Youth Book Corner: September Recommendations

Our Outreach Coordinator Leena Desai shares must-read youth books by authors participating in this year’s Vancouver Writers Fest, from October 21-27.

by Julie Flett

In this picturebook by Cree-Métis author Julie Flett, a young girl feels lonely and out of place when she moves from the country to a small town. But she forms a friendship with an elderly neighbour through a shared love of art and nature. Containing textured images of birds, flowers, art, and landscapes, this book highlights the fulfillment of intergenerational relationships and shared passions. A brief glossary and pronunciation guide to Cree-Métis words that appear in the text is provided on the copyright page. Suitable for grades 2-3. Julie Flett will be at the Festival on October 23, 2019.


The Youth of God
by Hassan Ghedi Santur

In Toronto’s Somali neighbourhood, Nuur, a sensitive and academically gifted seventeen-year-old boy negotiates perilously between the calling of his faith and his intellectual ambitions. Trying to influence him are a radical Muslim imam and a book-loving, dedicated teacher who shares his background. In The Youth of God, Hassan Ghedi Santur explores the struggle for the soul of Islam in modern times. This is Santur’s second novel, after Something Remains. Suitable for grades 2-3. Hassan Ghedi Santur will be at the Festival on October 24 and 27, 2019.


Picking Up the Pieces: Residential School Memories and the Making of the Witness Blanket
by Carey Newman and Kirstie Hudson

Inspired by the fragments of culture, language and pride left behind in the wake of Residential Schools, multidisciplinary artist and master carver Carey Newman set out to create a living piece of art, compiled of physical broken pieces that would bear eternal witness to the atrocities committed against Indigenous people in Canada. Picking Up the Pieces tells the story of the making of the Witness Blanket from conception to completion and takes readers on the journey of its creation and calls on readers of all ages to bear witness to the residential school experience. Suitable for grades 4-12. Carey Newman will be at the Festival on October 23 and 24, 2019.


Leena Desai