Join some of Canada’s best-known children’s authors and illustrators for a fun-filled afternoon of activities for kids that celebrate Canadian books and make reading fun.
Authors include Cale Atkinson, Helaine Becker, Marina Cohen, Charis Cotter, Paul Covello, Aviaq Johnston, Kean Soo, Gordon Korman, Sabina Gibson and more.
This FREE event for families and young readers takes place at Harbourfront Centre.
Made possible by the Muller Scholastic Endowment Fund for Canadian Children’s Literature at the Toronto Public Library Foundation.
Cale Atkinson is an illustrator and animator living lakeside with his family in Kelowna, British Columbia. Believing in tea more than sleep, Cale is constantly working on numerous projects. His work can be found in children's books, including Where Oliver Fits, which he also wrote and illustrated, animated shorts, television and games. He has never haunted a potato.
Helaine Becker is the bestselling author of more than 80 books for children, including the #1 Canadian national bestseller, A Porcupine in a Pine Tree, and the picture book biography, Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13. Helaine’s award-winning nonfiction includes Worms for Breakfast, Zoobots, Hubots, Monster Science and Lines, Bars and Circles: How William Playfair Invented Graphs. She’s a multi-time winner of the Silver Birch Award and Lane Anderson Award for Science Writing.
Mr. Chris & the Gassy Bubbles is a family rock & roll band based out of Toronto & Cambridge, Ontario. The band has been delivering its unique brand of puppetry & music to children and families for just over 12 years. The band is managed and led by the band’s writer/producer Chris Torti (aka Mr. Chris). Chris is a Registered Early Childhood Education Specialist. He has spent the past 19 years working directly with children as a Kindergarten Teacher, Children’s Librarian & Child & Family Specialist. Currently, the Gassy Bubbles is touring schools, libraries, hospitals, daycare centres, community centres, fairs, festivals and many corporate venues. You can visit the Gassy Bubbles at mrchrisandthegassybubbles.com
Marina Cohen is the author of several middle-grade horror and fantasy novels including The Inn Between, The Doll's Eye, and coming in 2019, A Box of Bones. Her books have been nominated for awards in both Canada and the United States, including the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award, Ontario Library Association Silver Birch and Red Maple Awards, the Sunburst Award, Manitoba Young Reader’s Choice Award, and Rocky Mountain Book Award. She loves old castles, dusty books, and all things creepy.
Charis Cotter is an award-winning children’s author who grew up beside a cemetery and has been living with ghosts ever since. She studied English in university and went to drama school in London, England. Now she lives at the end of a road by the ocean in Newfoundland, where the landscape and plentiful supply of ghosts inspire her work. Her spooky, suspenseful novel, The Swallow: A Ghost Story, won the Violet Downey Book Award. The Painting won the Atlantic Canadian Children’s Literature Award and her most recent book, The Ghost Road, was featured on the cover of Booklist Magazine.
Paul Covello is an illustrator, a designer, and a motion-graphics artist. He lives in Toronto.
Sabina Gibson is a textile artist known for her soft sculpture design. She uses her needle and thread to tell stories, and brings her animal characters to life through the use of clever photography and delicate homemade settings. In addition to her picture books, including Little Wood: Wolfie Paints the Town and the Little Bird series written by Kirsten Hall, she also designs toys and products for The Land of Nod. She lives in Stratford, Ontario and can be found on Instagram at @mountroyalmint.
Aviaq Johnston is a young Inuk author from Igloolik, Nunavut. Her debut novel Those Who Run in the Sky was shortlisted for the 2017 Governor General's Literary Award for Young People's Literature and a 2017 Honour Book for the Burt Award for First Nations, Inuit and Métis Young Adult Literature. In 2018, she won the inaugural Indigenous Voices Award for Most Significant Work of Prose in English by an Emerging Indigenous Writer. She is also the author of the bestselling picture book, What's My Superpower? Aviaq divides her time between Iqaluit, Nunavut and Ottawa, Ontario.
Gordon Korman is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than ninety novels for kids and young adults, most recently WHATSHISFACE and SUPERGIFTED. His writing career began at the age of twelve when his grade seven English assignment became his first published novel, THIS CAN’T BE HAPPENING AT MACDONALD HALL. Four decades later, he is a full-time writer and speaker, with over thirty million copies of his novels in print in thirty-three languages. Each year he travels extensively, visiting schools and libraries, bringing his trademark humour and adventure styles to readers everywhere. A native Montrealer, he grew up in the Toronto area, and now lives with his family in Long Island, New York.
WonderPhil, an award-winning magician and entertainer who performs throughout the GTA, has been practising magic for 30 years and has been a full-time kids and family entertainer for ten years. In that time, he has performed thousands of shows for tens of thousands of people.
Mike Harding of Applefun Puppetry has been performing for nearly 20 years. He has performed thousands of shows at libraries, schools and birthday parties. Mike studied Improvisational Comedy at Second City, which adds a unique and spontaneous flavour to his shows. Applefun Puppetry puppet shows are characteristically interactive with a high degree of audience participation.
Kean Soo was born in the United Kingdom, grew up in various parts of Hong Kong and Canada, trained as an electrical engineer, and now writes and draws comics for a living. Kean is the author and illustrator of the award-winning graphic novel series Jellaby and March Grand Prix, and was also an assistant editor and contributor to the FLIGHT comic anthologies.
Little Red Theatre was established in 1988 with the mandate of bringing professional level theatre productions and workshops to young people in Canada's two official languages, English and French. The company was founded by Jody Terio, who remains as Artistic Director. Little Red Theatre produces dramatic performances of great quality theatre using a wonderful eclectic mix of puppets, songs and original musical scores, dance and audio, and visual technology. Since 1992, Little Red Theatre has been a non-profit registered charity and has financed its productions through performance fees, workshops, grants and charitable donations.