Monday, November 09, 2009

The launch of Christopher Dinsdale's new book, Betrayed: The Legend of Oak Island, took place at Chapters Newmarket on November 3rd, 2009. It was an exciting evening for all as many came out in support of the new book. Christopher Dinsdale was pleased to also use the launch as a fundraiser for the Clearmeadow P.S. School Council. The money raised will be used to enhance Clearmeadow's extracurricular school activities.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Brenda Chapman review online

"Highly recommended" by Canadian Materials magazine:

Brenda Chapman at Shirley Leishman

Saturday, October 24th, Brenda Chapman and C.B. Forrest, held a booksigning at Shirley Leishman bookstore in the Westgate Shopping Centre, Ottawa. This was their second successful co-signing, with many people stopping by to chat or to buy books.

Photo one: Brenda signing a copy of Trail of Secrets to a woman who had previously bought the other books in the series for her daughter.

Photo two: Interested shoppers stopping by.
Photo three: Brenda and C.B. Forrest (left) posing with a mystery fan.

Brenda Chapman at the Children's Lit Gala

Thursday, October 22nd, Brenda Chapman was one of ten local authors and illustrators invited to present from their latest work at the annual Children's Lit Gala in Nepean, Ontario. Afterwards, the authors and illustrators met with young readers and signed books in the Atrium of Ben Franklin Place. This was Brenda's third time participating in the Gala, which is sponsored by the Ottawa Public Library, the Ottawa Literature Roundtable and Capital Parent magazine.

picture one - With two Ottawa Public Library helpers.
picture two - Brenda reading from Trail of Secrets.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Brenda Chapman will be reading from her latest young adult novel, Trail of Secrets, on
Friday, September 11, 7 pm, at the Lighthouse Bookstore, 349 Main Street, Shawville.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Heather Kirk, author of two teen novels published by Napoleon, will be offering a course in "Creative Writing Fundamentals" at Georgian College in Barrie, Ontario this fall. The course, which is held on Monday evenings, 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., runs from September 21 to December 14, 2009. Heather will also give a one-day seminar called "Writing for Children" on Saturday November 7, 2009. The seminar takes place on the Barrie campus of Georgian College. Heather's courses are part of the Continuing Education program of Georgian College. For more information see the program's web pages.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Brenda Chapman has been visiting Ottawa Public Libraries as part of the TD Summer Reading Club. Her interactive workshop introduces kids to the fun of mystery writing.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Jennifer Maruno was one of twelve authors invited to The Mimico Party in the Park held on June 23 in Toronto. Amid the sounds of jazz and bagpipes and the smell of hot dogs and candy floss, the authors met the neighbourhood and signed copies of their books. Over 1500 residents of all ages visited The Books in the Park area.

Michael Ignatieff, on hand to present his book as a raffle prize, visited with Jennifer to discuss her novel When the Cherry Blossoms Fell and left with a copy.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Celebrating Citizenship
lian goodall, author of Photographing Greatness: the Story of Karsh, has an article about Karsh, Prime Minister King and the first Canadian citizenship ceremony appearing in the June/July issue of The Wayback Times

She will be speaking about Karsh and Prime Minister King at 1pm on Sat. July 4th, 2009 at Woodside National Historic Site, Kitchener, 538 Wellington St. North.

In addition, lian is moving to Picton on July 11th. She's excited that she will be living there and exploring Prince Edward County for the next year.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

On Thursday, June 18th, at the Picton Library, Peggy Dymond Leavey gave a presentation to a Grade 5 class from Queen Elizabeth Public School. They were a delightful group, who didn't mind walking to the library in the rain TWICE! There was a miscommunication about the time and they showed up both morning and afternoon. They got it right the second time. Their teacher had been reading Treasure at Turtle Lake to the class, and they were happy to discover that the book Peggy was reading from, Trouble at Turtle Narrows, was actually a sequel.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Did you know that at the first Canadian citizenship ceremony on January 3rd, 1947, immigrant photographer Yousuf Karsh was granted certificate Number Ten? Author of Photographing Greatness: The Story of Karsh, lian goodall, has an article about the first citizenship ceremony that will appear in the “Wayback Times” on June 23rd, 2009. The article looks at the historic event in 1947 through the eyes of Yousuf Karsh, and also from the point-of-view of Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King, recipient of Canadian citizenship certificate Number One. You can check it out at:

Monday, June 08, 2009

Bernda Chapman visited Natalie Shorkey's Grade two/three class at Churchill Public School in Ottawa on June 2, 2009. Two other classes joined in to hear Brenda talk about mysteries and read from Trail of Secrets.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

On June 2nd, Peggy Dymond Leavey was one of the guest panelists discussing children's literature in Cobourg, ON before a meeting of the Retired Teachers of Ontario, District 30.
In the photo, left to right: authors Caley Fiddick, Ted Staunton, Richard Scrimger, Linda Hutsell-Manning, Peggy Dymond Leavey and illustrator, Brenda Clark.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Christopher Dinsdale was honoured to be a part of the 2009 Markham Public Library "Battle of the Books". Christopher's Stolen Away had been selected as one of the 25 "battle" books. Over 100 students participated in the big evening of book trivia and it was amazing to see the teams fire off correct answers for all 25 novels. After a brief question and answer session with the team players, Christopher enjoyed meeting many of the families at the end of the contest.

A week later, Christopher participated at Denne Public School's "Literacy Night" in Newmarket. Christopher discussed through a powerpoint presentation the steps he takes to develop a historical adventure novel. The library audience greatly enjoyed the visit and wished Christopher all the best with the launch of his new novel "Betrayed" in November.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Philippa Dowding’s new children’s novel, “The Gargoyle in My Yard”, got a great start in life at the beautiful McNally Robinson bookstore on Saturday, May 16, 2009. The book launch drew more than sixty friends, family and neighbours, who bought every book in the store – the bookstore SOLD OUT!

Philippa read a few chapters (and brought the gargoyle’s dry, gravelly voice into the world for the first time), signed dozens of books, and enjoyed every minute.

Thanks to Napoleon Publishing, and to everyone who came out in support of a naughty gargoyle! Look for a sequel coming soon…

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

“What a successful book launch! The joy and excitement about your book are contagious.” These were the words of Daria Sharanewych, librarian for the Children’s Department, Mississauga Central Library. She was describing the launch of When the Cherry Blossoms Fell by Jennifer Maruno, published by Napoleon Publishing.
Sprays of cherry blossoms, pots of green tea and trays of mochi welcomed those who wished to hear Jennifer read. Mochi, made of pounded rice and sweet red bean paste, is a special Japanese treat featured in the novel. For some it was their first taste.
On hand to welcome the guests were 8 year old Emiko Arai and 15 year old Jamie Aitken wearing traditional Japanese kimonos and carrying paper parasols.
In 1988, Jennifer, contracted to write a teacher’s guide for a book especially created to commemorate the events of the war in Canada, she found it difficult to do the necessary research. The history books had left out most of the truth.
When Jennifer met Eiko Kitagawa Maruno, she was unaware of Eiko’s history. At times, Eiko referred to “camp” and the hardships that went with it. Soon her story became the key to unlocking this historical secret. Eiko shared it, along with her photographs, over time.
This episode in Japanese-Canadian history became a novel. When the Cherry Blossoms Fell is the story of nine-year-old Michiko Minagawa. She wants to be proud of her heritage but can’t be. The world is at war. The Government of Canada has taken unprecedented actions against her community and treats all Japanese people as enemy aliens.
On May 2, Napoleon Publishing launched When the Cherry Blossoms Fell, a book for middle-grade readers. The launch coincided with the beginning of Asian Heritage Month. 93 year old, Eiko Maruno attended the celebration, along with members of her family Pat Adachi; one of the interment camp teachers was also present.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Brenda Chapman held a very successful launch for Trail of Secrets on Sunday, May 3rd at Whispers Pub and Eatery in Ottawa. Over a hundred people came to help celebrateand buy books. Brenda is pictured with Sally and Diane from Shirley Leishman bookstore.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Philippa Dowding shared her book, The Gargoyle in My Yard, with the grade 4 and 5 students at Hawthorne II Public School in downtown Toronto. Over the course of four visits, Philippa shared the story about Katherine and the problem gargoyle living in her backyard. The children were interested in the description of their neighbourhood and city, and asked questions about how a writer comes up with stories. They also liked the books about gargoyles, and the gargoyle puppet Philippa brought along as a sidekick.

Monday, April 20, 2009

lian goodall Photographing Greatness: the Story of Karsh

Yes Oui CANSCAIP, the Quebec chapter of CANSCAIP, hosts its last meeting of the spring on Monday, May 25th at 7 p.m. at the John A. Simms Community Centre at 8 Westminster South in Montreal West. At 7:30 p.m., Lian Goodall, author of four non-fiction books for children, will give a talk entitled "The Joys of Non-fiction: What Elvis Knew". Free Admission. Open to adult creators of children's material (ie. books, magazine articles, etc.) of all levels of abilities and experience. For more information, please contact one of the Yes Oui CANSCAIP's co-representatives: Carol-Ann Hoyte at or Alastair Reeves at

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

On March 30th, Christopher Dinsdale ran a day-long writing workshop for the Grade 7 and 8 students at Ashton Meadows P.S. in Markham, Ontario. Christopher walked the students through an interactive program that explained how research drove the storylines of his novels Broken Circle and Stolen Away. By the end of the session, the students had in hand the framework to begin their own historical stories. A good time was had by all and Ashton Meadows wished Christopher good luck with his soon-to-be-released third novel, Betrayed.

Friday, March 27, 2009

On March 17th, Peggy Dymond Leavey visited the Warkworth Public Library in Warkworth, Ontario to do a presentation for the children gathered there. This picture, courtesy of The Shield newspaper, shows some of the 14 children who came out for the event. That's Peggy, wearing the green, St. Patrick's Day outfit.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

From Rona Arato ...

Uncle Tom’s Cabin Historic Site

written by Rona Arato,
Author of "Working for Freedom: the Story of Josiah Henson"

Last month I had the privilege of reading from my book, Working for Freedom, the Story of Josiah Henson to 7th and 8th grade students from the Winston Churchill Public School at the Uncle Tom’s Cabin Historic Site in Dresden Ontario.

Josiah Henson had a major impact on Blacks who escaped from slavery in the United States to freedom in Canada in the years before the U. S. Civil War. I love telling his story because it shows how one dedicated person can make a great difference in the lives of others. Josiah’s fierce conviction that everyone deserves to be free, his strong work ethic and his belief in education, helped escaped Blacks make the most of their newly acquired freedom.

Everyone at the Site was wonderful. Steven Cook, Site Manager and Barbara Carter, Josiah’s great great granddaughter was each a great help when I was writing the book. The students were happy to learn more about Josiah. They followed the reading with a tour of the museum and a pizza lunch. It was a terrific day for all of us.

Rona Arato

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Heather Kirk is busy writing a new book for young people at present, so she does not have time for some of her other, more visible activities like teaching creative writing or giving booktalks. Heather, the author of two teen novels published by Napoleon (Warsaw Spring and A Drop of Rain), is working on a book about the must successful passive-resistance movement of the twentieth century. For those who would like to SEE Heather doing something, this painting of Heather by her friend Indra Sharma, a fine poet and painter, living in Elmvale, Ontario shows Heather THINKING. Heather is seen from behind. The autumnal landscape represents Heather's birthsign of Libra which reaches its zenith in the autumn.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Here are a couple of photos taken yesterday (Family Literacy Day), January 27th, at the Quinte West Public Library where Peggy Dymond Leavey gave a presentation to two Grade 5 classes from Trenton schools.
The occasion was also the official launch of "Trouble at Turtle Narrows". Children's librarian, Rosemary Kirby, really made it a special occasion, making sure the press was there and providing refreshments. It was a great group of kids. One picture shows Peggy talking to the group, and the other was taken during question & answer time--always good fun!

Monday, January 12, 2009

After reading The Ghost of Northumberland Strait by Lori Knutson, 13-year-old Kelly Lepchuk remembered the old floppy sunhat she owns. Donning it and a blue shirt, she dressed up as Charly. She’s pictured here posing in her backyard last July in Beaverlodge, Alberta.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Teaching writing is something author lian goodall lives. Beginning Jan. 27, 2009 for 7 weeks from 7 pm to 9:30 pm she'll be at the Learning Enterprise in Orangeville, Ontario teaching "Creative Writing/Children's Books." This will be the fourth time lian has taught this class, and each time she learns something new from her students.
The course costs $95 and students may register by calling the Learning Enterprise at 519-941-2661.