Friday, October 30, 2009

Fall Means Frankfurt!

Annick once again exhibited at the annual Frankfurt Book Fair, the largest international rights fair in the world. We meet with foreign publishers, agents, and scouts to introduce our fabulous list of upcoming spring '10 books and present new and recent releases. The aim is to sell rights so these books will be published in other countries and languages. Above is a photo of our very beautiful booth, featuring one of the highlights of the fair: a provocative new YA fiction series called Single Voice. Watch for this in stores in February '10!

We also hosted a lovely reception for the foreign publishers and agents of The Bite of the Mango, Mariatu Kamara's moving memoir about losing her hands in the civil war in Sierra Leone and her courageous accomplishments to date: UNICEF Special Representative, founder of The Mariatu Foundation, college student, and public speaker. Mariatu and co-author Susan McClelland embark on a five-country tour in Europe in November to launch some of these foreign editions. Stay tuned for more on that soon...!

Frankfurt is not only about trying to sell our books, however. We also attend the fair in the hopes of acquiring for publication in North America exceptional books from Australia, France, Germany, The Netherlands, and other places. There's so much to choose from.

The excitement of Frankfurt or any international rights fair is found in a synergy, a connection with someone from across the globe who shares the same literary sensibilities. Books really do bridge cultures!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Fall Wrap-Up

As we head deeper into fall, things are definitely getting busy. The good news is there are lots of great events going on in the book world. Even if you can't attend in person, browsing through the programs might uncover some great new authors!

Friday, October 16, 2009

International Festival of Authors: Oct. 21-31, 2009

(Image courtesy Authors at Harbourfront Centre from their Flickr stream)

Next week kicks off the 30th Anniversary of the International Festival of Authors. The festival runs from October 21 to 31 at Toronto's Harbourfront Centre, and this year's theme is "Writing Scotland." Famous Scottish poet Robert Burns was born in 1759, so 2009 marks the 250th anniversary of his birth. Click here for a list of Scotland-related readings and events!

Here are some highlights for kidlit fans:

Saturday, October 24

Tuesday, October 27

Thursday, October 29

Friday, October 30

You can see a PDF of the complete schedule here and purchase tickets here. If you're on Twitter, you can follow @IFOA for extra news, updates, and more.

Monday, October 5, 2009

TD National Reading Summit: Nov. 12 & 13, 2009

We're pretty excited about the upcoming TD National Reading Summit: Reading and Democracy (Nov. 12-13, 2009). The summit aims to develop a blueprint for a Canadian national reading strategy, and will bring together writers, educators, publishers, librarians, academics, researchers, business leaders, public officials, and youth.

Annick's director, Rick Wilks, has this to say about the importance of the summit:

Many of us read for information and to accumulate knowledge - more and more this describes reading habits in our culture. But I'm concerned that we're collectively losing track of a profoundly significant benefit: the pathways that reading opens to help us make sense of our lives within the world around us. Simply put, reading better equips us to navigate personal, political and societal challenges. Reading directly connects with our ability to develop the deep wisdom necessary to make appropriate choices and to more successfully decode the array of possibilities we have to sort through. So beyond the pure pleasures to be derived from a book, learning to think more clearly and critically enhances the quality of our lives and relationships. Ultimately we are a more engaged citizenry, coming to realize that reading in its most encompassing sense is of the essence in our civil society.
A number of great speakers from around the world will be presenting, including Ana Maria Machado (Brazil), Ingrid Bon (Netherlands), Tom King (Canada), Charles Pascal (Canada), Cory Doctorow (Canada/UK) and Elisa Bonilla (Mexico). For a full list of speakers, program information, and registration details, visit

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Cybils Awards Nominations Are Open

Do you have a favorite kid's book that you just have to tell the world about? Do you lurk in your local bookstore, waiting for an unsuspecting parent to muse, for example, "I wonder what would be good for an eight-year-old who likes dragons..." just so you can jump out and place the perfect book in their hands? If so, why not nominate your cherished book for a Cybils award?

The nomination form is here, and nominations close on October 15. Any book you nominate must have been published between last year's contest and this year's: i.e., between Oct. 16 2008 and Oct. 15 2009. For more information on the judging process, check out the Cybils website!

Here are the categories:

  • Easy Readers and Short Chapter Books
  • Fantasy and Science Fiction (middle/elementary)
  • Fantasy and Science Fiction (teen)
  • Fiction Picture Books
  • Graphic Novels (middle/elementary)
  • Graphic Novels (teen)
  • Middle Grade Fiction
  • Non-Fiction Picture Books
  • Non-Fiction (middle/teen)
  • Poetry
  • Young Adult Fiction
I'm looking forward to seeing which books for kids and young adults emerge as the "must-reads!"