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LGBTQ

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Ghost's Journey: A Refugee Story
Authors:
Artists:
Format: Hardcover
Grade Levels: Preschool; Kindergarten; 1; 2; 3;

Journey with Ghost and her family, refugees in Canada.

This book is based on the true story of Eka, Rainer, and their cat, Ghost. When life in Indonesia becomes too dangerous for LGBTQ people, Ghost and her two dads are forced to leave their home and escape to freedom in Canada. The story is told from the perspective of Ghost. The illustrations are created from Rainer's photographs.

Reviews
“This book charmed me from the get-go. Told from a cat’s perspective, it tackles tough subjects with a light touch. The story broke my heart, then put it back together again. I simply loved it.”  -Susin Nielsen, Governor General’s Award-winning author of The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen and No Fixed Address

"Ghost's Journey shines a gentle light on the dangers faced by so many LGBTQ+ people in countries around the world. It's a powerful and important story, beautifully written and full of captivating images." - Susan Juby, author of Alice I Think and the Republic of Dirt
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"Reading this story I realize again how fortunate we are to live in a society where we can talk, think, act, believe and love as free human beings; where we respect our neighbours even if they differ from us. I hope that many children will read this tender tale and wonder why people around the world can't revel in that same freedom, that we so often take for granted. Because only when we wonder why something isn't right, can we change injustices. Welcome to Canada, Ghost and your daddies." - Margriet Ruurs, award-winning author of Stepping Stones, A Refugee Family’s Journey

"Ghost's story is not just an endearing cat tale, it's also a gentle but honest introduction to human rights issues for young audiences." -Kyle Lukoff, author of When Aidan Became a Brother and A Storytelling of Ravens 
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Ghost’s Journey is a perfect fit for teaching young audiences about SOGI, family diversity, human rights, and social justice. Parents, primary teachers and elementary school librarians will love this picture book; a ‘must have’ on every kid’s bookshelf!” - Solveig Davie, Teacher-Librarian, SD44 

"With gentle, evocative prose, and a cuddly protagonist, Stevenson recounts Eka and Rainer’s journey from Java through the lens of the two men’s cat, Ghost. Ghost’s perspective provides young readers with an accessible entry point to explore the plight of LGBTQ immigrants fleeing violence in their own countries. Ghost’s Journey is hopeful and engaging, packing an emotional punch that will help illuminate the struggles of LGBTQ individuals at home and abroad." -Robert Bittner, Postdoctoral Fellow and LGBTQ Literature Scholar.

"Robin Stevenson has an incredible talent for making difficult subjects accessible for all ages. Ghost’s Journey: A Refugee Story is no exception. For a book that deals with the terrible victimization of LGBTQ+ people and refugees, Ghost’s Journey, at its heart, is less about the horrors Rainer and Eka faced that forced them to flee their home and more about the love they share for each other and the home they have created with their beloved cat. Ghost’s Journey is a beautiful, much-needed book told through the eyes of a cat who follows his dads halfway across the world to create a new home together where they are free to love each other openly and without fear. Something everyone has a right to do." -Melanie Florence, award-winning author of Stolen Words and Missing Nimana

"This introduction to LGBTQ human rights for young children is a gentle and effective one.”- Kirkus Reviews

Educator Information
Picture Book for ages 3-8.

Ghost's Journey is the perfect fit to teach young audiences about family diversity, human rights, and social justice.

Keywords and Themes: Refugees, LGBTQ+, Indonesia, Canada, Animals (Cats), Social Justice, Human Rights, Family Diversity.

Additional Information
40 pages | 9.00" x 9.00"

Authentic Canadian Content
$21.99

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Ho'onani: Hula Warrior
Authors:
Artists:
Format: Hardcover
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Hawaiian;
Grade Levels: Preschool; Kindergarten; 1; 2; 3;

An empowering celebration of identity, acceptance and Hawaiian culture based on the true story of a young girl in Hawaiʻi who dreams of leading the boys-only hula troupe at her school.

Ho'onani feels in-between. She doesn't see herself as wahine (girl) OR kane (boy). She's happy to be in the middle. But not everyone sees it that way.

When Ho'onani finds out that there will be a school performance of a traditional kane hula chant, she wants to be part of it. But can a girl really lead the all-male troupe? Ho'onani has to try . . .

Based on a true story, Ho'onani: Hula Warrior is a celebration of Hawaiian culture and an empowering story of a girl who learns to lead and learns to accept who she really is--and in doing so, gains the respect of all those around her.

Ho'onani's story first appeared in the documentary A Place in the Middle by filmmakers Dean Hamer and Joe Wilson.

Reviews
“Boldly outlined watercolor and ink artwork . . . convey visual information with strength that suggests Ho‘onani’s own. And Gale grounds the child’s experience, based on a true story, in Hawaiian traditions, modeling showing ‘every person the same unconditional acceptance and respect’.” --Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Ho'onani’s courage to be true to herself and her place in the middle is empowering. Hawaiian words are intermixed, and Song’s illustrations are full of emotion and determination.” --Kirkus Reviews

Ho’onani: Hula Warrior tells the story of a young gender-nonconforming child who, though she still uses female pronouns, does not wish to be either a girl or a boy. Ho’onani is seen by some as too loud, too brash, too masculine. But when she starts to show an interest in leading a group of students in a hula chant, some don’t believe she can do it because she’s not a boy, not strong enough, not bold enough! Stuck in the middle but not willing to back down, Ho’onani and her teacher, Kumu Hina (“kumu” means teacher), work to build her skills and prepare her to take the tests necessary to show that she is skilled enough to lead. And while her parents and brother are not very surprised at Ho’onani’s determination, Kana, her sister, is less than pleased and stops hanging out with Ho’onani like they used to. But in the end, Ho’onani works hard and continues to buck stereotypes in the process, ultimately bringing her closer to her goal with each passing day, until the moment arrives when she must prove herself in front of the whole community.

This empowering and delightfully engaging picture book is based on the true story of Ho’onani Kamai who was raised in Honolulu and was coached by Hinaleimoana Kwai Kong Wong-Kalu (shortened in the book to Kumu Hina). An author’s note at the beginning gives a more detailed explanation of the real-life story, some history and a mention of the documentary (A Place in the Middle) which was inspired by Ho’onani and Kumu Hina’s working together.

.... The story is not simply one of strength and overcoming obstacles, but it is also a story about traditions, acceptance, and respect for others. Ho’onani is not simply a determined youngster, but also an individual trying to help others understand that gender stereotypes are harmful and limiting. Gale’s picture book will help young readers and adults better understand a small slice of Hawaiian traditions and nonbinary people, referred to as Mahu, those who embody both feminine and masculine traits.

.... An entertaining, illuminating, and empowering read, Ho’onani: Hula Warrior will make a welcome addition to classrooms, libraries, and story times!” --CM Magazine

Educator Information
Recommended for ages 4-8.

The author thanks Ho'onani Kamia and Kumu Hina on her website for allowing her to write this story.

Additional Information
40 pages | 8.80" x 11.40"

Authentic Canadian Content
$21.99

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The Eagle's Path
Artists:
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: 3; 4; 5; 6; 7;

Anna explores what it means to be Mohawk, her own identity and the identity of others as she learns to follow the Eagle’s path. She learns how her culture has taught many generations to value honesty, wisdom and courage in their day-to-day lives. Anna also learns about two-spirit people when her best friend tells her that she likes other girls. This revelation leaves her full of questions, and with support from her wise and loving mother, she understands the value in accepting everyone for who they are.

A powerful story to share with children of all ages.

Reviews
"Colour pencil sketches illustrate the story of 10-year-old Anna whose school friend Jill announces she prefers girls when the two talk about boys at their school. Anna is troubled and her parents notice Anna is unusually quiet at home. Her mother gently asks what is troubling Anna. Anna explains her confusion about her Jill’s statement that she likes girls and to Anna that is something she terms as gross. Mother explains proper terminology for female and male identity and introduces the term, two-spirit. Anna may find this new concept difficult but her mother reminds Anna of her eagle necklace and the teachings of courage, honesty and wisdom. The author has added an introductory paragraph about why she wrote this story. She also has included questions as conversation starters and an introduction of two new terms: discrimination and two-spirit for elementary classrooms." - Review from The Teaching Librarian, The Magazine of the Ontario School Library Association

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
$10.95

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