Chil­dren’s au­thor part of Word On The Street lineup

KAL­LIE GE­ORGE THE WRITER OF ‘HEARTWOOD HO­TEL’ SERIES

Lethbridge Herald - - GREAT READS | SATURDAY BOOKS - Peyton DeWit

Mark your cal­en­dar for Sept. 22, this year’s date for The Word On The Street — the Leth­bridge Pub­lic Li­brary’s an­nual lit­er­ary fes­ti­val. This year will mark its eighth year, and prom­ises an­other great lineup of au­thors, panel dis­cus­sions, demon­stra­tions and work­shops, live mu­sic, ac­tiv­i­ties, a marketplace and food trucks. This year we also wel­come chil­dren’s au­thor Kal­lie Ge­orge.

Ge­orge’s “Heartwood Ho­tel” series fol­lows the life of a mouse named Mona on her ad­ven­tures in the per­fectly cozy Heartwood Ho­tel. Mona works at the Heartwood Ho­tel with other staff and a colour­ful cast of guests and visi­tors. All small crea­tures, from bunnies to bugs and all furry and feath­ery fowl in be­tween, are al­lowed to stay at the Heartwood Ho­tel, so long as they fol­low the rule: “We live by ‘pro­tect and re­spect,’ not by ‘tooth and claw.’”

The first in the series, “Heartwood Ho­tel: A True Home” tells the tale of Mona’s ad­ven­tur­ous jour­ney of find­ing the ho­tel and learn­ing about her fam­ily and her his­tory. Mona goes through all sorts of ter­ri­fy­ing es­capades in the for­est be­fore find­ing the warm and wel­com­ing Heartwood Ho­tel, a place that she can fi­nally call home.

“Heartwood Ho­tel: A True Home” is fol­lowed by “Heartwood Ho­tel: The Great­est Gift.” Set dur­ing the an­i­mals’ ver­sion of Christ­mas hol­i­days, Mona learns about gifts and the im­por­tance of help­ing oth­ers. New char­ac­ters are in­tro­duced and adventure en­sues as the Heartwood Ho­tel, and its guests, ex­pe­ri­ence win­ter. Hi­ber­na­tion has started, and those not sleep­ing need to stay warm and fed dur­ing the cold, snowy nights of the sea­son.

An­i­mals are com­mon char­ac­ters in chil­dren’s sto­ries and fit per­fectly in the world of the Heartwood Ho­tel. Mona is a cute lit­tle mouse and see­ing her grow in the sto­ries is mov­ing and en­cour­ag­ing. All the char­ac­ters grow through­out the two tales. Each has their own back­ground story and spe­cial place and im­por­tance at the Ho­tel. They have a les­son to learn, and a role to play that con­trib­utes to each story.

Ge­orge does a won­der­ful job cre­at­ing a cozy world with adorable crea­tures and de­light­ful ad­ven­tures. In ad­di­tion to the Heartwood Ho­tel series, she also writes the “Mag­i­cal An­i­mal Adop­tion Agency” series.

Ge­orge cur­rently re­sides in Van­cou­ver, and will be vis­it­ing the Leth­bridge Pub­lic Li­brary on Sept. 22 as part of The Word On The Street. The fes­ti­val runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For more in­for­ma­tion on this year’s fes­ti­val, visit the­wor­don­thestreet.ca/leth­bridge.

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