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The top books chosen by Canadian library staff

October 2021 Adult List

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  1. The Last Guest
    by Tess Little
    Ballantine Books
    Oct 05, 2021
    FICTION / Thrillers / Psychological
    Hardcover

    Description

    A glamorous birthday dinner in the Hollywood Hills ends with the famous host dead and every guest under suspicion in this dark, cinematic suspense debut reminiscent of an Agatha Christie page-turner crossed with David Lynch's Mulholland Drive.

    “A sharp, unshrinking look at the costs of submission—to power and control, to ambition and desire, even to the wish to protect those we love by forcing memory underground.”—Paula McLain, author of The Paris Wife and When the Stars Go Dark

    When Elspeth Bell attends the fiftieth birthday party of her ex-husband, Richard Bryant, the Hollywood director who launched her acting career, all she wants is to pass unnoticed through the glamorous crowd in his sprawling Los Angeles mansion. Instead, there are only seven other guests—and Richard's pet octopus, Persephone, watching over them from her tank as the intimate party grows more surreal (and rowdy) by the hour. Come morning, Richard is dead—and all of the guests are suspects.

    In the weeks that follow, each guest comes under suspicion: the school friend, the studio producer, the actress, the actor, the new partner, the manager, the cinematographer, and even Elspeth herself. What starts out as a locked-room mystery soon reveals itself to be much more complicated, as dark stories from Richard's past surface, colliding with memories of their marriage that Elspeth vowed never to revisit. She begins to wonder not just who killed Richard, but why these eight guests were invited—and what sort of man would desire to possess a creature as mysterious and unsettling as Persephone.

    The Last Guest is a stylish exploration of power—the power of memory, the power of perception, the power of one person over another.
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  2. The Apollo Murders
    by Chris Hadfield 'Canada'
    Random House Canada
    Oct 12, 2021
    FICTION / Action & Adventure
    Hardcover

    Description

    The #1 bestselling Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield is back with an exceptional Cold War thriller from the dark heart of the Space Race.

    1973. A final, top-secret mission to the Moon. Three astronauts in a tiny module, a quarter of a million miles from home. A quarter of a million miles from help.

    As Russian and American crews sprint for a secret bounty hidden away on the lunar surface, old rivalries blossom and the political stakes are stretched to breaking point back on Earth. Houston flight controller Kazimieras "Kaz" Zemeckis must do all he can to keep the NASA crew together, while staying one step ahead of his Soviet rivals. But not everyone on board Apollo 18 is quite who they appear to be.

    Full of the fascinating technical detail that fans of The Martian loved, and reminiscent of the thrilling claustrophobia, twists and tension of The Hunt for Red October, The Apollo Murders puts you right there in the moment. Experience the fierce G-forces of launch, the frozen loneliness of Space and the fear of holding on to the outside of a spacecraft orbiting the Earth at 17,000 miles per hour, as told by a former Commander of the International Space Station who has done all of those things in real life.

    Strap in and count down for the ride of a lifetime.
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  3. The Holiday Swap
    by Maggie Knox 'Canada'
    Viking
    Oct 05, 2021
    FICTION / Women
    Paperback

    Description

    "An utterly adorable, pitch-perfect romance with just the right amount of Christmas cheer. The Holiday Swap is a pure delight, I couldn’t stop from smiling."-- Taylor Jenkins Reid, NYT bestselling author of Daisy Jones & The Six

    A feel-good, holiday-themed romantic comedy about identical twins who switch lives in the days leading up to Christmas.


    All they want for Christmas is a different life.

    When chef Charlie Goodwin gets hit on the head on the L.A. set of her reality baking show, she loses a lot more than consciousness; she also loses her ability to taste and smell--both critical to her success as show judge. Meanwhile, Charlie's identical twin, Cass, is frantically trying to hold her own life together back in their quaint mountain hometown while running the family's bustling bakery and dealing with her ex, who won't get the memo that they're over.

    With only days until Christmas, a desperate Charlie asks Cass to do something they haven't done since they were kids: switch places. Looking for her own escape from reality, Cass agrees. But temporarily trading lives proves more complicated than they imagined, especially when rugged firefighter Jake Greenman and gorgeous physician assistant Miguel Rodriguez are thrown into the mix. Will the twins' identity swap be a recipe for disaster, or does it have all the right ingredients for getting their lives back on track?
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  4. The Death of Jane Lawrence
    by Caitlin Starling
    St. Martin's Press
    Oct 05, 2021
    FICTION / Horror
    Hardcover

    Description

    From the Bram Stoker-nominated author ofThe Luminous Dead comes a gothic fantasy horror--The Death of Jane Lawrence.

    “Intense and amazing! It’s likeJonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell meetsMexican Gothic meetsCrimson Peak.” —BookRiot

    Practical, unassuming Jane Shoringfield has done the calculations, and decided that the most secure path forward is this: a husband, in a marriage of convenience, who will allow her to remain independent and occupied with meaningful work. Her first choice, the dashing but reclusive doctor Augustine Lawrence, agrees to her proposal with only one condition: that she must never visit Lindridge Hall, his crumbling family manor outside of town.

    Yet on their wedding night, an accident strands her at his door in a pitch-black rainstorm, and she finds him changed. Gone is the bold, courageous surgeon, and in his place is a terrified, paranoid man—one who cannot tell reality from nightmare, and fears Jane is an apparition, come to haunt him. By morning, Augustine is himself again, but Jane knows something is deeply wrong at Lindridge Hall, and with the man she has so hastily bound her safety to.

    Set in a dark-mirror version of post-war England, Caitlin Starling crafts a new kind of gothic horror from the bones of the beloved canon. ThisCrimson Peak-inspired story assembles, then upends, every expectation set in place by Shirley Jackson andRebecca, and will leave readers shaken, desperate to begin again as soon as they are finished.

    “Don’t read this one alone at night; Caitlin Starling has done it again. Unsettling, atmospheric, and downright brutal at times,The Death of Jane Lawrence will continue to haunt you long after you leave Lindridge Hall…if the house lets you leave, that is.” —Genevieve Gornichec, author ofThe Witch’s Heart

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  5. Mooncakes and Milk Bread
    by Kristina Cho
    Harper Horizon
    Oct 12, 2021
    COOKING / Regional & Ethnic / Chinese
    Hardcover

    Description

    In Mooncakes & Milk Bread, food blogger Kristina Cho (eatchofood.com) introduces readers to Chinese bakery cooking with fresh, uncomplicated interpretations of classic recipes for the modern baker.

    Inside you’ll find sweet and savory baked buns, steamed buns, Chinese breads, unique cookies, whimsical cakes, juicy dumplings, Chinese breakfast dishes, and drinks. Recipes for steamed BBQ pork buns, pineapple buns with a thick slice of butter, silky smooth milk tea, and chocolate Swiss rolls all make an appearance--because a book about Chinese bakeries wouldn’t be complete without them!

    Kristina teaches you to whip up these delicacies like a pro, including how to

    • Knead dough without a stand mixer
    • Avoid collapsed steamed buns
    • Infuse creams and custards with aromatic tea flavors
    • Mix the most workable dumpling dough
    • Pleat dumplings like an Asian grandma

    This is the first book to exclusively focus on Chinese bakeries and cafes, but it isn’t just for those nostalgic for Chinese bakeshop foods--it’s for all home bakers who want exciting new recipes to add to their repertoires.

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  6. The Corpse Flower
    by Anne Mette Hancock
    Crooked Lane Books
    Oct 12, 2021
    FICTION / Thrillers / Psychological
    Hardcover

    Description

    The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo meets Sharp Objects in this internationally bestselling psychological thriller, for fans of Jo Nesbø and Henning Mankell, now for the first time in English.


    Danish journalist Heloise Kaldan is in the middle of a nightmare. One of her sources has been caught lying, and she could lose her job over it. Then she receives the first in a series of cryptic and unsettling letters from a woman named Anna Kiel.

    Wanted in connection with the fatal stabbing of a young lawyer three years earlier, Anna hasn't been seen by anyone since she left the crime scene covered in blood. The police think she's fled the country until homicide detective Erik Scháfer comes up with a lead after the reporter who originally wrote about the case is found murdered in his apartment. Has Anna Kiel struck again, or is there more than one killer at large? And why does every clue point directly to Heloise Kaldan?

    Meanwhile, the letters keep coming, and they hint at a connection between Anna and Heloise. As Heloise starts digging deeper, she realizes that to tell Anna's story she will have to revisit the darkest parts of her own past--confronting someone she swore she'd never see again.

    The Corpse Flower is the first in the #1 bestselling Danish crime series, the Kaldan and Scháfer mysteries.
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  7. Truth or Dare
    by M. J. Arlidge
    Orion
    Oct 19, 2021
    FICTION / Thrillers / Crime
    Hardcover

    Description

    DO YOU WANT TO PLAY THE GAME?

    THE BRAND NEW THRILLER FROM THE MIND OF MILLION-COPY BESTSELLER M. J. ARLIDGE

    A crimewave sweeps through the city and no-one is safe. An arson at the docks. A carjacking gone wrong. A murder in a country park. What connects all these crimes without causes, which leave no clues?

    Detective Inspector Helen Grace faces the rising tide of cases which threatens to drown the city. But each crime is just a piece of a puzzle which is falling into place.

    And when it becomes clear just how twisted and ingenious this web of crime is, D.I. Grace will realise that it may be impossible to stop it . . .

    THE BEST BOOK YET FROM THE MASTER OF THE KILLER THRILLER.

    * * * * *


    PRAISE FOR M. J. ARLIDGE AND THE HELEN GRACE THRILLERS

    'Chilling' THE TIMES

    'Gripping' SUNDAY MIRROR

    'Addictive' EXPRESS

    'Truly excellent' THE SUN

    'Amazing' RICHARD MADELEY

    'Mesmerizing' LISA GARDNER

    'Chills to the bone' DAILY MAIL

    'This is going to be as big as Jo Nesbo' JUDY FINNIGAN

    'Helen Grace is one of the greatest heroes to come along in years' JEFFERY DEAVER

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  8. Beat Bobby Flay
    by Bobby Flay
    Clarkson Potter
    Oct 05, 2021
    COOKING / Courses & Dishes / General
    Hardcover

    Description

    Think you can cook better than Bobby Flay? Put your kitchen skills to the test and cook alongside Bobby and his competitors with more than 100 recipes from the hit show.

    Beat Bobby Flay brings the excitement of the Food Network show stage into your home kitchen, with more than 100 recipes for breakfast and brunch, weeknight-worthy dinners, and stunning desserts that make every meal a winner. Bobby’s best recipes and other favorites from the show make appearances, from Seafood Fra Diavolo with Saffron Fettuccine (handmade pasta always wins the judges’ hearts) to Mushroom and Goat Cheese Chiles Rellenos (the secret: crispy Brussels sprout leaves) and Bittersweet Chocolate Soufflé. Sprinkled throughout Bobby’s recipes are behind-the-scenes stories of fan-favorite moments, tips to help you “beat the clock” when you’re pressed for time, and pro-chef suggestions for everything from meal prep to garnish (when in doubt, add anchovy breadcrumbs!).

    Alongside Bobby’s favorites are a wealth of recipes from his competitors on the show who beat Bobby Flay, including Alex Guarnaschelli’s Lobster Newberg, Marcus Samuelsson’s Doro Wat (Ethiopian chicken stew), and Shelby Sieg’s Lemon-Thyme Olive Oil Cake. The ultimate companion cookbook to one of the country’s favorite Food Network shows, Beat Bobby Flay also features beautiful, all-new color food photography as well as shots from everyone’s favorite episodes. With Bobby’s expertise and tried-and-true tips helping you stay in it to win it, you’ll be ready to crush any competition that comes your way!
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  9. Island Eats
    by Dawn Postnikoff 'Canada'
    Figure 1 Publishing
    Oct 19, 2021
    COOKING / Individual Chefs & Restaurants
    Hardcover

    Description

    Plenty of people talk about farm-to-table dining these days. But on Vancouver Island and the surrounding Gulf Islands, it?s truly a way of life. And why not, when there is so much abundance to choose from? From the Comox Valley to the Cowichan to Salt Spring Island, you?ll find everything from truffles to tea, passionfruit to Pinot Noir, water buffalo to the most delicately briny oysters. Island Eats is a tribute to the vibrant food culture of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands and the celebration of a passionate culinary community built on the edge of a continent. Whether they?re shucking oysters and rolling pasta just for you, pouring you a glass of local wine, telling you about the best surf beach or hiking trail or the cool new craft brewery in town, the chefs, mixologists, and food artisans profiled in this cookbook have contributed to the heartfelt food traditions of a rare culinary destination. Featuring more than 80 signature dishes, from a classic salmon chowder to island-foraged chantarelle risotto, apple pie waffles to bannock ice-cream sandwich, this inspired collection boasts locally-minded, soul-satisfying dishes that readers will want to make again and again.
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  10. The Final Chapter
    by Jerome Loubry
    Hodder
    Dec 07, 2021
    FICTION / Mystery & Detective / International Crime & Mystery
    Paperback

    Description

    Whatever you do, DON'T give away that ending...

    "Terribly addictive" * * * * *

    Three good friends.

    One tragic summer.
    A book that tells it all.

    "A tremendously compelling page-turner" * * * * *

    When little Julie goes missing in summer 1986, David and Samuel share the terrible secret of her disappearance. Thirty years later, David has become a famous author and Samuel his publisher. Both receive identical manuscript chapters telling the story of what really happened that tragic summer.

    Chapter after chapter, the author reveals their darkest secrets. They know the book will end with its 12th chapter. A race against time begins: will David and Samuel expose the mysterious author's identity before he exposes them? And did one of them kill Julie?

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September & October 2021 Juvenile and Young Adult List

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  1. Living With Viola
    by Rosena Fung 'Canada'
    Annick Press
    Oct 26, 2021
    JUVENILE FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / General
    Lexile measure HL310L
    Hardcover

    Description

    Heartbreakingly honest and quietly funny, this graphic novel from a debut creator is a refreshingly real exploration of mental health, cultural differences, and the trials of middle school.

    Livy is already having trouble fitting in as the new girl at school—and then there’s Viola. Viola is Livy’s anxiety brought to life, a shadowy twin that only Livy can see or hear. Livy tries to push back against Viola’s relentless judgment, but nothing seems to work until she strikes up new friendships at school. Livy hopes that Viola’s days are numbered. But when tensions arise both at home and at school, Viola rears her head stronger than ever. Only when Livy learns how to ask for help and face her anxiety does she finally figure out living with Viola.

    Rosena Fung draws on her own early experiences with anxiety and the pressures of growing up as the child of Chinese immigrant parents to craft a charming, deeply personal story that combines the poignancy of Raina Telgemeier’s Guts with the wacky humor of Lumberjanes. Exuberant, colorful art brings Livy’s rich imaginative world—filled with everything from sentient dumplings to flying unicorns—to life on the page.

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  2. Julia's House Goes Home
    by Ben Hatke
    First Second
    Oct 19, 2021
    JUVENILE FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / Fantasy
    Hardcover

    Description

    Julia and her house full of fantastic friends are on the move, from #1New York Times-bestselling author Ben Hatke.

    Julia's flying house has come down to earth...and sprouted legs! Now it roams the landscape looking for the perfect spot to settle down. But just as Julia spots the Perfect Spot, off in the distance—her walking house trips! It tumbles down a steep mountain side, and Julia and her creatures are scattered across the hills while her runaway home continues rolling off on an adventure of its own. Now it's up to Julia to gather up her found family and track down her house, and maybe find that Perfect Spot once and for all.

    With surprises around every corner and new creatures galore, master storyteller Ben Hatke weaves a moving and satisfying final episode for Julia's House, completing the trilogy of three picture books.

    MORE
  3. Set Your Alarm, Sloth!: More Advice for Troubled Animals from Dr. Glider
    by Jess Keating 'Canada'
    Orchard Books
    Sep 28, 2021
    JUVENILE NONFICTION / Animals / General
    Hardcover

    Description

    Have fun learning about some odd but true animal facts with Dr. Sugar Glider and her patients!

    Zoë Zebra is troubled. Why do flies crash into her? A visit from Dr. Glider can solve the mystery. Our gliding doctor also helps a sloth stay awake, a sneezing iguana, a leaderless clownfish, a lovesick egret, and many more creatures with some peculiar problems.

    This hilarious and fun picture book by author and zoologist Jess Keating (Pink Is for Blobfish) and New York Times bestselling illustrator Pete Oswald (The Couch Potato) is packed with entertaining animal stories and unbelievable true facts on every page that are sure to fascinate curious young readers. Scientific vocabulary appears throughout each medical adventure, and there's a glossary and a list of species at the end.

    And for more laughter and nonfiction fun, read about the weird but true problems among Dr. Glider's first group of patients in Eat Your Rocks, Croc!

    MORE
  4. Within These Wicked Walls
    by Lauren Blackwood
    Wednesday Books
    Oct 19, 2021
    YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Fantasy / Historical
    Hardcover

    Description

    "An intricate magic system, a grimly humorous Black heroine, AND a heart-thumping romance? This book leaves nothing wanting." -Jordan Ifueko,New York Timesbestselling author ofRaybearer

    What the heart desires, the house destroys...

    Andromeda is a debtera—an exorcist hired to cleanse households of the Evil Eye. Shewould be hired, that is, if her mentor hadn’t thrown her out before she could earn her license. Now her only hope of steady work is to find a Patron—a rich, well-connected individual who will vouch for her abilities.

    When a handsome young heir named Magnus Rochester reaches out to hire her, she takes the job without question. Never mind that he’s rude and demanding and eccentric, that the contract comes with a number of outlandish rules… and that almost a dozen debtera had quit before her. If Andromeda wants to earn a living, she has no choice.

    But she quickly realizes this is a job like no other, with horrifying manifestations at every turn, and that Magnus is hiding far more than she has been trained for. Death is the most likely outcome if she stays, the reason every debtera before her quit. But leaving Magnus to live out his curse alone isn’t an option because—heaven help her—she’s fallen for him.

    Stunningly romantic, Lauren Blackwood's heartstopping debut,Within These Wicked Walls,ushers in an exciting new fantasy voice.

    "Fierce, eerie and heartfelt... a romantic and spine-chilling reimagining of a classic. I loved every creepy, swoon-worthy moment of it." - Laura E. Weymouth, author ofThe Light Between Worlds

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  5. Unicorn Night
    by Diana Murray
    Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
    Sep 07, 2021
    JUVENILE FICTION / Animals / Dragons, Unicorns & Mythical
    Hardcover

    Description

    Hooray! Hooray! It's Unicorn Night! Thelma the Unicorn meets Uni the Unicorn in this rainbow-packed book guaranteed for bedtime fun! This clever, colorful, and over-the-top picture book about unicorns and unique-corns is a MUST for all unicorn lovers!

    Unicorns love to prance and dance the day away. But it's exhausting! Now it's time for unicorns to brush their manes, fluff their pillows, and sing the unicorn lullaby in this companion to the best-selling Unicorn Day.

    Fuzzy jammies, flower beds,
    Sweet dreams swirling in our heads,

    Neigh, neigh, neigh,
    Played all day,
    Time to sleep the night away!

    The Perfect gift if you're looking for:
  6. A fun-filled bedtime story
  7. Colorful, beautiful animal stories
  8. Children's books about unicorns
  9. Unicorn gifts for little girls and boys
  10. MORE
  11. There’s a Ghost in this House
    by Oliver Jeffers
    HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks
    Oct 05, 2021
    JUVENILE FICTION / Bedtime & Dreams
    Hardcover

    Description

    A captivating new picture book with interactive transparent pages, from world-renowned artist Oliver Jeffers.

    Hello, come in.
    Maybe you can help me?

    A young girl lives in a haunted house, but has never seen a ghost. Are they white with holes for eyes? Are they hard to see? She’d love to know! Step inside and turn the transparent pages to help her on an entertaining ghost hunt, from behind the sofa, right up to the attic. With lots of friendly ghost surprises and incredible mixed media illustrations, this unique and funny book will entertain young readers over and over again!

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  12. Santa Jaws
    by Bridget Heos
    Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
    Oct 26, 2021
    JUVENILE FICTION / Holidays & Celebrations / Christmas & Advent
    Hardcover

    Description

    While kids write notes to Santa Claus, / Sharks line up for Santa Jaws. / They tell him all their Christmas wishes. / Santa thinks they sound delicious!

    With bouncy, delightful rhymes,Santa Jawscelebrates Christmas under the sea. Every year, Santa Jaws delivers presents to his fellow sharks, spreading cheer wherever he goes. Elfin sharks make toys, horn sharks trim the Christmas kelp, and cookiecutter sharks make sure Santa doesn't go hungry. Get ready for a ride on Santa's sled (pulled, of course, by hammerheads) in this joyful holiday tale!

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  13. Hunting by Stars
    by Cherie Dimaline 'Canada'
    Penguin Teen
    Oct 19, 2021
    YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Dystopian
    Paperback

    Description

    The thrilling follow-up to the bestselling, award-winning novel The Marrow Thieves, about a dystopian world where the Indigenous people of North America are being hunted for their bone marrow and ability to dream.

    Years ago, when plagues and natural disasters killed millions of people, much of the world stopped dreaming. Without dreams, people are haunted, sick, mad, unable to rebuild. The government soon finds that the Indigenous people of North America have retained their dreams, an ability rumored to be housed in the very marrow of their bones. Soon, residential schools pop up—or are re-opened—across the land to bring in the dreamers and harvest their dreams.

    Seventeen-year-old French lost his family to these schools and has spent the years since heading north with his new found family: a group of other dreamers, who, like him, are trying to build and thrive as a community. But then French wakes up in a pitch-black room, locked in and alone for the first time in years, and he knows immediately where he is—and what it will take to escape.

    Meanwhile, out in the world, his found family searches for him and dodges new dangers—school Recruiters, a blood cult, even the land itself. When their paths finally collide, French must decide how far he is willing to go—and how many loved ones is he willing to betray—in order to survive. This engrossing, action-packed, deftly-drawn novel expands on the world of Cherie Dimaline’s award-winning The Marrow Thieves, and it will haunt readers long after they’ve turned the final page.
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  14. Chaiwala!
    by Priti Birla Maheshwari 'Canada'
    Owlkids
    Oct 15, 2021
    JUVENILE FICTION / Cooking & Food
    Fountas & Pinnell Text Level Gradient J, Lexile measure AD550L, Reading Recovery Level 18
    Hardcover

    Description

    A sensory celebration of family, food, and culture

    When their train makes a 10-minute stop at the station in Jaipur, a young girl and her mother hurry to get in line for a cup of chai. While the girl waits for her mug of milky spiced tea, readers are treated to the sights, sounds, and smells of the Chaiwala’s cart. The aroma of ginger, cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon sticks swirls in the air. Tea leaves rustle, milk bubbles, and the hot drink is poured back and forth until—clink!—the cups are filled and placed on the stand. With a biscuit and a rusk added to their order, it’s time to find a spot to sit and enjoy!

    Inspired by the author’s childhood visits to India, Chaiwala! celebrates the pleasures of taking time for food, family, and tradition—even for a brief moment. Illustrated in lively cut-paper collages and filled with scrumptious sensory details, this book is just like a cup of chai—warm, comforting, and good to the last drop.
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  15. The Wolf Mother
    by Hetxw’ms Gyetxw Brett D. Huson 'Canada'
    HighWater Press
    Sep 28, 2021
    JUVENILE NONFICTION / People & Places / Canada / Indigenous
    Hardcover

    Description

    Follow along as award-winning author Hetxw’ms Gyetxw (Brett D. Huson) introduces young readers to a pack of grey wolves. New pups have just begun to open their eyes, one of which is a striking black female. Every day, her ears grow larger, her eyesight gets sharper, and her legs stretch farther. As she learns to hunt, play, and run with her pack, instinct pulls her to explore beyond her home territory. Will the young wolf’s bold spirit help her find a new pack of her very own?

    Learn about the life cycle of these magnificent canines, the traditions of the Gitxsan, and how grey wolves contribute to the health of their entire ecosystem.

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