NEW BOOKS!

I’ve been reading a lot of ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) on NetGalley lately. Want to know which ones I’m looking forward to seeing on bookstore and library shelves? Click the links to see my reviews.


When Daddy Tucks Me In
Sacha Cotter
available February 2023 (originally published as KEYS in NZ)


Alphabreaths, Too
Christopher Willard & Daniel Rechtschaffen
available September 2022


Human Town
Alan Durant
Available Now!


Dinos Driving
Lynn Leitch
Available August 2022


Just to See
Morgan de Cadier
Available Now!


A Perfect Wonderful Day With Friends
Philip Waechter
Available August 2022


Little Echo
Al Rodin
Available October 2022


If You Cry Like a Fountain
Noemi Vola
Available August 2022


The Antiracist Kid: A Book About Identity, Justice, and Activism
Tiffany Jewell
Available September 2022
this one’s for middle grades and awesome 🙂

If you end up reading any of these books, would you let me know? I’d love to discuss them with you!

KidLit & Nature

I took 110 books to St. Olaf for the students to check out!

Last Tuesday, had the honor of guest lecturing at St. Olaf College in an ecology class taught by my friend, Kiara Jorgenson. The ecology topics class, “Biophilia,” is about the human attraction to and affection for other living things. One of their units is on children’s literature and nature and Prof. Jorgenson invited me to both collaborate with her on their children’s literature project, and share with them some kidlit history and demonstrate portions of their assignment (read-alouds, book selection, citations, activities, etc.). I brought 110 books from my personal collection that weren’t duplicates of St. Olaf’s pretty wonderful collection of board, picture, and chapter books. I was also able to read aloud three of my favorite books: May We Have Enough to Share (Richard Van Camp), The Girl and the Wolf (Katherena Vermette, pictures by Julie Flett), and Nibi’s Water Song (Sunshine Tenasco, pictures by Chief Lady Bird).

If you’d like to see the presentation I shared with the class, it is available online and downloadable PDF format.

On Thursday, I had the marvelous privilege of going with Prof. Jorgenson and her students to Dodge Nature Preschool and observing their 3-5 year olds in (very) muddy outdoor play. I got to taste some maple tree sap they collected and read two picture books with a small group at their teacher’s request! (In the Woods: Who’s been here? by Lindsay Barrett George, and Frog on a Log by Kes Gray with pictures by Jim Field)

Many thanks to Prof. Jorgenson, her students, and Preschool Director Amy Warzybok for a truly spectacular week!

Support the 2022 AERIS KÖRPER SEASON and FANCY CAT!

**UPDATE: FULLY FUNDED!**

I am so excited to support the Kickstarter Campaign for the Aeris Körper 2022 season!

Help us pay these artists!

We have FIVE days left to raise $12,000 (CAD). These funds will be used to pay artists in a number of upcoming projects in the 2022 Aeris Körper season. We have a VERY long way to go — would you consider supporting us?

The beautiful people pictured here (L to R: Alten, Mayumi, Shannon, Jody, Mikaela; on Zoom: me, Sid, Raphael, Dedra) joined us for a workshop of FANCY CAT, a children’s interdisciplinary art piece I wrote and am developing with AERIS KÖRPER and we could not be more thrilled about how it came together! 😻

The Boy Who Was Fire

🔥 Video Premiere!🔥

In commemoration of International Earth Day, I am pleased to premiere a new video in collaboration with Pockets of…Publishing & Kids in the Hive.

The Boy Who Was Fire is a children’s book written by Marcus Kahle McCann & illustrated by Zita Varga. It begins with a small fire born to a tree and a bolt of lightning. This is a lyrical story of growth, redemption, and new beginnings. Appropriate for ages 5 years and older.

I am moved by this creative vision of what might happen if we put our fears of the unknown aside and lean into each other with compassion, recognizing the beauty and humanity of the person in front of us.

If you enjoy the book, you can purchase a signed hardcopy from Pockets of…Publishing.

I am grateful for MaryAnn Clark (MAC, All Play Productions/*kids in the hive*) reaching out early on in pandemic to ask if I wanted to collaborate on a video for The Boy Who Was Fire. She is a joy and I look forward to many more cooperative playground outings!

I’m this many!

Yellow text against a turquoise background with dotted confetti reads “Lightbulb Heart is three!” An inset photo of Amber, a smiling white woman with curly hair wearing a yellow cardigan, who leans her head on her hand and elbows on a stack of children’s books. She sits on park steps and  is crowded by turquoise and coral cartoon balloons.
Photo credit: Suzuran Photography

Happy 3rd birthday to my story baby, Lightbulb Heart!

Birthday #2 was rightfully sidelined by pandemic. I consoled myself that I had at least gotten to eat cupcakes and read aloud with kiddos at the Paper Bag Princess events at Epic Books.

This last year has been hard for us all, and I’m taking a moment to mark some of the hurdles, disappointments, and joys I’ve encountered with my little biz child. I started a YouTube channel and more intentionally locally lending my library, wrote (and rewrote) a ton, made some noise for local equity and access orgs, and began a couple of local and cross-border collaborations that have been incredibly rewarding – one of which you’ll get to see the fruits of on March 20, so stay tuned!

I’m so grateful for all of the caregivers and teachers who entrusted their kiddos to me over Zoom, FaceTime, MarcoPolo, Messenger, and YouTube. You have been a real source of solace and purpose for me this last year and I cannot thank you enough!

I also could not have gotten through all of these months of isolation without the beautiful people of A Shared Table’s Storylab who kept me inspired, making, and going. 🥰

I’m taking a breath, blowing out some candles, and on to year 4!