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Children's Fiction Games

Emma's New Game

by (author) Gerald Mercer

illustrated by Jillian Nicol

Flanker Press
Initial publish date
Sep 2009
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2009
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 5 to 10
  • Grade: 3 to 5


Emma is getting ready to go partridgeberry picking with her grandparents when she hears a loud thump on the shed roof. Startled, she runs outside to tell her grandfather. Poppy T explains that the noise was caused by a horse chestnut falling from the tree behind the shed.  Poppy T teaches Emma the game he used to play with chestnuts, and she decides to try it out for herself. Emma and Poppy T are joined in the shed by Thomas, Jeffrey, and their grandfathers. The battle to be conker champion is on!?xml:namespace prefix="o" ns="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

About the authors

Gerald N. J. Mercer has been an educator in Newfoundland and Labrador for twenty-eight years. He remembers walking to and from school in the fall, filling his pockets with horse chestnuts that had fallen from neighbourhood trees. Although he tried many different ways of preparing them for battle, the oven method seemed to work best. Gerald Mercer lives with his wife, Daphne, and three children, Rebecca, Andrew, and Simeon, in Mount Pearl, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Gerald Mercer's profile page

Jillian Nicol was born and raised in St. John’s, Newfoundland. Always a lover of art, she attended Sir Wilfred Grenfell University and obtained a BFA in Visual Art. After finishing school, she worked in St. John’s as a screen printer, t-shirt designer, and freelance illustrator, a career she is working hard to pursue in her current home of Gatineau, Quebec.

Jillian Nicol's profile page

Librarian Reviews

Emma’s New Game

Who says kids today only want to play video games? In this delightful story, Poppy T teaches his granddaughter and her friends how to play the game of conkers with horse chestnuts. When all the grandfathers get involved, the battle to be the conker champion is on. This delightful intergenerational tale will warm the hearts of kids and grandparents alike.

Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Best Books for Kids & Teens. 2011.

Other titles by Gerald Mercer

Other titles by Jillian Nicol