It must be summer. I have read so much but have recorded nothing.

Here is a brief overview of the things I have been reading this summer.


Michelle Kadarusman’s latest middle grade book, Berani, was a great read and one I plan to read to my guy as soon as we are done the book we are currently reading. The book is told in three voices – Malia, who has had a privileged upbringing in Indonesia and uses her voice to share the plight of her country’s orangutan; Ari, who knows he is lucky to be working in his uncle’s shop so he can go to school and play on the chess club; and Ginger Juice, his uncle’s orangutan, which is being kept in a too-small cage and is growing more desolate by the day.

Each voice is unique, and each story is connected to the other. There was also lots of things going on – with Malia, with Ari and with Ginger Juice herself. The ending was sad, but beautiful, but a bit tragic.  I look forward to reading it again.

Berani is from Pajama Press and retails for $23.95.

Summer at Tiffany’s

Apparently this book is a sequel to Karen Swan’s Christmas at Tiffany’s, which I didn’t read and that was OK. I didn’t feel as though I missed anything, but clearly I did – a whole books worth. I may go back and read it at some point because I quite liked the characters in this book. I think it would be interesting to meet the younger Cassie, who just left a 10-year marriage. It would also be interesting to read about her stops in Paris, New York and London because that trip is talked about a lot in this story.

Larry Loves Vancouver

What I like about Larry is that he is a dog. And he likes everything about Vancouver that I like – the ride up Grouse Mountain, totem poles and boats. He doesn’t like lions, particularly ones guarding Lions Gate Bridge, which I don’t think I have actually been to.

Apparently Larry gets lost a lot. Larry is the star of a number of books by John Skewes, although this one is a board book from Birdhouse Kids Media and Raincoast Books. It retails for $11.99

The Science of Babies, A Little Book for big questions about bodies, birth and families

I am a big believer in children learning about their bodies and how babies are made. This board book for kids three and half goes a bit further than most books I have seen for this age, in explaining how babies are really made: “There’s more than one way. Most often it happens like this: A vagina and a penis are just the right size and shape and fit together. Just like puzzle pieces.”

I like that it often says there are various ways to do something as there are various ways to have a family. It’sa good book for the younger set. The pictures are illustrations.

This book is from Birdhouse Kids Media and Raincoast Books and retails for $14.99. The book is written by Deborah Roffman and illustrated by Frank Cable.

100 First Words for Little Canadians

What a fun picture book for little Canadians. There are a whole lot of Canadian words in there like a Jiggs dinner (I went to one once, not in Newfoundland, but in Toronto, hosted by a local church group), beaver tails and Nanaimo bars. There is, of course, a Zamboni and a hat trick, but also a hoser (ha!) and a kerfuffle (I didn’t realize this was strictly Canadian or maybe it was because it look like a hockey fight). There is an Ogopogo and a Sasquatch, Emily Carr and Carnaval.

It was fun looking through this board book by Pierre Lamielle and seeing everything Canadian and rejoicing in our uniqueness. (Sorry.)


100 First Words for Little Canadians is from Familius LLC and Raincoast Books. It retails for $14.99.

Other books I would recommend:

The Last Resort, Marissa Stapley, great summer read, but also angering and interesting
New Boy, Tracy Chevalier, super fast read, so good but that ending. I wasn’t expecting it.
Scarborough, Catherine Hernandez, interesting. I worked at the newspaper mentioned within the pages, which was kind of neat. Quick read.

Larry Loves Vancouver, The Science of Babies and 100 First Words for Little Canadians are courtesy
of Raincoast Books, while Berani is from Pajama Press for an honest review. The opinions are my own.