Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Port Burwell

Share |

Just returned from a school visit to Port Burwell Public School, down by Lake Erie. What an enthusiastic bunch of kids, and the teachers work so hard with small budgets to give the students they best education they possibly can. The librarian is also the music teacher. He has no budget for books, so he has a band in his spare time. They give concerts to raise money for the school library. Pretty amazing. The whole staff is like that, and it's reflected in the students. They had tons of intelligent questions about politics and writing and social justice.

One of the students had both his parents there. They said that their whole family are big readers, and that between them they cover almost every literary genre: the Dad reads science fiction, the Mom reads history, one daughter reads horror and poetry, another son reads realistic fiction and non-fiction. They told me the whole family hangs out together, all reading their separate books, but still being together.

Hearing that reminded me of two of Jean Little's Books, Look Through My Window, and Kate. Kate's family owns a bookstore, and they all sit together and read their separate books, too, everynow and then someone interupting to say, "Listen to this:", then reading from their book. That scene, like so many other things Jean has written, has stayed in my brain all these years, and it was a delight to meet this family who personified that.

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

Related item from our archives

Deborah Ellis

Deborah Ellis is the acclaimed author of over 18 books and the recipient of numerous literary awards, including the Vicky Metcalfe Award for a body of work, the Governor General’s Award, the Africana Book Award, the Canadian Library Association Book of the Year Honour, and the Red Cedar Award. She has traveled the world to meet with and hear the stories of children marginalized by war, illness, and poverty, and has recorded their stories for others to read and learn from.

Go to Deborah Ellis’s Author Page