Happy Friday, all! Let’s celebrate the start of the weekend with an amazing and generous giveaway courtesy of Canadian publisher Raincoast Books!
I am delighted to be hosting a special Back to School Giveaway from Raincoast Books. Open to Canadian residents ages 18 and up, the lucky winner of this giveaway will receive six beautiful new books from Chronicle Books along with a Pierre the Maze Detective canvas tote bag. The total value of the prize package (including books and tote bag) is around $175.
Let’s take a closer look at the children’s books included in the giveaway:
Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova by Laurel Snyder, illus. Julie Morstad.
Swan is work of art; beautifully poetic, moving and gorgeously illustrated. I had such high expectations for this biographical picture book and it was even more than I could have imagined. You can read my full review here.
Leo: A Ghost Story by Mac Barnett, illus. Christian Robinson.
Award-winners Mac Barnett (Extra Yarn, Sam & Dave Dig a Hole) and Christian Robinson (Josephine, Last Stop on Market Street) have teamed up for a touching and uniquely narrated and illustrated ghost story. Leo is a lonely young ghost who has found that most people generally do not react well to finding him in their house. After deciding to up and roam the confusing big city he finds himself in the company of a young friendly girl named Jane. Jane can see Leo and immediately welcomes him to play fantastical games, but when Leo discovers that Jane thinks him to be an imaginary friend rather than a ghost he worries it will scare her away forever. But when Leo unexpectedly comes to his new friend’s rescue, things turn out even better than he imagined. I have reread this picture book a number of times now and come away with something different each time I read it. Barnett and Robinson are each so distinct and perceptive in their writing and art respectively that their joint work here offers so much richness and wonder.
Big Bear Little Chair by Lizi Boyd *
Since reading and falling in love with Lizi Boyd’s wordless picture book Flashlight, I have been a big fan and on the lookout for her next books. As with her previous children’s titles, Big Bear Little Chair packs so much delight with spare prose and carefully selected colours. I have read a number of ‘opposites’ books yet I found myself terrifically charmed here with big-to- little-to-tiny comparisons I have not yet come across. For example: a big zebra with a little broom, or a big seal with a little castle and tiny bucket. I love the limited colour palette here of red, grey, black and white; the beautiful and almost folk-style illustrations pop out so well against the minimal text. This latest from Boyd is, I think, her strongest and most standout offering yet: perfect for younger readers learning about colours, animals and opposites/contrasts and for young readers who enjoy creating stories from minimally versed picture books.
The Wonderful World of Pascal the Very Brave by Magali Le Huche *
Imagine the busy, bustling world of Richard Scarry, but starring a platypus and his singular friends, and you will get something along the lines of this utterly charming and funny offering from author/illustrator Magali Le Huche. Chockablock with immaculately detailed illustrations, continuously running tales featuring Pascal and his friends, and panel-drawn stories, this picture book is a visual treat for readers young and old. The Wonderful World of Pascal the Very Brave is full of oddball yarns and lively whimsy; perfect for fans of Marianne Dubus’s picture books, Graeme Base, Richard Scarry, or Martin Handford’s Where’s Waldo?.
The Bear’s Surprise by Benjamin Chaud
Hibernation is over and Little Bear is ready for another adventure! But where is Papa Bear? Never fear, Little Bear will find him! Follow the curious cub through interactive cutouts on every page of this detail-rich extravaganza: into a bustling forest, deep beneath a mysterious cave, and en route to a rollicking circus in full swing. What will Little Bear discover when he finally locates his high-flying papa? The ultimate showstopping, sweet surprise awaits in this third installment of Benjamin Chaud’s acclaimed series that includes the NYT Notable Book The Bear’s Song and The Bear’s Sea Escape.
Pierre the Maze Detective: The Search for the Stolen Maze Stone by Hiro Kamigaki & IC4DESIGN
Pierre the Maze Detective has a new case. Mr X has stolen the Maze Stone, which has the power to turn the whole of Opera City into a maze. Can you help Pierre and his friend Carmen find their way through the mazes – and stop Mr X before it’s too late? This beautifully illustrated book features 15 full-spread illustrations of intricate, magical mazes. Take a trip through a fantastic world of underground cities, hot-air balloons, tree-top towns and haunted houses. Trace your way through each maze, spot the clues and solve the extra mystery challenges along the way. Hours of puzzle fun, for all maze detectives aged 8+. A page of answers with the routes through the mazes and other solutions is included at the end of the book.
The contest is open to Canadian residents only, and entrants must be aged 18 and up. The contest will run from August 21, 2015 until August 28, 2015. One winner will be randomly selected at the end of giveaway. The winner will have 48 hours to respond by emailing me at fabbookreviews[at]gmail[dot]com, confirming their name and their mailing address.
I received copies of titles from Raincoast Books in exchange for an honest review; *some for the purposes of this giveaway. Opinions and comments regarding the titles are my own.