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News & Events

November 2018 - Good News!!

The Nova Scotia School Book Bureau, purchased a large number of The Land Beyond the Wall books to be distributed and used in Nova Scotia schools. This means that many children will be able to read and reflect on the story.
In related news, a paperback edition of The Land Beyond the Wall will be published in the Fall of 2019.

September 2018 - Personal Milestone

Veronika earned her Doctorate of Philosophy in Education from York University in Toronto. Her research focused on how children’s storytelling changes when told through multiple characters’ perspectives and it is combined with images, videos and sound, using digital technology. Veronika’s dissertation will be published online in March 2019.

A sample of the students’ work (that was done in collaboration with their teacher Mira Campbell) can be seen by clicking this link: bit.ly/TheCompetitionBook


May 2018

Veronika took a part in an exhibit of children’s book art at the Canadian Contemporary School of Art in Toronto. The CANSCAIP Art Show was in the School's art gallery, open to the public and also to students and parents. Original and digital artwork was exhibited.


April 2018

Book signing at the Early Literacy Learning Conference in Richmond Hill on April 17th. This conference is widely recognized as Canada's premier professional development experience for teachers of early childhood education.

February 2018 - OLA Super Conference

Veronika autographed The Land Beyond the Wall for the attending librarians. The OLA Super Conference event is the Canada’s largest library tradeshow. It attracts over 4400 librarians from across the country.


November 2017 - The Crane Girl homecoming - Japan Trip

The Crane Girl book finally came home and settled in the Osaka Public library. In Nara, it was magical to meet the dosojin statues that I painted in the story, not just one but a multitude.
Stone dosojins, commonly found in Japan, are believed to be guardians of the roads. They are often dressed in bibs and children honour them every January in a special celebration. In The Crane Girl story, the dosojin is keeping a close eye on Yoshiko, the heroine of the tale, when she leaves her village.

Japan Japan Japan
Japan Japan Japan


October 2017

Best Books!!

The Land beyond the Wall was included in the Best Books for Kids and Teens 2017, a magazine published by the Canadian Children’s Book Centre. The books are selected by expert committees of educators, booksellers and librarians from across Canada with focus on materials that will appeal to children.

September 2017 - The Word on the Street

Veronika presented at The Word on the Street Festival in Halifax, NS. The event took place in Halifax Central Library and was followed by book signing.

This festival celebrates authors, publishers, and booksellers for their contribution to the culture of literacy, ideas and imagination.
While in Halifax, Veronika did a radio interview with Wendy Bergfeldt at CBC in Cape Breton and CTV television interview with Heidi Petracek.

BookExpo 2017, New York BookExpo 2017, New York BookExpo 2017, New York


June 2017 - First Book Canada Reading Celebration

On June 16th Veronika presented her new book to students at St. Catherine of Siena School in Mississauga. The school has a large immigrant population and even the smallest children seemed to be engrossed in a story; one could hear a pin drop.


June 2017 - Book Signing

Veronika was signing copies of her new book, The Land Beyond the Wall, at Book Expo in New York City on June 2nd and 3rd, in the Javits Centre, located in midtown Manhattan.
BookExpo is the largest North American publishing event featuring the latest in print and digital book publishing.

BookExpo 2017, New York BookExpo 2017, New York BookExpo 2017, New York
BookExpo 2017, New York BookExpo 2017, New York BookExpo 2017, New York


April 2017

Sharjah Children's Reading Festival 2017

Veronika was invited to participate in the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival 2017, which took place April 19th – 29th, 2017 at the Expo Centre, Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates.

The Festival is a key event in Arab children’s publishing, hosts over 100 exhibitors specializing in children’s literature, and attracts more than 215,000 visitors with educational and fun-filled activities. There are workshops, author events and panel discussions. Sharjah is the cultural capital of the UAE and the festival is highly publicized. For more information about the festival click here.

Sarnia Sarnia Sarnia
Sarnia Sarnia Sarnia

Veronika was part of a panel discussing a topic which touches on her Doctoral research: The Digital Natives: (Writing for Children in the Digital Age) She visited students in Shining Star International School in Abu Dhabi and was delighted to realize that the children are really the same all over the world; they react the same way to the stories and laugh at the same things.

Another wonderful thing about the festival was the opportunity to meet and interact with other authors, artists and scholars from many different parts of the world who share the love of literature and are interested in children.

Sarnia Sarnia Sarnia


March 2017

Publishers Weekly magazine featured Veronika’s new book in their section, News from the North: March 2017, under the subtitle, ‘From the Iron Curtain to Trump’s Border Wall’.


February 2017 - Trip to Iceland...

Iceland Iceland
Iceland Iceland

On a trip to Iceland, Veronika incidentally discovered that her books were in the Reykjavik Public Library. It was amazing to think how far these books have travelled! So gratifying for an author to know that stories created in solitude, are now being read by children in Iceland!


May 2014

Need To Read Festival in Sarnia, Ontario

Veronika was invited to take a part in the ‘Need To Read Festival’ in Sarnia-Lambton County from May 5th to May 9th, 2014. The festival coincided with Education Week and Veronika visited many schools and libraries in the area.

Grand Bend students

Prior to her visit, the students in Great Bend School created wonderful images inspired by The Birdman book and created their own endings to some of the stories in the Easy-to-Read Spooky Tales - impressive work!!

Sarnia Sarnia Sarnia
Sarnia Sarnia Sarnia


April 2014

The Book & The Child
International Conference in Athens, Greece

The Book & Child Conference

Veronika was one of the presenters at the 2014 Child and the Book Conference which offers graduate/post graduate scholars the opportunity to present papers on their current research in the interdisciplinary field of children’s literature.

Above: Veronika with fellow Canadian presenters from York University, Dr. Peter E. Cumming and Dr. Karen A. Krasny.

Doctoral Award!!

Veronika received a Doctoral Award from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) of Canada. A thrilling award as this was a national competition.


April 2013

Great Summer Reads!!

Great Summer Reading

Easy-to-Read Wonder Tales are included in “Great Summer Reads” in Canadian Living lifestyle magazine.

Caught in action:
Children reading Spooky Tales!!

reading Spooky Tales! reading Spooky Tales! reading Spooky Tales!

First Book Canada

On Friday, April 12 Veronika will be the presenter at the First Book Canada event held at Sir Winston Churchill School in Brampton, Ontario.

First Book Canada provides new books to children in need, addressing one of the most important factors affecting literacy – access to books. An innovative leader in social enterprise, First Book Canada and First Book U.S. have distributed more than 100 MILLION free and low cost books to children in need and the programs that serve them through an extensive volunteer network. Veronika is honoured that First Book has invited her to participate and also that First Book Canada will be distributing her book to some very avid readers.

Battle of The Books

Veronika will be a visiting author, presenting at the Oakville Public Library at its annual Battle of the Books competition in April 2013.

Battle of the Books encourages team spirit, good sportsmanship and provides an opportunity for public libraries to work with community schools celebrating books and promoting an enthusiasm for reading!

Wonder Tales & Spooky Tales:
The Animated Series

Veronika’s Wonder Tales and Spooky Tales are in early development as an animated series. (It usually takes a long time before work is produced, but animators are currently working on one story, to create a sample episode.)

April 2012

Performance of Maiden of the Mist

Maiden of the Mist

On March 27th, 2012, the Greece Central School District held it's first annual Orff Festival of Music at the Athena Performing Arts Center in Greece, N.Y. The finale was a performance of Veronika Charles' book, Maiden of the Mist, by grades 4/5 from Craig Hill School under the guidance of their music teacher Susan D. Walsh. Narrators read the book out loud in front of large projections of the illustrations while the rest of the students performed the songs and the dance they have learned. They also improvised background music with their instruments and created sound effects, bringing the story to life.

Maiden of the Mist

The Orff system is a unique study of music, utilizing movement, speech, song and instruments. Students develop multi media approaches to each theme, based on their own interests


November 2011

2012 Great Book Award for Wonder Tales


The Canadian Toy Testing Council has awarded a 2012 Great Books Award for It's Not About The Apple, the first book in the Easy-To-Read Wonder Tales series.

The mission of the CTTC is to encourage the design, manufacture and distribution of toys and books sensitive to children’s needs, through independent evaluation.

For more information visit the the CTTC website.


2011 Aesop Accolades Honour Veronika Martenova Charles and David Parkins

The Aesop Award Committee of the Children’s Folklore Section of the American Folklore Society have announced the 2011 Aesop Awards. It’s Not About the Apple, It’s Not About the Crumbs, It’s Not About the Hunter, It’s Not About the Pumpkin, and It’s Not About the Rose, all by Veronika Martenova Charles and illustrated by David Parkins, are the recipients of the 2011 Aesop Accolades.

The Aesop Prize and Aesop Accolades are conferred annually by the Children’s Folklore Section of the American Folklore Society upon English language books for children and young adults, both fiction and non-fiction.

From the Award Committee...

"Perhaps the best aspect of the series is that it includes folklore in the repertoire of first literature available to young readers. As children grow and mature they will find that folk and fairy tales form the base of much of the body of literature they will be reading. The commitee would like to commend the publisher and author for this project that brings folklore into the realm of early reading literature and at the same time works in support of cultural consciousness."

For more information on the awards, please visit the American Folklore Society's website.


July 2011

The TD Summer Reading Club 2011

Join the club! - Two of Veronika's books have been selected for this year's reading club, Maiden of The Mist and Don't Go Near the Water!, from the highly popular Spooky Tales series. Visit the book club website to post your own review of the books and check out the complete reading lists.


2011 WLU Summer Institute - July 2011

Veronika will be one of the presenters at the National Council of Teachers of English WLU Summer Institute in Las Vegas, July 21-24, 2011. The NCTE is a professional association of educators in English studies. The Whole Language Umbrella provides a network for individuals and support groups to come together to discuss issues related to whole language theory, research, and pedagogy. For more information visit the NCTE website.


More Easy-To-Read Wonder Tales!!

Tundra Books will be publishing 5 more titles in the Wonder Tales series, written by Veronika Martenova Charles and illustrated by David Parkins. The new books will be:

It's Not About The Ball!
It's Not About The Straw!
It's Not About The Diamonds!
It's Not About The Tiny Girl!
It's Not About The Beanstalk!

The Easy-To-Read Wonder Tales series are books for fledgling readers that offer the enjoyment of a good story along with the thrill of accomplishment that comes from independent reading. Each book presents three different versions of a well known fairy tale. Click here for more on the first 5 books...


March 2011

Reading For The Love of It!

Reading for the love of it!

Veronika was one of speakers at the 35th Annual Language Arts Conference at the Sheraton Centre in Toronto, February 10 - 11, 2011. Her presentations focused on the use of fairy tales in the classroom as dynamic and engaging teaching tools for primary grades.

For more information or to download a program visit the conference website


January 2011

Bram Morrison Reads Spooky Tales!

RMW Kids Audio Books has posted video of popular children's performer Bram Morrison - of Sharon Lois & Bram - reading from the Spooky Tales book series. In the video above Bram reads from "Don't Go Near The Water!". He can also be found reading...

Don't Walk Alone At Night!
Don't Open The Door!
Don't Go In There!
Don't Go Into The Forest!


November 2010

Chapters Indigo book signing

Spooky Tales indeed!!

Veronika was on hand to sign copies of her Spooky Tales on Halloween itself at the grand opening of Indigo Books at the Erin Mills Town Centre, October 31. Thanks to everyone who came out.


October 2010

Ten Questions With Veronika!!

Open Book Toronto asked 10 questions of Veronika this month - read the results on their website. Open Book Toronto " celebrates and profiles Toronto’s nonstop literary scene, with a special focus on the books, authors and events coming out with Ontario's independent, Canadian-owned publishers."


July 2010

The TD Summer Reading Club 2010

Don't Go into the Forest has been selected as part of this year's TD Summer Reading Club.

TD Summer Reading Club

The goals of the TD Summer Reading Club are to encourage and strengthen the habit of reading for pleasure to create life-long learners, to increase children's reading skills and reduce summer learning loss. Visit the Reading Club website for more information.


February 2010

Two books from the Spooky Tales series appear on Ohio library's list of most popular books of 2009, right alongside of Captain Underpants series, Don't Go into the Forest! & Don't Walk Alone at Night!

October 2009

New Series ... Easy-To-Read Wonder Tales!!

Thanks to the success of the Spooky Tales series, Veronika has created a new series for beginning readers. In each book, Lily, Ben and Jake tell each other different and unusual versions of a well-known fairy tale. Written by Veronika Charles and illustrated by David Parkins, the first five books in the series will be published in Fall 2010 by Tundra Books. Stay tuned for more details!!

Meanwhile, The Birdman will be available this fall in paperback from the Scholastic Book Club.

The latest titles in the Spooky Tales series have been noted as The Canadian Children's Book Centre's Best Books of 2009. Don't Eat That!, Don't Enter the House!, Don't Forget!, Don't Talk to Strangers! and Don't Touch That! were all recognized in the "Beginning Readers’ Category (for kids aged 5-9) who are just learning to read. For more information on the Book Centre visit their website.

This is the Korean edition of Stretch, Swallow & Stare.

click to enlarge


Summer 2009

Agent 009 - The TD Summer Reading Club. Veronika Charles will be one of the visiting author & illustrators participating in the Toronto Public Library's Summer Reading Club. Times & dates follow below, visit the reading club website for more information...

Hospital for Sick Kids Library, July 14, 11am
Fairview Library
, July 15, 2pm
Jane Sheppard Library, July 18, 2pm
Northern District Library, August 12, 2pm
Reading Council OISE Conference, October 17, 9am

The Birdman has been nominated for a Golden Oak Award by the Ontario Library Association. The Golden Oak Award reading program provides an opportunity for new readers in adult literacy programs to read books chosen specifically for them. Winners will be announced at a luncheon June 11, 2009 at North York Central Library, Toronto. For more information visit the OLA website.


November 2008

Veronika Charles will be participating in the 2008 TD Canadian Children's Book Week, Nov 15 - 22, in Winnipeg. Organized by the Canadian Children's Book Centre, the event celebrates Canadian children's books and 'the importance of reading.

Public Appearances in & around Winnipeg:

Sun, Nov 16, Book Week Launch, Millenium Library, 2:00 pm
Tues, Nov 18, Portage La Prairie Regional Library, 1:00 PM
Wed, Nov 19, Pinawa Public Library, Pinawa, 7:00 pm
Thurs, Nov 20, Jake Epp Library, Steinbach, 10:00 am

For complete information about Book Week click here

Veronika at a recent booksigning

April 2008

More Spooky Tales Coming in 2008!! Tundra Books will publish 5 more enstallments in the Easy-To-Read Spooky Tales series in the fall of 2008. The new titles are:

Don't Eat That!
Don't Enter the House!
Don't Forget!
Don't Talk to Strangers!
Don't Touch That!

Stay tuned for more details...


December 2007

Veronika Charles on the big screen... Hey! What's That Sound? is featured in the Oscar nominated feature film comedy Lars and the Real Girl starring Ryan Gosling & Emily Mortimer, directed by Craig Gillespie. For more information about the film visit the official website.


November 2007

The Birdman has been nominated for a 2008 Silver Birch Award. The awards, organised by the Ontario Library Association and judged by children accross Ontario, are designed to encourage Canadian writing, Canadian authors, and the improvement of reading skills through participation. Visit the OLA website for more information.


2005 - Maiden of the Mist On Stage

The Stichting Educatieve Orkest Projecten in Rotterdam, Holland, used "Maiden of the Mist" as core material for their annual children’s music project. The culminating performance involved a symphony orchestra, a children's choir, an adult choir, as well as native dancers from North America, actors and storytellers. During the performance the book’s illustrations were projected on a gigantic screen, 9m x 12m in size, as a backdrop for the performers.

Maiden of the Mist Maiden of the Mist Maiden of the Mist
Maiden of the Mist Maiden of the Mist Maiden of the Mist

The performance was such a success, that other city in Holland, Noordwijk, inquired about permission to do a similar project with their students too.


Easy-To-Read Wonder Tales

New Book!!

The Land Beyond The Wall

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© copyright Veronika Martenova Charles. Artwork used by permission. Website by Hoffworks