IODE Violet Downey Book Award
Written by Kevin Sylvester
Published by Harper Collins Canada Ltd
Secret ballrooms, hidden artwork and unlikely friends, welcome to the Regency, where even time moves in surprising ways!
Jake Simmons hates his new home.
The Regency is nothing more than floor after floor of peeling wallpaper and faded glory. Jake misses his old life. He misses the time when his mother was employed. He misses living in a house where the wind doesn’t make the windows whistle.
Loneliness (and a trail of kittens) leads Jake to the apartment of an elderly lady, then to the bowels of the building and then to a part-time job assisting Larry the custodian. With each passing day, the building reveals more of its mysteries to Jake. The occupants grow on him too.
Unfortunately, Jake’s feeling of belonging is short-lived: the city plans to demolish the Regency. Jake feels powerless. And then fate throws him a curveball. He’s summoned to apartment 713. An apartment he’s been told is off-limits. But when he opens the door, he travels to the past!
Alongside Beth, his new friend and guide, Jake begins searching for any clue that might help him save the Regency. As their friendship blooms, the mystery around the building’s makers deepens. The Regency’s own storied past will give Jake the key to saving his own future if only he knows where to look.
Butt Sandwich & Tree
Written by Wesley King
Published by Simon and Schuster
From author Wesley King comes a tender and grounded middle grade mystery about brothers, basketball and a young boy on the autism spectrum.
Eleven-year-old Green loves his devoted older brother, Cedar, a popular basketball star, but that doesn’t mean he wants to follow in his footsteps. He doesn’t really care about sports or making friends. Still, eventually Green caves to pressure to try out for the basketball team. He may be tall like Cedar, but he’s nowhere near as skilled.
And when a confrontation with the coach spurs Green to flee the court, his flight coincides with a priceless necklace going missing making him the number one suspect. To clear Green’s name, the two brothers team up to find the necklace and along the way, they learn to appreciate their differences…and the things that bring them together.
Written by Kenneth Oppel
Published by Penguin Random House
One teen's summer job scaring tourists with ghost stories takes a terrifying turn when he accidentally summons the spirit of a dead girl and she has demands.
The award-winning author of Airborn delivers a roller-coaster ride of a story about the wakeful and wicked dead.
Rebecca Strand was just sixteen when she and her father fell to their deaths from the top of the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse in 1839. Just how they fell or were they pushed, remains a mystery. And their ghosts haunt the lighthouse to this day.
Gabe tells this story every day when he gives the ghost tour on Toronto Island. He tries to make it scary enough to satisfy the tourists, but he doesn’t actually believe in ghosts until he finds himself face to face with Rebecca Strand.
The true story of her death is far more terrifying than any ghost tale Gabe has told. Rebecca reveals that her father was a member of the Order, a secret society devoted to protecting the world from “the wakeful and wicked dead”, malevolent spirits like Viker, the ghost responsible for their deaths. But the Order has disappeared and Viker’s ghost is growing ever stronger.
Now Gabe and his friends must find a way to stop Viker before they all become lost souls.
Written by Deborah Ellis
Published by Groundwood Publishing
In this powerful collection of short stories, children around the world turn eleven and take a step into their futures. Each one is changed in ways both big and small. Annoyed at having to walk his sister’s dog on his birthday, Connor heads into an undeveloped subdivision, where he comes across chilling evidence of a stranger’s unhappiness. A girl sneaks away from her class camping trip to a local conservation area and experiences, for the first time, the terror and joy of fending for herself for the first time. Dom’s brother gives him a special crystal to boost his confidence, and the gift conjures up a child laborer from the impoverished area of Madagascar where the stones were mined. Mysterious voices at the local county fair prompt Aislynn to think twice after her older sister dumps her for her high-school buddies. While volunteering at his local soup kitchen, Len discovers that there are bigger shames than having the class bully seeing you in a hairnet. And on an historic bridge in Budapest, Lazlo’s dream of the perfect father-son birthday outing becomes a nightmare when his father introduces him to his Neo-Nazi friends. A companion to the critically acclaimed Sit.
Weird Rules to Follow
Written by Kim Spencer
Published by Orca Book Publishers
Readers will be left with a rich image of Mia’s world and the family and people that surround her as well as a strong sense of how culture and class impact people’s experiences. A touching exploration of identity and culture. Kirkus Reviews Mia knows her family is very different than her best friend's. In the 1980s, the coastal fishing town of Prince Rupert is booming. There is plenty of sockeye salmon in the nearby ocean, which means the fishermen are happy and there is plenty of work at the cannery. Eleven-year-old Mia and her best friend, Lara, have known each other since kindergarten. Like most tweens, they like to hang out and compare notes on their crushes and dream about their futures. But even though they both live in the same cul-de-sac, Mia’s life is very different from her non-Indigenous, middle-class neighbor. Lara lives with her mom, her dad and her little brother in a big house, with two cars in the drive and a view of the ocean. Mia lives in a shabby wartime house that is full of relatives, her churchgoing grandmother, binge-drinking mother and a rotating number of aunts, uncles and cousins. Even though their differences never seemed to matter to the two friends, Mia begins to notice how adults treat her differently, just because she is Indigenous. Teachers, shopkeepers, even Lara’s parents, they all seem to have decided who Mia is without getting to know her first.