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Definitely Not James Herriot

by Jocelyn Reekie

ISBN: 978-1-896402-20-8



Definitely Not James Herriot is a loving ode to the animals, domestic and wild, who taught Jocelyn and her family that every critter has a personality of their own, animals are smarter than humans, and just cleaning the barn won’t get you into animal heaven.


“Wholesome is sometimes wrongly viewed as boring—that you need to be edgy to hold a reader’s attention and this book is proof that is completely un-true. Definitely Not James Herriot is a story told with heart and a healthy dose of laughter, and will keep readers turning pages until the very end and then still wanting more.” — Eileen Cook, author You Owe Me A Murder

"Of all the books I have been assigned to read in the past three years, this one was my favourite. The story held me to continue reading, each animal displayed its personality well, and the reactions of individual people were evident and logical ... My favourite animal has always been a well-trained German Shepherd dog, but this story took me beyond them, almost ready to adore other animals my children have lived with, like horses that the author nurtured."

                   - Evaluation,  Whistler Independent Book  Awards


Buy: Order from the author using the order button


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by Jocelyn Reekie

Highly recommended, CM Magazine
Top shelf fiction, Resource Links and VOYA
#1 BC Best Seller

Shortlisted for the 2004 Chocolate Lily Award
Shortlisted for the 2005 Red Cedar Award
For readers age 13+

In 1856, two of Tess Macqueen's brothers succumbed to a measles epidemic and in 1857 her  mother and youngest brother die of flu. The deaths leave Tess and her father reeling. When her uncle arrives from the colonies, where he's been for 10 years, for her mother's and brother's funeral, he reminds her father that when Tess's grandfather died six years before that, he inherited everything according to Scotland's Primogeniture law. He sells the Macqueen ancestral home out from under her father. Soon, Tess and her father find themselves en route to the colony of Vancouver’s Island in the New World. There, they hope to begin a new life. What they encounter when they land is a reality far different from what Tess's uncle led them to expect.


“Here is classic historical fiction by an immensely talented writer, who brings a fateful voyage across the oceans, and the fascinating world of the North American frontier, vividly to life.” — Raincoast Books


“Reekie’s account of one plucky girl’s journey to a new life is action-packed and chock-full of vivid images. Tess herself is a bold, immensely likeable character who all but leaps off the page, not unlike Avi’s Charlotte Doyle.

Highly Recommended. — CM (Canadian Materials Magazine)


One of the 26 books chosen from hundreds of submissions by Canadian and U.S. publishers as “the undisputed best fiction for middle school readers published in 2003 in the U.S.”

--VOYA (Voices of Youth Advocates) Magazine


“I am a Teacher-Librarian in North Vancouver and also teach a grade seven English class. I had heard many good things about Tess. Imagine my surprise and delight when I discovered my great-great-grandfather, George Robinson, bashing someone on the head in Nanaimo! My sister and I had done some research on our family and were aware of the incident, but it was quite exciting to find old George moving the plot of your novel along. You have a real feel for the period and must have done a huge amount of research!” -- Lori Staehling, Teacher-Librarian


“History, as I remember it from school, was the ultimate bore. Although we were a community of immigrants, nothing was taught of the immigration experience or the reasons behind it. What I wouldn’t have given for books like Tess that make people and places come alive. The details of the sea voyage and of early Vancouver Island are well done.”

-- Bill Valgardson, Chair of the Writing Dept., University of Victoria


“This is the way history should be told.” -- Monday Magazine

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Quadra Stories: Family, Friends & Flights of Fancy

By Heather Kellerhals-Stewart

A special valley on Quadra Island adjoining a long, tidal bay had, and still has, many stories to tell. I've recounted a few of them here that Chauntaluf, the farm lying within the valley, whispered and sometimes shouted in my ear.


I can only guess at the many tales throughout the ages - families feasting by the shoreline where the blackened shells still remain, weathered stakes protruding from the tide flats where people captured salmon, casts of shells found in an old gravel pit high above present day sea levels, old tools and china fragments found in our veggie garden


But I have been able to relate how our family came to the valley in the 1970's and what we learned there from animals both wild and tame. There are photos galore in the book. Some may make you laugh, others my remind you of a time long ago and the people who inhabited that space.

After living in a place for many years one naturally absorbs "the lay of the land" which may then be translated into tales factual or fictional. So, browse through this collection, pausing if something catches your fancy, like the picky Raven alights on a favoured tree. I hope you enjoy.


Oh No Noah!

By Heather Kellerhals-Stewart
Illustrated by Gwendolyn Monnet

Recommended for children age 4-7, CM Magazine

Nominated for the 2015 Chocolate Lily Award


Noah says he won't go to the dentist, won't eat his broccoli, won't clean up his room ... But if he has to, he has a funny, furry, finny solution to the problem.


A story that …engages and encourages the imagination. The illustrations are bright, colourful and detailed and invite the reader to explore each page. A non fiction component with descriptions of the animals mentioned in the story is included at the end of the book. This section includes photographs of the animals and children will enjoy gleaning facts to tell their siblings and friends. 

CM Magazine   

Kittens and Stars and Cats Who Meet Czar

Kittens and Stars and Cats Who Meet Czars

by Jocelyn Reekie

Preschool / Ages 1-3 

Highly recommended, CM Magazine

ISBN: 978-1-896402-13-0


Jocelyn Reekie’s Kittens and Stars and Cats Who Meet Czars is a beautifully illustrated counting book designed for preschool children. The central characters are cats and kittens that appear in increasing numbers on each successive page.


The counting is highly original and full of humour moving from one cat in a belfry ringing a bell to 10 cats who travel to meet three old-fashioned czars. In between, the readers see cats on a high barre above five posed ballerinas as well as seven cats in the kitchen accompanied by a single rooster. The introduction of unique ideas and the pairing of almost peculiar concepts is a refreshing change from more traditional counting books, particularly for adults as they interact with young children in various settings.


Reekie has created watercolor illustrations that are full of life and wonderful detailing, cleverly showcasing cats and kittens in various forms of naughtiness/mischief. The reader sees cats popping out of pieces of licorice, each piece individualized to great effect. On another page, five black and white cats with different coloured markings in their fur stare up at a bowl of multi-coloured fish. The illustrations work well in tandem with the text and are highly visible against the stark white background. The outcome is eye-catching, and there is a definite suggestion of style and artistry.


Harriet Minuk, librarian, Winnipeg, MB


Escape: An Anthology from North Vancouver Island and The Discovery Islands

Twenty-eight writers, from careful journeymen to exhilarated beginners, take readers on a swirling, bobbing ride through the unusual lives of islanders that’s not unlike a Boston whaler running Seymour Narrows. Campbell River Courier-Islander editor Neil Cameron provides a poignant and moving sketch of an encounter with an underage poacher; Peter Davies offers a window into the gritty side of island life with a graphic (that’s graphic as in illustrated) short story, Campbell Joe; Jocelyn Reekie recounts a diver’s encounter with a pod of killer whales. There are bush pilots dodging clag where the mountains disappear into the clouds and an angler who encounters an antlered deer in an offshore kelp bed; there are poems, stories, essays and memoirs — perfect for the night table and pre-sleep dipping.

                                                            Stephen Hume, Vancouver Sun

Dec. 14, 2012

Escape is currently unavailable for purchase.


Sunflowers Under Fire

by Diana Stevan

Finalist for the 2019 Whistler Independent Book Awards Honorable mention Writer's Digest Awards, 2020

Semi-Finalist for a 2019 Kindle Award


In 1915, Lukia Mazurets, a Ukrainian farmwife, delivers her eighth child while her husband is serving in the Tsar’s army. Soon after, she and her children are forced to flee the invading Germans. Over the next fourteen years, Lukia must rely on her wits and faith to survive life in a refugee camp, the ravages of a typhus epidemic, the Bolshevik revolution, unimaginable losses, and one daughter’s forbidden love.

BUY: On AmazonApple & moreKoboBarnes and Noble  

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Lilacs in the Dust Bowl

by Diana Stevan

A family saga, set during the Great Depression, when hope and opportunity clashed for all who tried to make a living off the land. 


Based on the true story of her grandmother’s trials, Diana Stevan continues the amazing tale of Lukia, a woman who showed—no matter what life threw her—where there’s a will, there’s a way.


Diana Stevan is the author of A Cry from The Deep, The Rubber Fence, and Sunflowers Under Fire, (a finalist for the 2019 Whistler Independent Book Award) and the novelette, The Blue Nightgown. A former family therapist, she is the mother of two daughters and lives with her husband Robert in West Vancouver and on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

BUY: On AmazonApple & moreKoboBarnes and Noble  

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