Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Children's Fiction Friendship

Fast Friends

by (author) Heather M. O'Connor

illustrated by Claudia Dávila

Scholastic Canada Ltd
Initial publish date
Jul 2020
Friendship, Special Needs, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Jul 2020
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 3 to 7
  • Grade: p to 2



Every child has a voice — if we take the time to listen.


In this appealing, energetic picture book, two kids with different challenges and strengths find they are just what the other needs to navigate classroom life.

Tyson does everything fast — so fast he often disrupts the class. His teacher is always saying, “Too fast, Tyson!” And often he ends up playing all alone.

Suze, the new girl, is nonverbal with special needs. Sometimes her classmates don’t know what those needs are.

But Tyson understands. Taking the time to interpret her cues, Tyson forms a special friendship with Suze, and teaches his classmates what it means to listen and understand others.

Claudia Dávila’s bright, energetic art captures the joy of moving at your own speed and connecting with a friend who can ride alongside.


About the authors


HEATHER M. O’CONNOR est auteure et éditrice. Son premier roman, Betting Game, a été publié chez Orca et a reçu des critiques très positives. L’histoire de Tyson et Suze lui a été inspirée par sa fille dont les camarades de classe ont poussé le fauteuil roulant à travers les années. Comme le dit Heather, cela prouve que même un enfant non verbal a une voix, si on prend le temps de l’écouter. Heather vit à Peterborough, en Ontario.


Heather M. O’Connor is a freelance writer, editor and author. Her first novel, Betting Game, was published by Orca and very well reviewed. Fast Friends is her first picture book. This story was inspired by her daughter and the classmates who wheeled her through the years. Heather lives in Peterborough, Ontario.

Heather M. O'Connor's profile page


CLAUDIA DÁVILA a été directrice artistique des magazines Chirp et ChickaDEE, en plus d’être l’auteure-illustratrice de la série de bandes dessinées primées The Future According to Luz et de l’album Super Red Riding Hood. Elle a également illustré l’ouvrage percutant et multi récompensé Child Soldier: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War de Michel Chikwanine et Jessica Dee Humphreys, ainsi que Viminy Crowe’s Comic Book de Marthe Jocelyn et Richard Scrimger. Claudia est née à Santiago, au Chili, et vit maintenant à Toronto avec sa famille.


Claudia Dávila is the former art director of Chirp and chickaDEE magazines, and is the author-illustrator of the award-winning graphic novel series The Future According to Luz and the picture book Super Red Riding Hood. Claudia illustrated the powerful and multi-award-winning book Child Soldier: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War by Michel Chikwanine and Jessica Dee Humphreys, Viminy Crowe's Comic Book by Marthe Jocelyn and Richard Scrimger and The Canadian Kids Guide to Outdoor Fun by Helaine Becker. Claudia was born in Santiago, Chile, and lives in Toronto, Ontario, with her husband and two children.

Claudia Dávila's profile page


  • Short-listed, IODE Toronto Jean Throop Award
  • Winner, Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Award
  • Short-listed, Shining Willow Award (Saskatchewan Young Readers' Choice)
  • Short-listed, OLA Blue Spruce Award
  • Commended, OLA Best Bets
  • Commended, Toronto Public Library First & Best booklist
  • Commended, Best Books for Kids and Teens, Canadian Children's Book Centre

Editorial Reviews



Praise for Fast Friends:

"Authentic representation of students with special needs in literature is so important. In this book, our students see themselves and identify with the characters. Fast Friends will be added as a resource for our self-advocacy student groups and will be a staple in our Disability Awareness Program. We are so excited about this book and what it means to our students.” — Teacher-Librarian, Bloorview School Authority


Other titles by Heather M. O'Connor

Other titles by Claudia Dávila

Related lists