Have a Perfect Day with Pinny in Summer

Have a perfect day by checking out these stunning spreads from Pinny in Summer, written by Joanne Schwartz and illustrated by Isabelle Malenfant. What’s Pinny’s idea of a perfect day, you ask? Pinny and her friends spend their day watching clouds, picking wild blueberries and enjoying a picnic.

Pinny in Summer
Pinny in Summer
Pinny in Summer


Pinny in Summer

This engaging story, told in chapter-like episodes, follows Pinny on a long, lazy summer day. As sunshine turns to rain and back to sun again, Pinny searches for a wishing rock, watches clouds, picks wild blueberries, feeds a seagull, and bakes a cake to share with her friends.

An ideal book for children beginning to make the jump to independent reading, Pinny in Summer demonstrates the joy young people find in nature and an unstructured life. Pinny is allowed to explore her world freely, and her small setbacks and triumphs will be familiar to every child.

With charming illustrations by Isabelle Malenfant and a spare, poetic text from author Joanne Schwartz, Pinny in Summer is a bright and inviting picture book that captures all the delight of a perfect summer day.

Spotted in a bookstore near you: The Missing Dog is Spotted

The Missing Dog is Spotted

Written by Jessica Scott Kerrin

Trevor Tower doesn’t worry about being short until he is assigned dog-walking duty with Loyola Louden, the tallest person in his class. But the dogs are a wonderful distraction, and even before Trevor and Loyola vow to solve the mystery of a missing spotted dog, they are becoming good friends.

In this standalone prequel to the acclaimed novel The Spotted Dog Last Seen—a New York Public Library Book for Reading and Sharing (2013)—Jessica Scott Kerrin gives readers another mystery to solve and a lost dog to find. But does the missing dog even exist?

Gustave is a friend you won’t forget


A little mouse and his friend, Gustave, go out to play one afternoon in this darkly comic story about the sadness of losing a friend and the joy of making a new one.

The mouse’s mother has always warned the young friends not to stray too far from home. There is a cat, she says, and it is dangerous to go far away.

But danger doesn’t stop this curious pair, and soon they find themselves face-to-face with their big blue-eyed enemy. In a feat of bravery, Gustave allows his friend the chance to escape — but is gobbled up by the cat in the process. Heartbroken, the little mouse must return home — without his friend — and tell his mother what has happened.

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A sweet surprise ending turns this melancholy tale of friendship into a strangely funny book.

“A Shared Space” – A Guest Post by Irene Luxbacher

Irene's workspace, where she makes her own kind of magic.
Irene's father's workshop space in more recent years.

Irene’s father’s workshop space in more recent years.

I grew up watching my dad work quietly at his trade. A small tailor shop in the garment district of downtown Toronto was my introduction to the world of pattern, texture, patches of color and a wild assortment of kaleidoscopic characters. There, in his shop, we got to share in the best wordless conversations ever, both looking out the large storefront window onto an ever bustling Spadina Avenue, and in again at each other. Working on Mr. Frank was a great way to re-visit a lot of those memories.

Because Mr. Frank was a story that was so personal, the first place I looked for inspiration was in the boxes of fabrics and patterns my dad had accumulated over the years. I collected scraps and papers that reminded me of the materials he had. Old newspapers and patterns he had stowed away as part of his reference collection became a part of the backdrop of his shop in the book’s illustrations. I made lots of paintings that resembled the look of woven fabric textures, and of course poured over lots of old photos of my dad over the years, drawing and re-drawing his facial expressions and posture as he aged from a young boy into an elderly man.

Irene's workspace, where she makes her own kind of magic.

Irene’s workspace, where she makes her own kind of magic.

In a lot of ways, my studio space is very similar to my dad’s workshop. At first glance both our workspaces are pretty unassuming. There’s a quiet feeling of productivity, practicality and comfort in the organized mess that I think I adopted from his way of approaching his work. From the scraps on the floor, to the piles of collected patterns and images, we both — in our own time — work quietly together. Sketching out designs for a new idea or style, piecing together patterns and textures in a new way… fussing over details that please the eye and somehow “fit” and “feel” right.

In many ways, making Mr. Frank reminded me that the wordless conversation I remember sharing with my dad while watching him at work in his shop is far from over.


On his last day before retirement, Mr. Frank is sewing the most wonderful outfit of his long career. Who could it be for?

In all his years working as a tailor, Mr. Frank has made all kinds of clothes. From the practical uniforms of the 1940s to the wild and weird designs of the 1960s and 1970s, he has seen (and sewn) just about everything. But today’s project is especially close to Mr. Frank’s heart.

With its use of textiles and sensitive period detail, Irene Luxbacher’s artwork is the perfect complement to her understated text. The result is a story that children and grandparents can share with equal delight.

Don’t miss this picture book!



This cleverly conceived board book appeals to a young child’s sense of fun while providing facts about different animals. A series of impossible but delightful-to-imagine cautionary statements are followed by informative explanations:

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The simplicity and humor in the text and watercolor illustrations will make this book a story-time favorite.

You’ll be moved by I Moved My Hand

Moví la mano / I Moved My Hand

When a little girl moves her hand, she changes the world as she discovers it. As she moves her known world she discovers her own power and creates everything anew.

The poem, written by Argentine poet Jorge Luján, comes from a culture saturated with magic in which even the very young can make the world by reaching out and moving it. Mandana Sadat’s imaginative illustrations deepen and enrich the text. Movi la mano / I Moved My Hand is a special contribution to the world of children’s books for the very young (and the not so young).




You’ll simply love A Simple Case of Angels


Nicola’s adorable little dog, June Bug, keeps getting into trouble. She steals the neighbor’s turkey, yanks down the Christmas tree and destroys Mum’s almost-finished giant crossword. Everyone is mad, and it looks as though June Bug’s days are numbered.

Will doing a good deed make up for June Bug’s bad behavior?

Nicola certainly hopes so. And when she and June Bug come across a new nursing home in the neighborhood, it feels like a Sign. They volunteer to become regular visitors at Shady Oaks, certain that June Bug’s cute tricks will cheer up the elderly residents.


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