These Books will Inspire Kids of All Ages!

Dear Reader,

In this latest collection of children’s books you will find something for every age and taste. I have always found that good children’s books are always inspirational or educational in some way, but they are not always easy to find in the annual deluge of new titles from the publishing houses. Indeed, the number of children’s books being published grows each year, which makes it difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff. Our reviews make it easy to find the kind of book you are looking for, thanks to a dedicated team of reviewers from the University of Alberta Libraries who recommend books that are imaginative, compelling, and attractively designed.

Whether you are a parent wanting to read a good book with a child, a teenager looking for a fast-paced magical adventure, a teacher selecting picture books for a syllabus, or a young person enjoying a picture book for the first time—whoever you are—there are enough books in this issue for all of us to indulge our love of reading. Some of them, “The Last Dragonslayer”, for example, or “The Prince of Two Tribes”, feature young heroes and heroines with magical powers who embark on exciting and dangerous adventures, but there are also picture books like “Catch that Baby!” and “Red Wagon” whose gorgeous illustrations have immediate appeal to both children and adults.

Now that portable electronic devices are ubiquitous, it was only a matter of time before publishers started offering digital children’s books with interactive features and sophisticated computer animation. So it is only natural that this publication would eventually review books for children that are released in electronic formats. This issue includes a review of “The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore”, which is available on iTunes’ online store as an iPad application. This delightful animated storybook demonstrates that ebooks designed for children have tremendous potential and could easily have a transformative effect on the entire children’s book publishing industry in the not-too-distant future. We certainly look forward to reviewing more digital stories, but it is my fervent belief that there are numerous factors—emotional, aesthetic, and otherwise—that will make it difficult for electronic children’s books to completely overcome print books.

In closing, I would like to offer my heartiest congratulations to Dr Andrea Deakin, our esteemed founder, for being named one of two recipients of the 2011 Claude Aubry Award, conferred by the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) for distinguished service to the field of children’s literature.

As always, please get in touch if you have comments or questions about our publication.

Warm wishes,

Robert Desmarais
Managing Editor