Sunday, May 19, 2013

New Kids’ Books Help Define Toronto

Seeing Canadians portrayed in books and art helps us understand who they are and why their homeland is important. where and how they live and why these places matter.

The launch for In Lucia's Neighbourhood is at Type Books, 883 Queen St. W., Friday between 6 and 8 p.m.

Two fresh books, In Lucia’s Neighbourhood and ABC of Toronto, are to be released soon.
The former, written by Pat Shewchuk and Marek Colek, and based on their animated film Montrose Avenue, is being launched Friday May 10 at Type Books on Queen St. W.
Who let them in? Two teddy bears and a squirrel inspecting remains at the Royal Ontario Museum.
 It is about a 7-year-old girl, Lucia, who shows readers through her neighborhood in West-end Toronto. The story begins with a quote from urban thinker Jane Jacobs and features scenes that symbolize life in the old city of Toronto, where leafy residential streets lead to main avenues with streetcars rolling along them. It’s very much the Toronto version of Sesame Street.
A moose and a beaver sail across the  skyline.The second book, ABC of Toronto is also from Kids Can Press, which will mark 40 years of publishing with a party at Harbourfront Centre May 16.  ABC of Toronto is an A to Z exploration of the city by Kingston author Per-Henrik Gürth, with a cast of anthropomorphized woodland creatures hanging out at various Toronto destinations.
Visuals in an image from In Lucia’s Neighbourhood — red rocket, hydro poles, streetlights on curved davit arms, and helmeted biker bearing down — are quintessential Toronto.Through the alphabetized pages the reader will discover a moose and calf walking the “B-for-Beach(es)” boardwalk as a beaver jogs by (the author is unwilling to take sides in the great Beach vs. Beaches naming controversy). There are a moose and fox dressed as British Redcoat soldiers firing the cannon at F is for Fort York. There’s an M for Maple Leafs; S is for Streetcar; Y is for Yonge St. lit up at night; and so on.

These books sound charming and will, I hope, do well in the Canadian market as well as abroad!

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