Toward the end of the year we all look for books to share, read and give. Some of these titles are brand new, others are older. Some deal with holidays, others with winter. Happy reading!
Ramadan, The Holy Month of Fasting by Ausma Zahanat Khan is a beautifully illustrated photo essay, a nonfiction picture book chockfull of information on the what, why, how and where of Ramadan. The book covers global traditions and includes personal stories, even recipes. ISBN 978-1-4598-1181-2, Orca Book Publishers
In the same Origins series as above, Christmas From Solstice to Santa by Nikki Tate and Dani Tate-Stratton is a joyful celebration of Christmas traditions around the world. This, too, includes personal stories and recipes as well as a glossary and additional resources. ISBN 978-1-4598-1355-7, Orca Book Publishers
Based on a real street in Toronto, Canada where many immigrant families settled, Birds on Wishbone Street by Suzanne Del Rizzo is a beautiful story of people coming from different cultures. They share their food and their stories. But newly arrived Sami is not talking much. Until a bird needs his special attention and brings back memories and stories from home. Illustrated in clay and mixed media, the glorious art is a joy to explore. The book works on many different levels and even offers instructions on how to make your own winter bird treats. ISBN 978-1-77278-219-6, Pajama Press
Tiny Reindeer by Chris Naylor-Ballesteros is the wonderful tale of a reindeer so tiny that he is of no use to Santa or the other reindeer. He just gets into trouble. Until he learns of one little girl’s wish for the perfect tiny reindeer. Sneaking away in Santa’s sleigh Tiny Reindeer embarks on a big adventure and finds a loving home. ISBN 978-0-7352-7118-0, Tundra Books
The Christmas Pig is J.K. Rowling’s newest book. Reminiscent of classics like The Phantom Toll Booth and The Polar Express, this thick novel can be read aloud to all ages but, like Harry Potter, has its dark sides. Black & white art by Jim Field illustrates each chapter. Piggy is Jack’s favourite stuffed animal because he has always whispered all of his secrets to it. But when his new stepsister, teenager Holly, tosses Jack’s trusted pig out of the car window, Jack falls asleep full of anger and tears. The adventures that follow feature toys and objects coming to life, whisking Jack away to the Land of Lost Things. Told in typical J.K. Rowling style, everything that happens seems quite plausible – objects, and feelings too, are sorted into ‘much loved’ or ‘barely missed’ things. If no human cared about them at all, these Things eventually will be eaten by the terrible, scary, voracious Loser. But if there is a glimmer of hope, they might rise again to live on earth among their beloved humans. Jack’s adventures, as well as the writing style, are brilliant. Towards the middle the story turns dark and quite scary in places but it has the feel of old fairytales that taught morals. ISBN 978-1-338-79023-8, Scholastic. To read a more in-depth review of this book, click here: https://www.margrietruurs.com/jk-rowlings-new-book-the-christmas-pig/
Margriet Ruurs is a Canadian author of over 40 books for children. She shares her love of books and travel here: www.globetrottingbooklovers.com