Book Recommendations

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Indie Author

The Weight of a Thousand Oceans
Jillian Webster

This story is a dystopian novel, but the author's concept of dystopia is very unique. I don't want to share any spoilers, but I really enjoyed the amount of realism and forethought to creating this future world.⁠ 

There are so many reasons I really enjoyed this book, but one of the first was that within the first few pages, I fell in love with her writing style. She describes everything using a wide range of vocabulary that is specific in a way that I can vividly picture what is happening. I find often authors do describe what's happening, but their word choice merely allows me to picture characters going through the plot, instead of making me feel like I'm actually standing there and it's happening to me. Jillian does this wonderfully!

Her writing style also allowed me to feel very connected to the MC and her journey. While reading this book, I couldn't count the number of times I caught myself willing the MC to turn and look for her dog nearby her. I've never had a dog before and haven't experienced a deep dog-love connection, but with this book, I cared just as deeply for the dog as I did about the other characters.⁠

Jillian has the ability to grip the reader from their home and pull them into this ever-exciting journey. The story stays with you for days after. Can't wait for the next in the series! 

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Classic Comic

Scott Pilgrim vs.
The World

Bryan Lee O'Maley

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys comics, video games, comedy, or love stories. O'Malley tells the story of a young adult without a job who freeloads from his friends and attempts to rock in a band. He meets a mysterious girl who he becomes infatuated with, and must defeat her seven evil ex's in order to continue dating her. The style of the comic is kind of like a retro-style video game crossed with classic comic book battles.

The whole style of this comic is unique and classic-comic all at the same time. O'Malley is a creative individual who pays attention to detail! He makes his story interactive by adding unique features like chords and lyrics, and real places in Toronto. 

 

There is some mature content, so I would definitely recommend it to teens and older.

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Indigenous Authors

This Place: 150 Years Retold
Anthology

My school district believes that TRUTH must occur first in order for RECONCILIATION to be successful.⁠

There is such wisdom in this, yet for some reason, Canadian history textbooks are still written from a very colonial lens. Sure, some of them touch on topics such residential schools, but that's only one part of the ugly history of this country.⁠

This Place: 150 Years Retold is a book that should be in every high school in Canada. It tells the history of Canada through an Indigenous lens, with authentic Indigenous voice. Each story in the anthology includes background information about the author, a timeline of important events in Canada, and stunning artwork from a variety of artists. ⁠

This year, my Grade 7/8 Humanities (English/Social Studies) read three stories from this book. One was about the potlatch ban, which lasted nearly 75 years, and left long-lasting impacts for Indigenous peoples. Another story was about the racism and discrimination faced by Metis people in Red River, and how lies were spread about Metis and Indigenous people through newspapers when this was the main form of communication in the country. The last story we read, looked at how the Dene people of the North were able to postpone the Mackenzie Pipeline through the power of speech and community. A couple of these stories also shared about the lives of great Chiefs who were amazing leaders for their communities. Upon reflecting at the end of the term, my students told me how grateful they were to learn the TRUTH, and how this has helped them to understand the greater issues in our country.⁠