Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 8 to 12
- Grade: 3 to 7
Dilly can’t believe her eyes. That new kid, Gedion—Sulky-face—is shoplifting from her family’s store, and her mother is just letting it happen. No wonder her parents can’t afford to buy her those special hockey skates she’s always wanted. But as soon as Dilly tells on Gedion, she realizes that some things are better left unsaid. Gedion’s father has just lost his job, and he has to put back some groceries to pay for the chocolate bars his son has stolen. To make up for her thoughtless action, Dilly comes up with the most fabulous, beautiful, wonderful idea: she’ll throw a Christmas party for Gedion and his parents, just like the ones Gedion’s father said they used to have in the old country.
With her best friends on board, Dilly’s plan grows and grows. Soon the whole community is involved—from pipsqueak Simon to Dilly’s grandmother, a.k.a. the Great White Hen—with some hilarious and unexpected results. But has the party become too big? How will they raise all the money they need without Dilly having to dip into her own savings for those hockey skates she’s been yearning for? With Sulky-face always glaring at her, Dilly wonders why she’s bothering in the first place.
About the author
Rachna Gilmore is the critically acclaimed Governor General's Award winning author of numerous books with multiple honours and awards. Her publications include picture books, early readers, middle grade and young adult novels, as well as adult fiction. Her books are sold internationally with translations in French, Danish, German, Korean, Dutch, Spanish, Urdu, Bengali, Chinese as well as several other languages.
Rachna's fantasy novel, The Sower of Tales, won the National Chapter IODE Violet Downey Book Award, and was nominated for the Red Maple Award and the Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Award. Her YA novel, A Group of One, (published by Henry Holt, and now available in paperback in Canada, published by Fitzhenry & Whiteside) received a Jane Addams Children's Book Award Honor citation and was included in the New York Public Library's Best Books for the Teen Age list.
A student of life, Rachna loves to explore the ideas that spark and seize her imagination, as well as to play with words. She calls the process of creating books plarking - work, she says, is too tedious and grinding a word to describe the delight of the creative process, and play doesn't quite convey the real time and effort that goes into completing a book, whereas plarking covers it all, especially as it also reflects the joy and song of larking about.
Born in India, Rachna has lived in London, England, Prince Edward Island, and now lives in Ottawa. A skilled and experienced presenter, Rachna loves to share her enthusiasm for reading and writing; she has given readings and workshops in schools, libraries and conferences across the country as well as internationally.