Ten Finalists Vie for Esteemed TD Canadian Children's Literature Awards

       Two prestigious $25,000 prizes celebrate the most distinguished
      English and French-language Canadian children's books of the year

    TORONTO, Aug. 20 /CNW/ - The Canadian Children's Book Centre (CCBC) and
TD Bank Financial Group are proud to announce the ten finalists of the 2009 TD
Canadian Children's Literature Awards for the two most distinguished books of
the year.
    The annual award which recognizes excellence in Canadian children's
literature has increased this year with $25,000 being awarded to the most
distinguished book written in English and $25,000 to the most distinguished
book written in French.
    "Reading is one of the fundamental pillars of education and learning in
this country and the talents of our Canadian authors and illustrators help to
instill a sense of curiosity and appreciation for the written word in younger
Canadians," said Scott Mullin, Vice President Government and Community
Relations, TD Bank Financial Group. "TD continues to support the children's
literature award, one that is among Canada's most prestigious literary prizes
with the goal to inspire artists to be guided by their passions and author
children's books that continue to touch us all."
    This year's nominated titles will captivate the hearts and imaginations
of children and adults everywhere. Among the finalists are stories introducing
readers to daring and adventurous female heroes; to a chicken, a pig and a cow
and their new drooly friend; to tragic yet hopeful experiences of two siblings
in a residential school; to a remarkable stuffed toy and the spoiled child who
rejects him; and to 14-year-old Kit and her fight for survival during the
Great Hunger.
    "The love of reading is a gift and without the talents of Canadian
authors and illustrators to inspire it, fostering this love would prove to be
very difficult," said Charlotte Teeple, Executive Director, The Canadian
Children's Book Centre. "At the Canadian Children's Book Centre we encourage
the reading, writing and illustrating of Canadian books for young readers, and
what better way to do that than to recognize rising authors and illustrators
with a prestigious TD Canadian Children's Literature Award. Thanks to the
generosity of TD, we are able to continue to recognize our talented Canadian
children's authors in a very meaningful way."
    As a result of a new partnership with Toronto's International Festival of
Authors (IFOA), readings from this year's TD Canadian Children's Literature
Award shortlisted titles will be presented at IFOA on Saturday, October 24,
2009. For more information, visit www.readings.org.
    All books, in any genre, written by a Canadian for children ages one
through 12 were eligible for the awards. Entries were judged on the quality of
the text and illustrations and the book's overall contribution to literature.
The winner of the English-language award will be announced at an
invitation-only gala at The Carlu in Toronto on November 24, 2009.

    The English-language finalists for the 2009 TD Canadian Children's
    Literature Award, with jury comments, are as follows:

    Death in the Air
    (The Boy Sherlock Holmes, His Second Case)
    Written by Shane Peacock
    Tundra Books
    for ages 10-12

    "This second installment of 'The Boy Sherlock Holmes' series maintains
    tension from beginning to end... Pacing is superb, great character
    development, breath-taking from beginning to end."

    Written by Alma Fullerton
    Fitzhenry & Whiteside
    for ages 10-12

    "In this free verse novel, Alma Fullerton's beautifully poetic language
    recreates the brutal reality of the lives of two Guatemala City's dump
    dwelling brothers, Libertad and Julio... An unforgettable story."

    Shin-chi's Canoe
    Written by Nicola I. Campbell
    Illustrated by Kim LaFave
    Groundwood Books
    for ages 5-8

    "In this sequel to Shi-shi-etko, spare text and evocative artwork
    powerfully present a deeply moving story of longing and attachment about
    two Aboriginal children at a residential school."

    Written by Cary Fagan
    Illustrated by Nicolas Debon
    Tundra Books
    for ages 5-8

    "A fresh and charming book about a spoiled child and an unloved toy
    thrown out the window... The quirky gouache and collage illustrations
    offer a sense of speed and uncanny stories on each floor... A book to
    fall for."

    Word Nerd
    Written by Susin Nielsen
    Tundra Books
    for ages 10-12

    "A humourous and cleverly written novel with likeable, unusual characters
    from the wrong side of the tracks... An original novel about regaining
    self confidence and trust."

    2009 JURY MEMBERS: Nancy Cohen, Children's Librarian, Moncton Public
    Library; Theo Heras, author and Children's Literature Specialist, Lillian
    H. Smith Library, Toronto Public Library; Dr. Dave Jenkinson, Professor
    Emeritus, Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba; Dr. Ron Jobe,
    Professor Emeritus, Department of Language and Literacy Education,
    Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia; Josiane Polidori,
    Head, Children's Literature, Library and Archives Canada.

    The French-language finalists for the 2009 TD Canadian Children's
    Literature Award, are as follows:

    Chère Traudi
    Written and illustrated by Anne Villeneuve
    Editions Les 400 coups
    for ages 9 and up

    La Clé
    Written by Angèle Delaunois
    Illustrated by Christine Delezenne
    Editions de l'Isatis
    for ages 10 and up

    L'Etoile de Sarajevo
    Written by Jacques Pasquet
    Illustrated by Pierre Pratt
    Editions Dominique et compagnie
    for ages 8 and up

    Le Nouveau parapluie de Floup
    Written by Carole Tremblay
    Illustrated by Steve Beshwaty
    Editions Imagine
    for 18 months and up

    La Vraie histoire de Léo Pointu
    Written and illustrated by Rogé
    Editions Dominique et compagnie
    for ages 4 and up

    2009 JURY MEMBERS: Suzie Cote, Children's Books Consultant; Todd Kyle,
    Children's Book Specialist and Branch Manager, Mississauga Library
    System; Brigitte Moreau, Manager, Monet Bookstore; Manon Richer,
    university lecturer on children's books; Benoit St-Aubin, bookseller.

    The winner of the French-language award will be announced at an
invitation-only gala at the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal on
November 3, 2009.

    About The Canadian Children's Book Centre
    The Canadian Children's Book Centre is a national, not-for-profit
organization and registered charity founded in 1976 to promote, support and
encourage the reading, writing and illustrating of Canadian books for children
and teens. With book collections, programs and services and extensive
resources in five cities across Canada, the CCBC is a treasure-trove for
anyone interested in Canadian books for young readers. For more information,
please visit www.bookcentre.ca.

    TD Community Giving: Making a Difference Together
    Children's health, literacy and education, and the environment are the
three main areas of focus for TD's community giving. Flagship programs within
these areas include: TD Children's Hospital Fund; TD Friends of the
Environment Foundation; TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup; TD Canadian
Children's Book Week; TD Canada Trust Scholarships for Community Leadership;
and the TD Summer Reading Club. With support from customers and employees, TD
is involved with a host of national, regional and local causes benefiting
diversity, arts and culture and other community programs. In 2008, TD donated
$35 million to more than 2,100 organizations across Canada.

For further information:

For further information: Charlotte Teeple, Executive Director, The
Canadian Children's Book Centre, (416) 975-0010, charlotte@bookcentre.ca;
Gregory Harrison, TD Bank Financial Group, (416) 308-8597,
gregory.harrison@td.com; Elynn Wareham, GCI Group on behalf of TD and the
CCBC, (416) 486-5921, elynn.wareham@gcigroup.com

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