Announcing our 2017-18 events list

What’s the most magnificent thing you can do on October 14th?
Join us for our Annual VCLR Illustrator’s Breakfast featuring Ashley Spires
October 14, 2017 | University Golf Course | 8:00 am -12:00 pm
Early Bird Rates end September 15, 2017

A Celebration of our Award Winning BC Authors and Illustrators
January 16, 2018, 7 – 9 pm | University Golf Course | Bubbly and Snacks | Silent Auction

Free to members and students.

Serendipity 2018
Beasts, birds, and words: The poetics of children’s books
with four Canadian artists/poets whose metaphors and images captivate and engage both the young and the young at heart. Join us to hear Isabelle ArsenaultRobert Heidbreder, Kyo Maclear, Tiffany Stone, and Frédéric Gauthier of Les Éditions de la Pastèque talk about their works, their inspiration, and the Canadian children’s book publishing space.
Mar. 3, 2018 | 8am to 3:30 pm | UBC Robson Square
Early bird rates end February 14, 2018 | Final ticket sales close February 28, 2018
Includes: Coffee, snacks, lunch, book sales, and book signing.

Register online here or download a mail-in registration form here.

Don’t forget that except where noted, these are member-only events. Don’t miss out. Please make sure your membership is up-to-date. Renew your VCLR membership here.

2017 Information Book Award Shortlist

The jury for the Children’s Literature Roundtables of Canada’s Information Book Award are pleased to announce the 2017 Shortlist, appended and attached below.

Voting, by members of the Children’s Literature Roundtables across Canada has begun and will continue through October 31, 2017.  The 2017 Information Book Award winner and honour titles will be announced in early November 2017, and the award will be presented in January 2018, in Vancouver.

Our thanks to all Canadian publishers of information books for children for participating in this award.

The Children’s Literature Roundtables of Canada Announce . . .

2017 Information Book Award Shortlist

(Ten Terrific Nonfiction titles published in 2016, listed alphabetically)

Adrift at Sea: A Vietnamese Boy’s Story of Survival. By Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch with Tuan Ho. Illustrations by Brian Deines. Published by Pajama Press.

Canada Year By Year. By Elizabeth MacLeod.  Illustrations by Sydney Smith. Published by Kids Can Press.

Half-Truths and Brazen Lies: An Honest Look at Lying. By Kira Vermond.  Illustrations by Clayton Hanmer. Published by Owl Kids.

I Am Not a Number. By Jenny Kay Dupuis and Kathy Kacer. Illustrations by Gillian Newland. Published by Second Story Press.

Level the Playing Field: The Past, Present, and Future of Women’s Pro Sports. By Kristina Rutherford. Published by Owl Kids.

My Book of Birds. By Geraldo Valério.  Published by Groundwood Books.

Pride: Celebrating Diversity & Community. By Robin Stevenson. Published by Orca Books.

To Burp or Not to Burp: A Guide to Your Body in Space.  By Dr. Dave Williams and Loredana Cunti. Published by Annick Press.

The Toad. By Elise Gravel. Published by Tundra Books.

The Tragic Tale of the Great Auk. By Jan Thornhill. Published by Groundwood Books.

Information Book Award Jury: Vicki Donoghue, Natalie Schembri, Sharlene Sharma, Taren Urquhart, Danielle Wing, and Michelle Yule. Chair: Kay Weisman





*Download the ballot form here.

Lois Brymer April 24, 1946 – March 27, 2017

Sad news for the MACL community: Lois Brymer, Master of Arts in Children’s Literature alumna, and former Chair of the Information Book Award, died on Monday, March 27th.

Lois was a gracious and vibrant member of the MACL and Vancouver Children’s Literature Roundtable communities. She was a journalist and member of the Pandora’s Vox choir. She studied in the MACL Program from 2000 to 2005. Her thesis, ”A Content Analysis of ‘What is Canadian’ in a Collection of Rare and Historical Canadian Children’s Books 1799-1939 in the University of British Columbia’s Rare and Special Collections Library” was supervised by Professor Ann Curry, with Professors Jane Flick and Judi Saltman as committee members, examined Canadian identity in historical children’s books.

After graduation, Lois worked tirelessly on behalf of Canadian children’s literature. She chaired the Children’s Literature Roundtables of Canada’s Information Book Award for many years.

A service will be held Tuesday afternoon, April 11, at West Vancouver Baptist Church at 450 Mathers Ave, West Vancouver.

Past VCLR speaker, Mem Fox, detained at border

Some VCLR folk will remember our Mem Fox event at the Hyatt Regency Ballroom quite a few years ago.  Mem was a fabulous and friendly guest for all. Vibrant and wonderful.Her website features her new book on multiculturalism in Australia– mentioned in the articles below.


Article from the Guardian

And this article — from an Australian paper-book editor from Australia

Accused of having an incorrect visa, Mem Fox detained by immigration officials at LA airport

DEBORAH BOGLE, Books Editor, The Advertiser February 22, 2017 7:33pm Subscriber only

AUSTRALIA’S best-loved children’s author, Mem Fox, was left sobbing and shaken after being detained for two hours and aggressively interrogated by immigration officials at Los Angeles airport.

Fox says she’s unlikely to ever travel to the United States again after being made to feel like “a prisoner at Guantanamo Bay”.

President Donald Trump had created the climate for this sort of behaviour, she said, adding: “This is what happens when extremists take power.”

En route to Milwaukee for a conference on February 9, where she was to deliver the opening keynote address at a literacy conference, Fox was ushered into an airport holding room and told she was travelling on the wrong visa. This was incorrect and the US Embassy in Canberra has since apologised. Fox, 70, said that by the time she checked in to her hotel she was shaking and sobbing.

“I am old and white, innocent and educated, and I speak English fluently,”she said. “Imagine what happened to the others in the room, including an old Iranian woman in her 80s, in a wheelchair.

“The way I was treated would have made any decent American shocked to the core, because that’s not America as a whole, it really isn’t. It’s just that people have been given permission to let rip in a fashion that is alarming.”

The irony that the two most popular of her more than 25 books published in the US,* Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes* and *Whoever You Are*, are both about diversity, was not lost on her. Nor was the fact that the theme of the conference she was attending was inclusivity and diversity.

Fox has visited the US more than 100 times since 1985, and is widely known there as an author and literacy educator.

After returning to Adelaide, she made a complaint to the US Embassy in Canberra, and received an emailed apology. An embassy spokeswoman told *The Advertiser *consular cases were not discussed with the media for privacy reasons.

Her experience has confirmed in Fox the importance of her new book, *I’m Australian Too*, about multiculturalism, illustrated by an Indian-born Australian, Ronojoy Ghosh. Fox wrote the book in late 2014 in response to what she saw as a rising tide of antagonism towards immigrants and refugees. “And it’s got worse since then,” she said. “I just feel that the hate speech that is going on is trying to change that aspect of our national character and it would be heartbreaking if that happened.

Serendipity 2017: From Beginning to End (Life, Death, and Everything In Between)

Jeremy Tankard  |  Jennifer A. Nielsen | Martha Brockenbrough

Serendipity 2017 looks to the stages of development between childhood and teenage years, from the humorous antics of Jeremy Tankard’s Grumpy Bird to Jennifer A. Nielsen’s exploration of a young girl finding her family divided overnight by the sudden rise of the Berlin Wall in A Night Divided, and Martha Brockenbrough’s Game of Love and Death, a tale of destiny and personal choice throughout various times and places. The work of these three phenomenal artists, from picture books to nonfiction to historical novels, will make you laugh, cry, and think about humanity in surprising ways.

Mar. 4, 2017 | 8am to 3:30 pm | UBC Ike Barber Library

Early bird rates end February 12, 2017 | Regular rates end February 28, 2017
Includes: Breakfast, lunch, book sales, and book signing.

Register here

Congratulations to Jo-Anne Naslund

Murray Elliott Award for Outstanding Service to Teacher Education in the Faculty of Education

Jo-Anne Naslund is the 2016 recipient of the Murray Elliott Service Award for Outstanding Service to the Teacher Education Program.  Jo-Anne’s many contributions to Teacher Education at UBC are characterized by her passion and commitment to supporting every teacher candidate in developing an understanding of the resources available to help them in their journey toward becoming an exemplary educator. Jo-Anne’s practice is based on the needs of teacher candidates in the 21st century: she both embraces technology and finds ways to provide teacher candidates with the support they need to integrate technology into their practice. An exemplary librarian and teacher-librarian, Jo-Anne provides leadership by working closely with instructors and their students to keep abreast of new curricular and pedagogical developments. She mobilizes community resources, acts as an ambassador at various off-campus events, and is unfailingly helpful to all who seek her assistance. She is also to be commended for her commitment to showcasing literary events, Canadian authors and multiple resources to support learning.

and the winner is . . .

Thank you to everyone who took the time and made the effort to participate in the voting process for the 2016 Information Book Award.

This year’s winner is:
west-coast-wildWest Coast Wild: A Nature Alphabet
Written by Deborah Hodge

Illustrated by Karen Reczuch
Published by Groundwood



This year’s honour book is:

child-soldierChild Soldier: When Boys and Girls are Used in War
By Jessica Dee Humphreys and Michel Chikwanine

Illustrated by Claudia Davila
Published by KidsCan Press

Information Book Award voting closes Monday October 31

Exercise your right to vote for the 2016 Information Book Award! Complete the ballot and email it to by October 31st.

The 2016 Information Book Award winner and honour titles will be announced in early November 2016, and the award will be presented January 17, 2017 at the VCLR Celebrate BC event in Vancouver.

Our thanks to all Canadian publishers of information books for children for participating in this award.

2016 Information Book Award Shortlist
(Nine Notable Nonfiction titles published in 2015, listed alphabetically)

The Art of the Possible: An Everyday Guide to Politics. By Edward Keenan. Illustrations by Julie McLaughlin. Published by Owlkids Books.Child Soldier: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War. By Jessica Dee Humphreys and Michel Chikwanine.  Illustrations by Claudia Davila. Published by Kids Can Press.

Dinosaurs From Head to Tail. By Stacey Roderick.  Illustrations by Kwanchai Moriya. Published by Kids Can Press.

DNA Detective. By Tanya Lloyd Kyi. Illustrations by Lil Crump. Published by Annick Press.

Head Lice. By Elise Gravel. Published by Tundra Books.

Urban Tribes: Native Americans in the City. Edited by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Beth Leatherdale.  Published by Annick Press.

West Coast Wild: A Nature Alphabet. By Deborah Hodge. Illustrations by Karen Reczuch. Published by Groundwood.

What’s the Buzz? Keeping Bees in Flight.  By Merrie-Ellen Wilcox. Published by Orca Books.

The Wolf-Birds. By Willow Dawson. Published by Owl Kids.

Information Book Award Jury: Kirsten Andersen, Lois Brymer, Amara Charters, Sarah Isbister, Meghan Ross, Kelly Savage, Fiona Trotter, Jane Whittingham, Danielle Wing, Michelle Yule. Chair: Kay Weisman

Roundtables Voting Deadline: Monday October 31, 2016

Winner Announcement: November 2016

Presentation of the Award: Tuesday January 17, 2017 at the VCLR Celebrates Event

Further Information/Voting Submissions:

Annual Illustrator’s Breakfast featuring Steve Jenkins

Steve Jenkins postcard

Steve Jenkins is the brilliant illustrator, designer, and author of information books on the natural world.

From the tiniest to the largest creatures, to renderings in real size and of what we cannot see under the skin, Jenkins illustrates creatures large and small using cut paper as his medium. Beetles, boas, bugs, bears, bones, teeth, eyes, ears, curious facts and amazing images—that’s what readers find in books created by Steve Jenkins.

October 15, 2016 | University Golf Course | 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Registration starts at 8 am. Welcome remarks and breakfast start at 8:45 am. Your ticket price includes a delicious hot breakfast buffet (with vegetarian options), a talk by Steve Jenkins, book sales and silent auction. Mr. Jenkins will sign books at the end of the program.

Early Bird Rates end September 25, 2016

Members $55 | Non Members $70 | Students $35

Regular Rates September 16 to  to October 12, 2016
Members $65 | Non Members $80 | Students $40