123RF/Wavebreak Media Ltd
School is out (hurray and woot!) and you’ve got all sorts of time on your hands. Well, that’s after you go to camp, play with your friends, go to your local community rec centre, hit the park for some goofing around… OK, so maybe there’s not that much free time. But if you do get a chance to just sit down under a leafy tree or on your favourite big pillow to unwind and you’re looking for something to read now that you’re finished with Harry Potter, here are some must-read books recommended by the folks over at The Next Chapter.
by Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton
Ages: 9-12 | Annick Press
Margaret wants to learn to read more than anything - even if it means leaving her family in the Arctic village where she grew up. Eventually her family relents and Margaret heads off to school - where Margaret meets challenges greater than she ever expected. A black-cloaked nun known as the Raven is intent on making Margaret's transition to school as difficult as possible. But Margaret won't give up her dream of learning to read. An inspiring true story of resilience.
by Mahtab Narsimhan
Ages: 9-13 | Scholastic
When aspiring photographer Dylan Moore is invited to join his best friend, Rohit Lal, on a family trip to India, he jumps at the chance to embark on an exciting journey just like their Lord of the Rings heroes, Frodo and Sam. But each boy comes to the trip with a problem: Rohit is desperate to convince his parents not to leave him behind in Mumbai to finish school, and Dylan is desperate to stay in India to prove himself as a photographer and to avoid his parents' constant fighting. Keeping their struggles to themselves threatens to tear the boys apart. But when disaster strikes, Dylan and Rohit realize they have to set aside their differences to navigate India safely, confront their family issues, and salvage their friendship.
by Frank Viva
Ages: 8+ | Tundra Books
One summer can change your whole life. As soon as school lets out, Eliot's parents send him to the very edge of the world: a fishing village in a remote part of Nova Scotia. And what does the small town of Point Aconi have to offer? Maggots, bullies and grumpy old men. But along the way, Eliot discovers much more - a hidden library, starry nights and a mysterious girl named Mary Beth.
by Iain Lawrence
Ages: 8-12 | Tundra Books
Less than forty-eight hours after twelve-year-old Chris sets off on a sailing trip down the Alaskan coast with his uncle, their boat sinks. The only survivors are Chris and a boy named Frank, who hates Chris immediately. Chris and Frank have no radio, no flares, no food. Suddenly, they've got to forage, fish, and scavenge the shore for supplies. Chris likes the company of a curious, friendly raven more than he likes the prickly Frank. But the boys have to get along if they want to survive. Because as the days get colder and the salmon migration ends, survival will take more than sheer force of will. Eventually, in the wilderness of Alaska, the boys discover an improbable bond - and the compassion that might truly be the path to rescue.
by Deborah Kerbel
Ages: 9-13 | Kids Can Press
For eleven-year-old Finch, there couldn't be a better time to fly away from her life. Her dad died last year and her mom hasn't been the same since, her best friend dropped her, and her brother's awful classmate is too mean for words. But when a girl named Pinky moves in next door, a girl from India who also doesn't seem to fit in, Finch feels a flicker of hope that her life might just be turning around. And when something terrible happens and it seems Finch may be the only one who can help her new friend, she comes to understand that flying is not the answer - sometimes right where you are is the best place to be.
Our list of great holiday books was put together with reviews from Common Sense Media and descriptions from CBC Books and pthe publishers.