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Alan Neal

Alan Neal is a Canadian journalist and playwright whose first project involving the creatures of Inuit myth was on a film Neil Christopher was making in Iqaluit years ago about the demon Mahaha. Alan’s tasks then included coaching child actors, wrangling dogs, and performing the role of Grip #3. Although the film never did get finished, Alan fell in love with both the stories and the beauty of Iqaluit. He currently hosts the CBC radio program All in a Day in Ottawa and has also hosted the programs Ontario Today, Bandwidth, and Fuse.

Ava and the Little Folk
Neil Christopher
Alan Neal
Jonathan Wright
Format: Hardcover
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; Inuit;
Grade Levels: 1; 2; 3;

The most magical things can come in tiny packages! In the Arctic, tales of tiny people who live on the land abound. This children's story follows the adventures of an orphan named Ava who is left to fend for himself by the adults in his village. One day, cold and alone, Ava stumbles upon a group of magical dwarves who finally show him how it feels to have a home of his own.

"Christopher, a researcher and publisher of Inuit legends and history, and Neal, a Canadian journalist, team up for a relatively lengthy, original story incorporating traditional Inuit characters and setting. Little Ava is alone and unwanted, an outcast orphan in his Arctic village. One day, he stumbles on a tiny, dwarflike man who takes Ava home to his group of family and friends (including sled dogs the size of squirrels). Ava learns that in this new world, time, size and shape can shift, according to one’s own perceptions and inner strength. He proves himself a worthy hunter, accepts the love and respect of his new family, and finds that he is now the same size as the tiny people, the Inugarulligaarjuit. Dreamy watercolor illustrations in muted tones show Ava’s growth from a cowering child to a brave and strong boy who can fight a lemming or a bear. The story is long for the picture-book format, but children who enjoy fairy and folk tales will find the story of Ava an unusual and compelling one. (author’s note, glossary, pronunciation guide) (Picture book. 6-9)" - Kirkus Review

Additional Information
32 pages | 8.50" x 8.50"

Authentic Canadian Content

Nunavummi Reading Series: Joannie and the Vikings
Alan Neal
Amanda Sandland
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; Inuit;
Grade Levels: 3; 4; 5;

While digging for clams, Joannie finds a strange artifact made of whale bone. Suddenly, he finds himself transported a thousand years in the past, when Vikings visited Nunavut!

This time-travel story will introduce readers to the science fiction genre and teach them about ancient Northern history.

Educator Information 
This book is part of the Nunavummi Reading Series, a Nunavut-developed series that supports literacy learning while teaching readers about the people, traditions, and environment of the Canadian Arctic.  It is a Level 16 book in the series. 

Nunavummi Reading Series books have also been officially levelled using the Fountas & Pinnell Text Level Gradient™ Levelling System. This book's F&P Level is V.

Curriculum Connections: Language and literacy; Diversity; Indigenous Perspectives; Roles and responsibilities; History; Heritage.

Recommended for ages 8-10.

Additional Information 
40 pages | 6.00" x 8.00"

Authentic Canadian Content


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