Parentbooks has become a go-to place for parents and schools in need of resources and guidance in Toronto and beyond
Parentbooks' selection of resources for parents and professionals serving the everyday and special needs of families is unequalled..
Parentbooks has become a go-to place for parents and schools in need of resources and guidance in Toronto and beyond
Parentbooks will be closing permanently at the end of January. After more than three decades of community bookselling, we are ready to retire.
Parentbooks will be open Monday to Friday, 12:00 to 5:00 for online and phone orders ONLY until January 29th. We are happy to mail your order, or you can arrange for a curbside pickup. No in-store customers allowed.
We are proud of the work we have done with many communities in the GTA, Ontario, across Canada, and indeed around the world. Parentbooks has had a profound relationship with the Autism community; we supported the growth of midwifery in Ontario; and we worked closely with educators, clinicians, ECEs, caregivers, and others across a wide spectrum of professions.
At the heart of it all, we are connected to the families that have come to Parentbooks looking for resources to help them through the challenges of raising a family. Parents of young children and teens. Families with special needs. Families in the LGBTQQ+ community. Foster care and families of adoption. The trust you have put in us over the years has made being a community bookstore a remarkable endeavour.
Everyone at Parentbooks is grateful for the support you have given us over the years. We hope that you will continue to search out independent, local booksellers, and give them your business and loyalty.
Patti, Bill, Maureen and Leslie
The Barren Grounds: Book One of the Misewa Saga. David Robertson, $21.99 (ages 10++)
Morgan and Eli, two Indigenous children forced away from their families and communities, are brought together in a foster home in Winnipeg, Manitoba. They each feel disconnected, from their culture and each other, and struggle to fit in at school and at their new home — until they find a secret place, walled off in an unfinished attic bedroom. A portal opens to another reality, Askí, bringing them onto frozen, barren grounds, where they meet Ochek (Fisher). The only hunter supporting his starving community, Misewa, Ochek welcomes the human children, teaching them traditional ways to survive. But as the need for food becomes desperate, they embark on a dangerous mission. Accompanied by Arik, a sassy Squirrel they catch stealing from the trapline, they try to save Misewa before the icy grip of winter freezes everything — including them.
Autism after the Pandemic: a Step-by-Step Guide Back to School & Work. James ball & Kristie Brown-Lofland, $20.95
We have come to a new normal - life after the arrival of COVID-19. How do we help those with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities and those on the autism spectrum return to school or adult services? It has been a long haul at home! Both the children and the adults are used to the home environment and routines. Some students have been out of their programs since March. It is now time to go back to the normal school and work routine, but what does that “normal” mean? Learn the strategies needed prior to your child going back to school or to their adult services placement such as:
• How to get started
• How you can prepare your child to transition back to school
• How to establish routine
• And much more!
COVID-19 for Kids: Understand the Coronavirus Disease and How to Stay Healthy. Catherine Cheung & Elvin Too, illustrated by Christy Johnson, $9.99 (ages 2-6)
Talk to your kids about the coronavirus using simple rhymes and illustrations.. COVID-19 for Kids includes a discussion guide and activities to help you share the facts, and answer children's questions on how to stay healthy and stop the spread of COVID-19.
Heroes Wear Masks: Elmo's Super Adventure. Sesame Street, $9.99 (ages 3-7)
Heroes Wear Masks is a sweet and educational mask book for kids that reminds readers it's super to help everyone stay healthy and safe! It's the perfect pandemic book with tools to discuss important topics as kids go back to school, preschool, daycare, or out in any public setting where they'd need a face mask. Plus, this Sesame Street book includes bonus tips for grown-ups in the back with language parents, caregivers, and educators can use with young children to talk about staying healthy!
Our Little Kitchen. Jillian Tamaki, $19.95 (ages 4-8)
A picture book about a lively evening in a community kitchen from Governor General’s Award–winning author and illustrator Jillian Tamaki. Tie on your apron! Roll up your sleeves! Pans are out, oven is hot. The kitchen’s all ready, Where do we start?
In this lively, rousing picture book from Caldecott Honoree Jillian Tamaki, a crew of resourceful neighbours come together to prepare a meal for their community. With a garden full of produce, a joyfully chaotic kitchen and a friendly meal shared at the table, Our Little Kitchen is a celebration of full bellies and people looking out for one another. Includes two recipes and an author’s note about the volunteering experience that inspired the book.
MICHAELISM: My POV On Life with Autism. Michael Tanzer, $24.95
"MICHAELISM: My POV on Life with Autism was written based on my own personal experiences having Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). I was diagnosed when I was three years old when I was in Preschool and let me tell you something: it has not been an easy road I have worked hard with my family and other professionals who have supported me throughout my whole life and continue to help me. This book is based on my own personal experiences and I am sharing my Point of View (POV) on life with Autism. Everyone on the spectrum is different. I hope that the readers will gain a better understanding of individuals with ASD."
Impossible Parenting: Creating a New Culture of Mental Health for Parents. Olivia Scobie, $22.99
A roadmap for parents who want to feel less pressure and more joy during the intense early years of childrearing.
Why is it that research suggests people who don’t have kids are happier than people who do? Olivia Scobie provides practical solutions for parents who find themselves pushing beyond their capacity to meet impossible standards, and challenges parents to shift their thinking from child centred to family centred. By naming today’s unrealistic parenting expectations as impossible from the get-go, Impossible Parenting creates the space to acknowledge harmful expectations for new parents and begins a conversation that focuses on healing and doing the best one can with the resources available.
I Promise. LeBron James, illustrated by Nina Mta, $24.99 (ages 4-8)
Just a kid from Akron, Ohio, who is dedicated to uplifting youth everywhere, LeBron James knows the key to a better future is to excel in school, do your best, and keep your family close.
I Promise is a lively and inspiring picture book that reminds us that tomorrow’s success starts with the promises we make to ourselves and our community today. Featuring James’s upbeat, rhyming text and vibrant illustrations perfectly crafted for a diverse audience by New York Times bestselling artist Nina Mata, this book has the power to inspire all children and families to be their best. Perfect for shared reading in and out of the classroom, I Promise is also a great gift for graduation, birthdays, and other occasions.
Life Will Never Be Dull: the Little Book of Autism Adventures. Deborah Brownson, illustrated by Michelle Rebello-Tindall, $19.95
'A sense of humour definitely helps, as will sleep, and did I mention wine...?'
This delightful book is a light-hearted, playful and sincere look at life with an autistic child. Humorous illustrations depict those unique moments that every autistic child's family will recognize, and gently remind the reader to take care of themselves and appreciate the many wonderful experiences of being a mother, father, brother or sister to an autistic person.
The Playgrounds of Babel. Jonarno Lawson, illustrated by Piet Grobler, $18.95 (ages 4-8)
This beautiful book is about the power of song, inspired by the story of the Tower of Babel. This unusual, thought-provoking story begins with an old woman telling a tale to a group of children in a playground. One of the children can’t understand what she is saying, so another offers to translate. The old woman’s tale is inspired by the Tower of Babel story: In the days when everyone spoke the same language, the people built a tower to reach God. But God was annoyed and sent a dragon to destroy the tower, then created new languages for everyone so that they couldn’t understand each other. Fortunately, two little girls find a way to communicate through song. Told entirely through dialogue, moving back and forth between the old woman’s tale and the exchange between the two boys, this original, sometimes funny story raises questions about what divides us and what brings us together, in spite of all our differences — it is the power of song in this case, which ultimately brings hope.
Caste: the Origins of Our Discontents. Isabel Wilkerson, $42.00
The Pulitzer Prize–winning, bestselling author of The Warmth of Other Suns examines the unspoken caste system that has shaped America and shows how our lives today are still defined by a hierarchy of human divisions.
“As we go about our daily lives, caste is the wordless usher in a darkened theater, flashlight cast down in the aisles, guiding us to our assigned seats for a performance. The hierarchy of caste is not about feelings or morality. It is about power—which groups have it and which do not.”
In this brilliant book, Isabel Wilkerson gives us a masterful portrait of an unseen phenomenon in America as she explores, through an immersive, deeply researched narrative and stories about real people, how America today and throughout its history has been shaped by a hidden caste system, a rigid hierarchy of human rankings.
Beyond race, class, or other factors, there is a powerful caste system that influences people’s lives and behavior and the nation’s fate. Linking the caste systems of America, India, and N**i Germany, Wilkerson explores eight pillars that underlie caste systems across civilizations, including divine will, bloodlines, stigma, and more. Using riveting stories about people—including Martin Luther King, Jr., baseball’s Satchel Paige, a single father and his toddler son, Wilkerson herself, and many others—she shows the ways that the insidious undertow of caste is experienced every day. She documents how the N**is studied the racial systems in America to plan their out-cast of the Jews; she discusses why the cruel logic of caste requires that there be a bottom rung for those in the middle to measure themselves against; she writes about the surprising health costs of caste, in depression and life expectancy, and the effects of this hierarchy on our culture and politics. Finally, she points forward to ways America can move beyond the artificial and destructive separations of human divisions, toward hope in our common humanity.
Beautifully written, original, and revealing, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents is an eye-opening story of people and history, and a re-examination of what lies under the surface of ordinary lives and of American life today.
Parentbooks's cover photo
Been awhile since you set foot in a bookstore? Looking for something new to read with young ones? Have a parenting issue you'd like to solve? Is there a teenager in your life who could use some guidance? Searching for books to soothe anxiety and worry? Need ideas for the classroom? Do you just love the feeling of being in a bookstore???
Come on. You know you want to...
To Our Customers
Our space is small, so to maintain safe social distancing, we are allowing a maximum of two customers in the store at a time. Masks are mandatory, and you are encouraged to use the hand sanitizer near the door.
Parentbooks is also open for curbside pickup, phone and mail order. Contact us by phone, email, fax or place your order on our website.
We are grateful for your support, and for your patience and understanding, as we navigate these changes. We care deeply about our community, and we look forward to welcoming you back into the store.
Mon-Fri ● Noon-5:00pm
Peace, Love, Action! Everyday Acts of Goodness, From A to Z. Tanya Zabinski, $25.95 (ages 8-12)
Peace, Love, Action! is an illustrated, illuminated A-Z of everyday actions that directly make a peaceful, fun, and vibrant world. With original artworks bringing each action to life, "make friends," "go local," "cooperate," "forgive" — seemingly small deeds can really add up! Illustrated by Tanya Zabinski in her characteristic earthy style, each action comes with an inspirational mini-bio of a real hero who exemplifies that action, from Thich Nhat Hanh ("breathe") to Wangari Maathai ("plant"), and follows with a set of "What You Can Do" prompts. With a foreword by singer-songwriter and activist legend, Ani DiFranco.
Think for Yourself: the Ultimate Guide to Critical Thinking In an Age of Information Overload. Andrea Debbink & Aaron Meshon, $19.95 (ages 11-14)
This unique and timely book won’t tell you what to think — that’s up to you! — but it will show you how to think more deeply about your own life and current events. Covering a wide range of subjects affecting the world today, including human and animal rights, social media, cyber bullying, the refugee crisis, and more, THINK FOR YOURSELF will help you to learn how to ask questions, analyze evidence, and use logic to draw conclusions, so you can solve problems and make smart decisions. Critical thinking doesn’t stop when you’ve reached a decision. Learn how to discuss and debate other points of view. Then keep growing. Sometimes you might change your mind — that’s OK, too!
So ... a May holiday weekend unlike any other. Stay safe!
Watch for the red maple leaf symbol on our booklists, indicating Canadian authors and illustrators!
The Girl and the Wolf. Katherena Vermette, illustrated by Julie Flett, $19.95 (ages 3-5)
While picking berries with her mother, a little girl wanders too far into the woods. When she realizes she is lost, she begins to panic. A large grey wolf makes a sudden appearance between some distant trees. Using his sense of smell, he determines where she came from and decides to help her. Through a series of questions from the wolf, the little girl realizes she had the knowledge and skill to navigate herself — she just needed to remember that those abilities were there all along.
The Night Gardener. Terry Fan & Eric Fan, $21.99 (ages 4-8)
One day, William discovers that the tree outside his window has been sculpted into a wise owl. In the following days, more topiaries appear, and each one is more beautiful than the last. Soon, William’s gray little town is full of color and life. And though the mysterious night gardener disappears as suddenly as he appeared, William — and his town — are changed forever.
Little You. Richard Van Camp, illustrated by Julie Flett, $10.95
Small In the City. Sydney Smith, $19.95 (ages 4-7)
On a snowy day in a big city, a little boy hops off a streetcar and walks through downtown, between office buildings, through parks and down busy streets. Along the way, he provides helpful tips about which alleys make good shortcuts, which trees to climb and where to find a friendly face. All the while, the boy searches for what he has lost...
The first book that award-winning illustrator Sydney Smith has written tells a story of what it means to get lost in the city, travel the wrong path and get caught in bad weather — and to ultimately find your way back home. His beautiful watercolour illustrations alternate between full spreads and small panels, evoking the sometimes overwhelming cacophony of urban sights and sounds, as well as the quiet moments that make all of us feel less small in the city.
The M Word: Conversations about Motherhood. Edited by Kerry Clare, $22.95
In this original and sometimes provocative collection of essays, Saleema Nawaz, Alison Pick, Nancy Jo Cullen, Carrie Snyder, and many others explore the boundaries of contemporary motherhood. There are the women who have had too many children or not enough. There are women for whom motherhood is a fork in the road, encountered with contradictory emotions. And there are those who have made the conscious choice not to have children and then find themselves defined by that decision.
So many fantastic Canadian authors and illustrators ... where to start?
Put On Your Owl Eyes: Open Your Senses and Discover Nature's Secrets — Mapping, Tracking & Journaling Activities. Devin Franklin, $24.95 (ages 8-13)
Children will see the natural world around them with brand new eyes, as they learn to follow its signs, hear its language, and understand its secrets. With this unique and compelling book written by expert environmental educator Devin Franklin, kids aged 8 to 13 will build their own relationship with nature through finding a “Sit Spot” — an outdoor space in the backyard, in a field or in the woods, in a vacant lot or a city park — where they can stop, observe, and become familiar with the flora and fauna that live there.
From the Six Arts of Tracking (Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How) and making a habitat map to walking in smooth silence like a fox and learning the basics of bird language, exploration exercises lead young readers on a fascinating journey of discovery as they watch, listen, map, interpret, and write about the sounds, sights, scents, and patterns they encounter. With prompts and write-in spaces for journaling, map-making activities, and observational tracking throughout, Put On Your Owl Eyes is an interactive and thought-provoking guidebook.
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