For most of this country's history, Canadian children's literature, with the exception of such notable authors as Charles G.D. Roberts, Ernest Thompson Seton, L.M. Montgomery, and Grey Owl (Archibald Belaney), was not a 'growth industry'. British and American books were readily available andhad already achieved approval in the centres of intellect or fashion. More recently, however, with a larger and more diverse population and with the support of numerous publishers specializing in the field and a growing list of annual awards to honour excellence in both writing and illustrating,Canadian children's books have become an important part of our ongoing literary culture. Canadian authors and illustrators, from Farley Mowat and Mordecai Richler to Gordon Korman, Monica Hughes, William Kurelek, and Dennis Lee, have become among our best-known cultural exports. In Canadian Children's Books, Professors Raymond Jones and Jon Stott provide teachers, librarians, and other educators, parents and relatives, and students of children and of children's literature with a comprehensive and detailed examination of this now rich field. Each of the 133 entries onauthors and illustrators presents factual and critical information along multiple dimensions. In addition to authors and illustrators of historical and contemporary importance in the English mainstream, creators of ethnic, Aboriginal, and French-Canadian origin also are included. There arerepresentatives of regions--the North, the East, the West, and the rest between--and of all genres: retold folktales and myths, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, sports, wilderness adventure, animal epic, chapter books, picture books, poetry, stories for reluctant readers. Appendices list thewinners of the major English-Canadian children's book awards and sources for further reading.
Raymond E. Jones, Professor, Department of English, University of Alberta. Jon C. Stott, Visiting Lecturer, Department of English, Western Washington University.