2019 TD Canadian Children’s Book Week Reading List

The 2019 TD Canadian Children’s Book Week will take place from May 4-th to 11th. During that week we will see 28 authors touring nation wide, sharing a love of stories with Canadian children. Get to know the touring creators, and their books, before the tour officially begins.

Alison Acheson

Alison lives in the East Side of Vancouver, in a little house with a wood stove (which is good for writing on rainy days). She shares the house with her youngest son, who likes to sing—her in-house Sinatra—and she likes to listen to all types of music, and dance, and she plays the saxophone for fun.

Her tenth book—a picture book, titled A Little House in a Big Place—will be released by Kids Can Press in spring 2019. She has published nine books for young people, from picture books to work for teens, and all ages between, fiction as well as a nonfiction piece for Pearson Educational working with mental health for grades 4-6. She has taught in the UBC Creative Writing program off and on since 1998.

The germ for A Little House was borne during her trip to Ontario for…yes, Book Week 2012, when she travelled by train between Toronto and the amazing little town of St. Mary’s, an early evening jaunt with golden setting sun and long shadows. So Book Week has a special place in her heart, representing a time of sharing and regeneration.

Learn more about Alison and her books here!

Ashley Barron

Ashley Barron is a multimedia artist who is best known for her cut-paper collage style work. Her award winning illustrations have appeared in magazines and children’s publications, as well as animations, advertising campaigns, clothing and window displays. Her playful depictions of flora and fauna combine elements of geometry, texture, pattern and a love for colour. To date, she’s illustrated ten children’s books, including the Math in Nature series, Kyle Goes Alone and Birthdays Around the World.

Learn more about Ashley and her books here!

Brooke Kerrigan

Born and raised in Toronto Canada, Brooke currently splits her time between Tiny, Ontario and a little town in the French Alps called Chamonix. Both places inspire her daily with their landscape and beauty. Brooke has loved to draw and get creative ever since she was small. Doodling, scribbling, colouring and crafting until one day she realized she wanted to go away to college to study art. From there, with a lot of practicing and a lot of hard work, she eventually found her way to illustrating picture books. What a lovely twisty road it has been!

In her books so far, Brooke has worked in watercolour, guache, pencil crayon, collage and most recently digital on an iPad pro! She’s inspired by all sorts of things, the mountains, the sea, the clouds, the flowers, and mostly her very overactive imagination. Brooke particularly loves the final moments of a painting when it all comes together, adding the last touches and extra little details……. if you look carefully at her work you might spot a little creature hidden in the background, or a poka dot flower blowing in the wind.

Brooke has illustrated over 10 picture books including design-award winning Fishermen Through & Through, and recent Blue spruce honor book The Little Boy Who Lived Down the Drain.

Learn more about Brooke and her books here!

Emma FitzGerald

Emma FitzGerald was born in Lesotho in Southern Africa to Irish parents, grew up in Vancouver and calls Halifax, Nova Scotia home. She has always loved to dance and draw, and wanted to become a choreographer, writer or architect when she was 10 years old.

After completing a BFA in fine art and a Masters in Architecture, she worked in architecture offices in South Africa, Vancouver, Calgary, and Halifax. She taught architecture in the Gambia, West Africa. Since 2013 she has run her own business as an artist, creating drawings of buildings and people in Halifax, Nova Scotia, selling them as both cards and prints. This led her to create her first book “Hand Drawn Halifax” (Formac Publishing, 2015), which has become a bestselling and well loved ode to the city. As Emma draws on location people approach her and tell her stories, which are woven into the book.

Subsequently Emma explored the South Shore of Nova Scotia in a similar fashion, resulting in “Sketch by Sketch Along Nova Scotia’s South Shore” (Formac Publishing, 2017), and she is currently working on “Hand Drawn Vancouver” (Appetite, 2020), which will share stories of the city she grew up in.

Emma is thrilled to have illustrated Sheree Fitch’s children’s book “EveryBody’s Different on EveryBody Street” first written as a poem for the Nova Scotia Hospital to spark conversation around mental health. In this book she was able to include many people dancing, which made her happy. She believes the message of the book; that we are all different and yet the same is a wonderful one.

Emma shares her passion for drawing through teaching on location sketching workshops. She has done so at the Lunenburg School of the Arts, at Urban Sketching Symposiums in Brazil and the UK, and in Libraries all around Nova Scotia.

Learn more about Emma and her books here!

Helaine Becker

Helaine Becker is the bestselling author of more than 80 books for children and young adults, including the “enduring Canadian Christmas classic” A Porcupine in a Pine Tree and the international bestseller Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13. She’s a multi-time winner of the Silver Birch Award and a two-time winner of the Lane Anderson Award for science writing for children. She has had three nonfiction titles recognized by the Junior Library Guild, a Bank Street Best of the Year and a Sydney Taylor Notable Book under her belt.

Learn more about Helaine and her books here!

Jodi Carmichael

Award-winning author, Jodi Carmichael is a champion for the underdog and kids who think differently. Through her writing, she hopes to not only foster a love of reading in children and teens, but also to build their empathy for others.

Jodi’s dreams of becoming an author began to come true when she attended her first SCBWI conference in Los Angeles in 2007 and was nominated for the Sue Alexander Most Promising New Work Award. Her chapter book, SPAGHETTI IS NOT A FINGER FOOD AND OTHER LIFE LESSONS (2013) won numerous awards including a Gold Mom’s Choice and a Silver Moonbeam in 2013. In 2016 her novel about relationship abuse, FOREVER JULIA (2015) won the Manitoba Book Award; The McNally Robinson Books for Young People Awards – Older Category and received a Bronze Moonbeam Award for Young Adult Fiction – Mature Issues. FAMILY OF SPIES – PARIS (2018) is a fast-paced middle grade historical fiction full of mystery, espionage, and humor and is garnering rave reviews including a Highly Recommended through CM Review.

In 2018, Jodi was honored to be nominated for a Winnipeg Arts Council RBC On The Rise Award for her writing and promotion of literacy to Winnipeg youth. She also visits classrooms, libraries, or entire school assemblies to talk about reading, writing, and editing, hoping to inspire Canadian students to explore their own creativity. When not channeling characters from her books, Jodi can be found strolling Manitoba beaches with her family.

Learn more about Jodi and her books here!

Jacqueline Guest

Jacqueline Guest began writing professionally in Grade 5 when she was paid twenty-five cents by her brother to write his Language Arts essay. She now has twenty novels with topics ranging from missing dinosaur fossils to mysterious meteorites. While doing research for her books she has stood on an iceberg, flown a kite in a hurricane, hitched a ride on an elephant and dodged hungry lions!

In 2017, Jacqueline was awarded the Order of Canada for her work in celebrating Literacy.

Jacqueline and her computer live in a log cabin in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.

Learn more about Jacqueline and her books here!

Kallie George

Kallie George is an author, speaker and instructor of creative writing workshops. She has a master’s degree in children’s literature from the University of British Columbia. She has worked in the publishing industry and been a picture book editor for a number of years. She has written many acclaimed, award-winning books for young readers including the chapter book series, The Heartwood Hotel and The Magical Animal Adoption Agency, and her latest, a middle grade series, Wings of Olympus. Her picture books include, Duck, Duck, Dinosaur, Secrets I Know, The Lost Gift, and The Doll Hospital. Her early readers include the Tiny Tales series, and Anne Arrives, inspired by Anne of Green Gables. When she is not writing or editing, she’s teaching creative writing workshops through Emily Carr University and CWC (Creative Writing for Children). She lives in Vancouver BC, with her husband and her brand-new son.

Learn more about Kallie George and her books here!

Kristin Butcher

Kristin Butcher is a Canadian writer and reviewer of young adult and juvenile fiction. She was born in Winnipeg, but moved to Victoria, BC, at the age of 5. Her first novel, The Runaways, was published in 1997 and went on to be a regional Silver Birch Award winner. Since then she has published 25 other books, including two biographies for primary readers and 10 titles in the successful Soundings and  She has twice toured for the Canadian Children’s Book Week and given book talks at libraries and schools. Butcher is also an artist and illustrator.

Learn more about Kristin and her books here!

Lee Edward Fodi

Lee Edward Födi is an author, illustrator, and specialized arts educator—or, as he likes to think of himself, a daydreaming expert.

He is the author and illustrator of the five-book series, The Chronicles of Kendra Kandlestar, which include The Box of Whispers, The Door to Unger, The Shard from Greeve, The Crack in Kazah, and The Search for Arazeen.

His new series, Zoone, is being published by HarperCollins Children’s Books, starting with The Secret of Zoone in March 2019.

Lee is an engaging public speaker, specializing in presentations and workshops for children of all ages. He has taught programs in Canada, the United States, England, South Korea, and Thailand. He’s worked as a writer/artist-in-residence at numerous schools, including leading art therapy sessions for at-risk teens.

Learn more above Lee and his books here!

Manon Gauthier

Montreal native Manon Gauthier is a self- taught Children’s book illustrator and visual artist who studied graphic design and worked in that field for more than fifteen years.

In 2007, after experiencing the joy of illustrating her first children’s book, she decided to devote herself to books for young people. Since then, Gauthier has illustrated a dozen books for Canadian and European publishers.

She has won several important prizes and nominations for her work, among them, four nominations for the Governor General’s Literary Awards (illustration), Canada’s most prestigious annual literary prize and more recently her illustrations for the book « Mon parc » published at Les éditions de l’Isatis have been selected for the prestigious Illustrator’s exhibition at the Bologna children’s Book fair 2014.

Learn more above Manon and her books here!

Marty Chan

Marty Chan loves to write. Before he became a kids’ author, he worked in theatre, radio, and television. Now his passion is inspiring the next generation of lifelong readers and writers. Using a combination of storytelling, improv, humour, and stage magic, he shares his love of words with audiences young and old. Marty’s first young adult novel, The Mystery of the Frozen Brains, is a hit with young readers across Canada. Another three books in the Marty Chan Mystery Series followed, including The Mystery of the Graffiti Ghoul, which won the 2007 Diamond Willow Award. Marty lives and works in Edmonton with his wife, Michelle. When he’s not writing, Marty dabbles in his other passions: learning stage magic and playing video games.

Learn more about Marty and his books here.

 Michelle Mulder

Michelle’s first children’s book came out in 2006, and since then, she’s written books for kids about migrant farm workers, child marriage, bicycles, activism, water, garbage, guerrilla gardening, and more. She loves sharing the inspiring stories of people around the world who are doing simple things to make a difference in their communities. (She likes to experiment with their ideas in her hometown, too. After writing Trash Talk, she helped start Repair Café Victoria where volunteers help people fix broken household items. While writing Home Sweet Neighborhood, she got a few new ideas for her own neighbourhood, which now includes a book exchange box, a public garden, and the city’s first traffic-calming road mural.)

When not writing, Michelle can be found speaking at schools and libraries, riding her bicycle, foraging wild foods with her nine-year-old, or walking along the beach near their home in Victoria, BC.

Learn more about Michelle and her books here.


Nadia L. Hohn

Nadia L. Hohn is a dynamic “story lady” who has presented to audiences in Canada, United States, United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Trinidad.  From the age of six years old, Nadia L Hohn began writing stories, drawing, and making books. Her first two books, Music and in the Sankofa Series were published by Rubicon Publishing in 2015.  Her award-winning first picture book, Malaika’s Costume was published in 2016 and its sequel Malaika’s Winter Carnival 2017 by Groundwood Books.  Nadia is also the author of Harriet Tubman: Freedom Fighter, an early reader published by Harper Collins published in December 2018.  A Likkle Miss Lou: How Jamaican Poet Louise Bennett-Coverley Found Her Voice, nonfiction picture book about the performer, playwright, author, and Jamaican cultural ambassador, Louise Bennett-Coverley otherwise known as Miss Lou, will be published in 2019 (Owlkids).

Nadia is currently working on two young adult novels, a play, the next Malaika… book, and others.  She lives in Toronto she teaches, reads a ton, and crafts stories. She also loves to write (songs, blogs, journals, stories), play piano, cook vegan dishes, travel, study arts and cultures of the African diaspora especially Caribbean folk music, Orff music education, and run.

Learn more about Nadia and her books here!

Naseem Hrab

Naseem Hrab is a writer, funny (enough) person and maker of ice cream.

She is the author of the funny (enough) picture books Ira Crumb Makes a Pretty Good Friend and Ira Crumb Feels the Feelings, illustrated by Josh Holinaty (Owlkids). She is also the author of the forthcoming (but not funny) picture book Weekend Dad, illustrated by Frank Viva (Groundwood). When she’s not writing and performing, Naseem works in children’s publishing. She previously worked as the librarian at the Canadian Children’s Book Centre and currently works as the Associate Publisher, Creative at Kids Can Press.

Naseem lives in Toronto with her pet fish, Ian.

Learn more about Naseem and her books here!


Nancy Rose

Nancy Rose lives near Halifax, Nova Scotia, with a busy backyard filled with squirrels, birds and several deer who wander through every day or so. Her interest in nature and wildlife, and a storage room full of fabrics, paint, clay and craft materials merged with her photography passion when she discovered the curiousity of the little North American Red Squirrels who raided the bird feeders in her backyard. By making miniature settings and squirrel size props she has created hundreds of scenarios where the inquisitive squirrels find themselves in some rather human like poses as they search for peanuts hidden in the props. Her best “actor”, Mr. Peanuts, was the first to eat from her hand and he has been followed by a succession of cute and curious squirrels who come daily for peanuts and sunflower seeds and to check out whatever Nancy puts out on the picnic table on her deck.

Nancy’s first book, The Secret Life of Squirrels, was published simultaneously in Canada and the US in 2014 and has also been published in Japan and South Korea. It is also available in a board book for the youngest readers. Merry Christmas, Squirrels followed in 2015, and The Secret Life of Squirrels: A Love Story in December 2016. The Secret Life of Squirrels: Back to School (July 17, 2018) continues the adventures of Mr. Peanuts and Rosie, his special friend. The first three books are also available in paperback through Scholastic Books.

Learn more about Nancy and her books here!

Patrick Weekes

Patrick Weekes was born in California and attended Stanford University. In 2005, he moved to Alberta, Canada, where he joined the BioWare writing team. Since then, he has written for the first three games of the Mass Effect series, as well as Dragon Age: Inquisition.

Patrick’s novels include both fantasy and science fiction for teen and adult readers. He is the author of the Rogues of the Republic fantasy heist caper series, as well as the modern-day science-fiction novel Feeder. In addition, he has written tie-in media for BioWare properties: Dragon Age: The Masked Empire, as well as an issue of the Mass Effect: Homeworlds graphic novel series.

Patrick lives in Edmonton with his wife Karin, his two sons, and too many rescued animals. When not writing or dadding, he builds impractically large Lego sets and watches goofy movies with good fight scenes.

Learn more about Patrick and his books here!

Rachel Dunstan Muller

Rachel is a children’s author as well as an oral storyteller. Her four trade-published juvenile novels include: When the Curtain Rises (translated into Swedish and Norwegian), Ten Thumb Sam, The Solstice Cup and Squeeze. To share her passion for the spoken and written word, Rachel leads writing and storytelling workshops for children and adults. You can learn more about her work at www.racheldunstanmuller.com.

When she’s not reading, writing or storytelling, Rachel likes to explore the wild spaces around her Vancouver Island home on foot or by canoe. From her own fir-tree covered yard, she and her family have watched owls, eagles, bats, squirrels, rabbits, racoons, deer and a young bear.

Learn more about Rachel and her books here.

Sara Gillingham


Sara is an award-winning art director and designer of hundreds of books, who has worked in book publishing for many years for publishers such as Chronicle Books, Disney and Scholastic. When Sara had children of her own, it inspired many book ideas, and since then, Sara has been published as an author/illustrator of over 25 books such as: How to Grow a FriendSnuggle the Baby, The Empowerment Series and the bestselling In My Series. Sara has studied, lived and worked in the UK and the United States, and now lives with her family in Vancouver, BC, where she loves to share her passion for books and picture-making with audiences of all ages.

Learn more about Sara and her books here!

Sara Leach

Sara Leach is an award-winning author of books for children. Her newest book, Penguin Days, illustrated by Rebecca Bender, is the sequel to Slug Days, which received an Honourable Mention in the Foreword INDIES Book Awards for Juvenile Fiction and was nominated for the Chocolate Lily Book Award. Her middle grade novel Count Me In has been translated into four languages, and won the Red Cedar Book Award.

Sara lives in Whistler, BC, where she works as a teacher-librarian. She enjoys skiing, hiking and biking in the local mountains with her two teenaged children and husband.

Learn more about Sara and her books here.

Shelly Becker

Shelly Becker is the author of Sterling’s EVEN SUPERHEROES MAKE MISTAKES (2018, Sterling), EVEN SUPERHEROES HAVE BAD DAYS (a 2018 Blue Spruce Award Nominee), which KIRKUS called “an action-packed romp,” and MINE! MINE! MINE!, which has been included in many “top 5” and “top 10” lists of books to teach the concept of “sharing” over the years. In addition, Shelly is the author of 18 children’s novelty books.

Shelly has four children and two grandchildren. Although she does not not have a cape or laser-vision, Shelly know how it feels to have a bad day and tries to use her inner super-powers to respond in positive ways. Shelly hopes her books will encourage readers of all ages to do the same. She lives in Toronto, Canada.

Learn more about Shelly and her books here.

Tanya Kyi

Tanya writes both fiction and non-fiction, often choosing topics related to science, pop culture, and social history. She enjoys combining factual research with intriguing narratives, or the life stories of interesting folks.

Tanya began her writing career as a high-school poet, producing pages and pages of terrible poems that only her best friend read. Her love of writing took her to the University of Victoria, where she studied creative writing and English. Tanya’s early jobs were as a small-town newspaper reporter and as a staff writer for the Commonwealth Games. She also worked as an editor and graphic designer before turning to children’s books full-time.

Tanya likes to bake, read, and play tennis. Her favourite meal is breakfast, her favourite color is blue, and her favourite children’s book is A Wrinkle in Time.

Her most recent works are Under Pressure (Kids Can), a non-fiction look at the science of stress, and Mya’s Strategy to Save the World (Penguin Random House), the fictional story of one girl’s quest to (a) get her own phone and (b) win the Nobel Prize.

Tanya grew up in Creston, B.C., but now lives in Vancouver with her husband and two children.

Learn more about Tanya and her books here.

Tony Cliff

Tony Cliff is the author of DELILAH DIRK AND THE PILLARS OF HERCULES, available August 2018. It is the third in the critically-acclaimed DELILAH DIRK series of books. A New York Times Bestselling author and nominee for Shuster, Harvey, and Eisner awards, Tony was raised in and currently lives in Vancouver, BC, where he is a thirteen-year veteran of that city’s animation industry.

Learn more about Tony and his books here.

Wendy McLeod MacKnight

Wendy lives in Hanwell, New Brunswick, Canada, and wrote her first novel at age nine. During her first career, she worked for the Government of New Brunswick, ending her career as the Deputy Minister of Education. She has been know to wander art galleries and have spirited conversations with the paintings – mostly in her head, though sometimes not. Her debut middle grade novel, It’s a Mystery, Pig Face! was published by Sky Pony Press in 2017. Her most recent book The Frame-Up shares her love of art and her love for the world-class  Beaverbrook Art Gallery. She hopes readers will be inspired to create their own masterpieces and visit their own local art gallery. And even better, she hopes they’ll come to Fredericton and visit the  Beaverbrook Art Gallery and meet Mona and the rest of the characters in the book (and maybe Wendy, too!)

Learn more about Wendy and her books here!