelled? Dragon smoke and rotten plants from its farm of giant bees. The shiny spot on my ear is where it bit me. Once Varia started talking, the words poured out like water through a breached dam. Equally authentic as a character in its own right is Galatea, the dragon that Varia enthusiastically raises until suddenly the lines between friend and foe are blurred.

Their developing physical relationship, when Galatea becomes Galateor and insists they Recommended for teens. With the cameo setting of Wascana Lake—. Matthew J. Guiseppe, stolen from Italy as a young child, is a street musician who seeks to outsmart his ruthless master through the help of an enchanted green violin. Frederick, having escaped a cruel orphanage to work as an apprentice clockmaker, attempts to ensure his livelihood through the creation of a brilliant automaton.

Hannah is a maid in a grand hotel who must find a way to purchase medicine for her critically ill father. The following list is a combination of new titles and ones more tried and true, offering support for library visits as well as great gift ideas. Illustrated by Scot Ritchie, this non-fiction title is an updated version of the original, covering popular topics such as why the sky is blue, why we sleep, and why garbage smells. While the text does include minor errors in editing, the story is gripping and very readable.

Book 1 of a series by a prolific Saskatchewan author. The award winner will be announced in mid November. A local event that gets young people involved in reading is the Saskatchewan Willow Awards where 30 books, divided into three age categories, have been shortlisted by a team of adult readers. Historical fiction set in , the story underpins the need for social support programs to assist people in trouble. For ages 10 and up. Awards lists are good places to search for quality literature, but these lists are not all encompassing.

Two Canadian authors with first novels not yet in the spotlight should find an immediate readership for their marvellous writing styles and authentic, contemporary themes and settings. Highly recommended for ages 11 — Nudged into a corrupt world where adults prey on young girls for sexual favours, Gloria slips but regains her balance in a journey that is both a captivating glimpse of life in Ghana and a universal picture of an adolescent in difficult circumstances trying to make her way. Tolkien, and E. Melling, Kit Pearson, and Cora Taylor. Two relatively new female Canadian fantasy writers for young people are proving themselves rising stars in an industry where male characters have also dominated.

Erin Bow, a Kitchener poet and daughter-in-law to Patricia Bow, has recently produced her first novel—a work that will certainly garner her many accolades. Both titles are suitable for ages 12 and up, and both feature strong female protagonists. She found her animal form. And the dark druid, Far Doirche, fixed his eye upon her. We follow the narrative eagerly, hoping for a happy ending, especially where star crossed lovers Sive and Finn are concerned, but such is not to be.

By the time the Dark Man is ruined, the ageless Sive has spent years in the otherworld of Tir na nOg while Finn has been following his mortal journey. Bennett is particularly deft at handling the descriptions of place that mark a vivid path for readers throughout the many settings involved. Highly recommended. A growing realization that she has supported Linay in a terrible plan of revenge pushes Plain Kate to the edge of disaster A title of high seriousness, it also has its comic moments, many engineered by the cameo comments of Taggle, a talking cat.

He stretched forward, lengthening his back and spreading his toes, then sprang onto the wall beside her. His nose worked. And—ah, another cat! I must go and establish my dominance. Plain Kate lunged after him. The beginning of a new school year is a good time to reflect on personal goals and ways to attain them.

When her application is rejected, the bad news spreads to chicken coops around the world. Consult www. Another noteworthy publisher, specializing in adult literacy resources, is Grass Roots Press. Their new line of Good Reads www. Rose struggles to keep her Hazel safe at night, traveling on uncertain streets. She had to walk in front of Hazel, to protect her from anything that was ahead, but she also wanted to walk behind. What if something—someone—snatched at her daughter as they walked by? Hazel, tired of missing school and sleeping rough, concocts a story explaining how she herself killed her dad.

You and Daddy came in. He was yelling and hitting you. I picked up the knife to get him to stop, and I accidentally killed him. Then I got scared and ran out of the house. You came after me to protect me. Or would it be better to flee herself, and leave Hazel to be looked after by foster care? Or instead of running Real issues in a well written text respectful of adults who look to further their reading skills. Brenna is a Saskatoon author of seven books for young people. Two new titles for ages twelve and up earn star ratings for Saskatoon authors Alice Kuipers and Art Slade, and both deal with complex and evocative characters, albeit very differently.

As Sophie allows herself to remember the ordeal and put it to rest, she discovers and explores a range of poetic forms, an aspect of the novel that increases its richness for young readers who may share related passions. We cheer as Sophie comes to terms with the panic attacks that are preventing her from living life the way she wishes, and find ourselves completely invested in following her day-to-day, including a navigation of alcohol, drugs, and sexuality.

Rather than looking back with nostalgia at adolescence, this title is wholeheartedly there. Its title, reflective of a third person stance not present in the novel, does not do justice to the strong first person voice within. Just as Sophie is a fan of Stephen King and E. Slade portrays Victorian England while simultaneously supporting prominent fantasy elements such as shape-shifting alongside real technological developments like the telegraph.

This choice offers a kind of cushion for young readers when it comes to language and sexuality, avoiding potential censorship issues because lines are neither approached nor crossed regarding mature content although romance is a clear element of the storyline. He is paired with Octavia, another secret agent, although for much of the book his true partner is Colette, a French spy who pushes him to show his true exterior, then finds she cannot tolerate his hunchback appearance. In Icaria citizenship means equality for all.

The old, the weak, the crippled. There are no poor and no rich in our country.

Chapter two

Brenna is a Saskatoon author of six books for young people. Graphic novels are a relatively new textual form gaining favour with many young readers. Because many struggling or reluctant readers have found graphic novels enjoyable, the form has had some trouble rising above a narrow view of its intended readership. New titles have helped graphic novels reach prominence as an appropriate medium for all interest-levels and abilities of readers. The combination of print and illustration in comic-like style offers a number of different possibilities regarding story representation.

Some graphic novels represent classic stories such as Black Beauty and Hamlet. Other graphic novels work with Canadian history from original perspectives, reviewing and re-storying non-fiction characters. In addition to the variety of retellings available, many graphic novels are composed entirely as new fiction. The following titles are accessible and relevant as well as engaging for young readers ages eight to eleven.

Composed by Canadian authors and illustrators, readers will be able to bring local context to their comprehension of these stories. Just another benefit of living in the digital age. Torres and J. The spare language carries the story at a rapid pace, but leaves room for word plays which add a whimsical quality to the text. The illustrations at times move the storyline forward without words, a sensation that links graphic novels to films in terms of their effect.

These two books are rather glib in their portrayal of stereotypical villains and heroes, but this is perhaps a result of the genre of the books rather than their graphic form. Because some graphic novels deal with mature subject matter, they are not necessarily geared towards junior readers in spite of what a quick look at the pictures may imply. Building bridges between diverse cultures is a theme found in a number of new books for young people, spotlighting the way that stories can support social change.

Duck and Mr. Rabbit, hurrying past each other to and fro work without taking the time to consider their similarities. For ages four to seven. Watts does a remarkable job of capturing historical details—the customs required when meeting various people in a big household, for example—although at times the narration may be a little too stilted for younger readers.

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  5. In Defense of Martin Luther;
  6. Maids all have different duties: the kitchen maid answers to the cook, the scullery maid does the rough work The climax of the story contains scenes on board the Titanic, with Lou and her charges, sailing to New York on a family vacation, joining the few survivors of the marine disaster. While somewhat contrived to add action to a book that feels to be mainly about class distinction, the Titanic episode will certainly draw readers who may not otherwise discover this title. For ages nine and up. Stratton offers authentic characters divided by various lines including race, religion, gender, and sexual preference, in a seamless story of intrigue and coming-of-age.

    What is so compelling about this read is that its lesson—a call to judge individuals on their personal attributes rather than through stereotypes—is merely a byproduct of an excellent, plot driven tale composed by a master storyteller. Mild profanity convincingly used in context elevates the reading age; for mature teens 13 and up. This is a lesson Nadia learns as she sorts through her own heritage, questioning her role as a child in a German home, and weighing her earlier Ukrainian memories against the negative labels cast by her Canadian peers.

    I had met many kind Germans, both in Canada and during the war. I felt sorry for Mutter because she was always sad, but she was not kind to me. And Vater was almost a stranger. A cold, hard stranger. After the war, when I heard about the many evil things that Hitler had done, it made me feel ashamed of who I might be. Highly recommended, for ages ten and up. On a family visit to their home reserve, Justice helps his grandfather with various tasks.

    For ages eight to eleven; this is an authentic story from an author to watch. The bump struck without warning, roaring down toward the entry from deep in the hill. The walls of the tunnel wrenched sideways. Heavy supporting beams splintered like kindling. The floor heaved. A curtain of black dust fell into the room. Then the rock stopped shifting, almost before John Walter had time to tell it had begun. Stumbling, he caught his breath and sucked in a cloud of powdered coal. The place seemed cold and unfriendly. You could tell that the outside had been painted once or twice, but years of prairie wind and sun had stripped it almost bare.

    A book that skilfully weaves contemporary themes of ethnic diversity and hockey culture with the meaning of community; highly recommended for ages eight to twelve. Felines figure felicitously in four new titles for children, and may inspire young cat lovers into reading particular texts just for the connection to a beloved pet. This title is highly recommended for shared reading, where children ages two to six chime in the rhyming words. Another self-published picturebook for older kids five and up includes a great cat cameo within a modern tale of dinosaurs.

    Lesothosaurus, one of the dinosaurs, is particularly small—only one meter long—and his visit to Winnipeg during the summer months progresses quite without incident. A cleverly unfolding psychological drama, it carefully presents one scene after another in rich sensory detail, the characters of Mimi, Jay, and Cramer—siblings who find each other in a sleepy little Canadian town—realistically drawn through narration from alternating third-person perspectives.

    She was glowing with the sweat of lifting the heavy door. Jay stared at her, his mouth hanging open. Then he closed it and swallowed. He wiped his face with both hands, squinting from the rain. It was still coming down hard. He waved his arms urgently, then made his way toward the car. Instinctively, Jay locked the doors. What was going on? Where was Mimi? But now Cramer was at his window, his hands pressed against the glass, framing his face, and his face was filled with earnestness and fear. His mouth was moving. He was saying something.

    Jay turned off the engine. Jay opened the door. Cramer looked exhausted. He shook his head. Sixteen-year-old Porter Delaney has his future planned out, until this stranger appears in his Toronto neighbourhood and starts him on a re-examination of past, present, and future. A realistic page-turner, except for minor sections of didactic prose where contrived characters attempt to teach psychology lessons. Geared for ages 14 and up although explicit references to drug use may influence the readership. Mature reading for ages 14 and up.

    It is , and 15 year old Sig Andersson is tending to the body of his father, Einar, who died after falling through a weak spot on the ice-covered lake near their cabin north of the Arctic Circle. On his way back, he saw the lake, shining in the light from a bright moon. It looked commonplace when life had just become anything but.

    But then, when snow covers everything and the mercury shows dozens of degrees below, any season but winter is an impossible memory to summon. You just have to look for it. A clever and gripping read for tweens, also offering intriguing fare for older reluctant readers. Interestingly, neither Sakai or Sedgwick grew up in cold northern climes, although their descriptions are vividly realistic.

    Sakai lives and works in Japan while Sedgwick makes his home in Cambridge. Described in terms of Radical Change theory by Dr. What moves this title into modern appeal is its telling through Newfoundland dialect as well as forms that alternate between story and song.

    Listed for ages two to five, the complexity of the language and the hints at mystery in the dark patches of background illustration may be more suitable for ages five and up. Both titles are for ages four to seven, although these are appropriate texts through which older children may practice critical literacy by examining the contradiction of stereotypes.

    At times, the scenes depict an older gentleman and a little girl on an apartment balcony; at other times, however, the duo are swept into the meadow of their imaginings. One page offers an art lesson while simultaneously continuing the storyline. This text is written in Inuktitut and English and includes a glossary of sea creatures as well as a pictorial map of Baffin Island.

    The illustrations, graphite and colored pencil on paper, will captivate the four to seven age group for whom the book is intended. Unique perspectives on war appear in titles designed towards supporting young readers in the world in which they live as well as recreating the past. Saying it feels new. The war has lasted so long. He has been gone so long. What begins as a crow hunt, however, emerges from this finely crafted piece as a celebration of life. He carries his gun carefully; and though I am grateful to him for not using it, I feel that there is no need to say thank you—Daddy knows this already.

    The crows will always be there and they will always eat the crops; and some other morning, on some other hill, a hunter, maybe not my daddy, will take aim. He smiles as he gives me a poppy to pin on my jacket. He looks very proud. In addition to including a select photo-history of the Boer War and World War I, this book reminds readers that behind every poem is a poet, and offers a strong message about the power of words.

    For ages eight and up. Carrying a message of hope beyond the boundaries of politics, this is a well-researched title worth consideration by young historians. Through the eyes of the teenage Anneke, Polak presents the fictionalized drama of the prisoners alongside a number of real historical events including the reception of a Danish Red Cross delegation that inspected the camp in June, , when the prisoners were forced to fabricate fake shops and schools to ensure that the secrets of their tortured existence were kept from the world. Difficult subject matter that offers complexity in its assignment of blame, this story, along with the rest of the collection, is suitable for mature readers ages twelve and up.

    Two young adult novels with serious subject matter add important voices to the material available for teen readers from Canadian authors. It is only through the personal tragedy of one of these friends that Maddie eventually begins to admit the truth and open herself to healing. With well developed characters in the mix of family and friends who engage with this young woman, readers have the opportunity to enjoy a strong story while at the same time learning about an illness that may hit close to home.

    How Natalie endures the days after the tragic event creates a page-turner that is heartbreaking yet engaging, reinforcing for readers that some stories do not have happy endings yet life goes on for those left behind. I feel like I have to see her now and not wait till morning. I splash water on my face and put a cold, damp hand on the back of my neck to startle myself.

    I trade boxers for shorts and sneak out of the house, which is so easy I should do it more often. The message in this title is clear: stuff happens, things change, and people do the best they can to cope. Although the ending is too pat, the exceptional dialogue and characterization in this title predict future successes for this new author—definitely someone to watch. Steampunk is a sub-category of fantasy and speculative fiction that emerged a couple of decades ago and denotes a world where steam power is still widely used but with prominent elements of either science fiction or fantasy—in this case an alternative Victorian London.

    The Mystery of the Moonlight Murder: An Early Adventure of John Diefenbaker is the first attempt at literature from Fireside Publishing House—a new group bent on fictionalizing the past lives of all twenty-two Canadian prime ministers. Unfortunately, author Roderick Benns succumbs to hallmarks of ineffectual writing including ponderous pacing, the narrative telling rather than showing, and hackneyed description. When you see him walking down the street, it is easy to forget that he sells about a million books a year and that tens of thousands of kids and parents line up to see the storytelling shows he gives across Canada and the United States.

    Raised in a family where Dad loved to tell bedtime stories, Robert and his eight siblings were, from an early age, exposed to rich oral language. Edwards indicates that Robert was a voracious reader but did not do well at school; were it not for a special school librarian, his gifts might have been overlooked in favour of his shortcomings. Bouts of depression made social life difficult for Robert, and he left highschool determined to become a priest. Eventually, Robert began a doctorate in anthropology until an assault in a rough neighborhood left him with serious brain injuries that affected his ability to study.

    For ages eight and up with particular appeal for adult literacy learners. Your face is dirty. Your feet are dirty. Adam, you need a bath! Down the Drain , for example, is dedicated to Adam and his sister Janna, the real life models for the story and who, like Munsch himself, live in Guelph, Ontario. Following a lengthy research process, Munsch usually spends a great deal of time telling a new story before finally committing the text to paper.

    A year ago, Munsch suffered a stroke that affected his ability to use language. While not yet able to work on fresh material, he has since returned to storytelling, and details of school visits are available on his website: www. Sherman Mack, an unlikely grade-nine hero enamoured with cooking classes and detective stories, confronts hierarchies among scholars, jocks, and Trophy wives to save the girl he loves from being categorized as one of the Defiled.