Road Allowance Kitten is a children’s bilingual (Michif/English) picture book published in 2015 by Gabriel Dumont Institute. Written by Wilfred Burton and illustrated by Christina Johns, with Michif translation by Norman Fleury this primary title is based on a true account about the Métis who lived along the road allowance in the western provinces. One common theme about Métis families living along the roads is their precarious homes. Often governments move the Métis to northern locations for their communities. This meant families were moved at a moment's notice.
Fishing with Grandma is the 2016 release from Inhabit Media written by Inuk author Susan Avingaq with Maren Vsetula. This fun and engaging story is lighthearted and informative as two children plan on a day of fishing with their grandmother. The children visit their Anaanatsiaq (grandmother) one October day and find her sitting on the floor sewing a piece of sealskin and listening to fiddle music playing on the radio. The children ask grandma to take them on an adventure which turns out to be jigging for fish out on the lake.
Leah's Mustache Party is an exciting picture book from Inhabit Media. Inuk author Nadia Mike is an educator who celebrates the importance of having a fun story told in a diverse book. In her first picture the author tells a joyous story about a red-haired four-year-old who decides to dress as a pirate for Halloween. Leah's mother draws a fine mustache on Leah's face as her daughter goes out in her community trick and treating. Leah loves this role playing and dressing up especially with the mustache drawn on her face. So on Leah's next birthday, the party theme is mustaches.
Hokey Dowa Gerda and the Snowflake Girl is a fantasy-based children's book from first-time picture book author/illustrator M. J. Matheson from Manitoba. Faith and Dakota’s ordinary lives take a not-so-ordinary turn when strange goings-on begin happening in their bedrooms at night. This brother and sister find fun ways to solve their problems and make friends, too. Some teachers may find the reference to tobacco problematic. The publisher does not include additional background information about the sweat lodge, tobacco, or traditional names.
The Story of Sammy the Skrunk is a 40-page picture book that tries to instill pride in a little animal named Sammy on his first day of school. Sammy is a unique critter called a skrunk (squirrel + skunk = skrunk). He is really a mixed person and learns from a Métis presenter in school that a skrunk is a mixed animal. And being of mixed ancestry is a good thing. The comic book style from the colour illustrations make the presentation light and breezy.
Thunder Boy Jr. is Sherman Alexie's first picture book for young children. The award-winning Spokane author tells a humourous story about a young Native American boy who wants a different name. Told as a first-person narrative a young Indigenous boy has an issue with his name, Thunder Boy Smith Jr. The problem is the boy's father is known as Thunder Boy Smith Sr. so people on the rez call the father Big Thunder and son becomes known as Little Thunder. The boy thinks this sounds to his ears like a burp or fart. Using broad humour the author captures the boy's thoughts about this nickname.
The Thundermaker is a 32-page Mi'kmaq / English dual language picture book from Nimbus Publishing’s publication for children about the importance of thunder. In Mi’kmaw artist Alan Syliboy’s account that he wrote and illustrated begins in a time long before the world was completed. Set in a small village, the story begins with a family sitting beside their cooking fire while the mother tells a traditional story. Father is Big Thunder, mother is Giju, a renowned storyteller, and their son, Little Thunder. Each has an important role.
Taan's Moons: A Haida Moon Story is a fascinating art-based picture book developed by Alison Gear (poetry) and Kiki van der Heiden and the student artists of Haida Gwaii. During a three month art project involving Kindergarten (some mixed Grade 1/2) classes of all six elementary schools on Haida Gwaii, BC, the author and artist worked together to create this 48-page book about the Bear's Moons. In Haida language taan refers to the bear. The Haida people have a unique way of recording time according to the way the bear follows the seasons or months of the year.
The 2016 TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award was given to author Melanie Florence and illustrator François Thisdale, who will share the $30,000 prize, for their picture book Missing Nimâmâ. Missing Nimama is the first picture book written by Cree/Scottish author Melanie Florence.
Dragonfly Kites is the reissue of Tomson Highway's Songs of the North children's book trilogy. Cree playwright and musician Tomson Highway created this series that focuses on the lives of two Cree brothers who live in northern Manitoba with their parents and a pet dog. The family is a traditional one that lives on the land and during the summer the family camps along one of the many lakes in the region. It is in this homeland that the two young children let their imaginations soar. Their playmates are the family dog and various baby animals and birds as well as sticks and stones.