Catherine Austen books for young people

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"Her writing cuts straight to the heart."

(The Globe and Mail)


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Literary Novels for Children and Young Adults

Walking Backward cover


Walking Backward (Orca Book Publishers)

A 12-year-old boy's journal kept through the months following his mother's death, as he tries to discover how she died and how his family can survive without her.

Shortlisted for the Red Cedars, the Diamond Willows, the MYRCAs, and the CLA 2010 Book of the Year for Children Award.

Read More For children and adults looking for a good read, a funny read, a sad read, or bibliotherapy.

All Good Children cover

All Good Children (Orca Book Publishers)

Set in the near future, when schools are intent on medicating all students for improved behaviour - a fate that 15-year-old graffiti artist Maxwell Connors will do anything to escape.

Winner of the Canadian Library Association 2012 Young Adult Book Award and the 2012 Sunburst Award (young adult category), and a White Pine Honour Book.

Read MoreFor teens and adults who like slow-building tension, a few laughs, and some emotional agony before the story ends.

Middle-Grade Comedies

26 Tips cover

26 Tips for Surviving Grade 6 (Lorimer)

Forget social studies, math, and science - in this episodic novel, 11-year-old Becky Lennox offers hard-earned tips for surviving fickle friends, annoying brothers, embarrassing parents, and boys who don't know you exist.

Winner of the 2012 QWF Prize for Children's and Young Adult Literature and  the 2012-13 Hackmatack Children's Choice Award for English Fiction.

Read More For girlfriends, comedy lovers, and reluctant readers.

28 Tricks cover

28 Tricks for a Fearless Grade 6 (Lorimer)

Would you lose your voice to avoid public speaking? Get suspended to get out of a dance? This episodic novel is full of hare-brained schemes from phobia-fighter Dave Davidson, who always has one last trick up his sleeve to help his friends make their way through the scariest moments of grade 6. 

A 2016 Diamond Willow Award nominee and a CCBC 2014 Best Book (Starred). 

Read More For school friends, comedy lovers, and reluctant readers.

Picture Books

My Cat Isis cover

My Cat Isis (Kids Can Press), illustrated by Virginie Egger

Through brief text and lavish illustrations, a young cat owner compares what he reads about the ancient Egyptian goddess Isis to his pet cat of the same name. 

A Resource Links 2011 Year's Best title. 

This 2011  title was, alas, put out of print at the end of 2015, largely due to its unfortunate title. (The ancient Egyptian goddess had dibs on the name Isis long before the modern terrorist organization adopted it as its acronym.)

Read MoreA tongue-in-cheek picture book for readers of all ages.

Coming Soon...

My next picture book, When Squirrels Stole my Sister, is in development with Fitzhenry & Whiteside.

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