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Philippa Dowding
Toronto based JK-7 author available for school and library presentations

Authors’ Booking Service is pleased to announce that author Philippa Dowding is scheduling visits in the Greater Toronto Area. She’s open to visiting other southern and central Ontario towns and cities as well, as long as there is public transit (or a good driver) from Toronto.
Philippa would be delighted to visit your school, library, bookstore or other event. Her rate is $250 per session, $450 for two sessions or three for $650 + travel expenses outside GTA (for example, GO Bus and GO Train). She is happy to visit with an entire school in just a few short hours. Philippa is a member of TWUC, so discounts are available.
Philippa’s first book, 
The Gargoyle in My Yard, was nominated for an SYRCA Diamond Willow Award 2011. Her second book, The Gargoyle Overhead, was an OLA Silver Birch Express Nominee for 2012. Her third book, The Gargoyle at the Gates, has been nominated for the Diamond Willow, Hackmatack, Silver Birch Express and Red Cedar Awards 2014, and was named a White Raven Book 2013 by the International Youth Library in Munich. The three books in Lost Gargoyle Series are set in Toronto and medieval Europe, and explore themes of homelessness, poverty, friendship, kidnap, escape and courage.

Her fourth book and fifth books, The Strange Gift of Gwendolyn Golden, and Jake and the Giant Hand, are both available from Dundurn Press in 2014.

Here are a few comments from Principals, Teachers and Librarians on Philippa’s school visits:

Thank you so much for a wonderful presentation! You are very inspiring and engaging. The students loved your stories—we are new fans!” Evelyn Reiss, Principal/Teacher, The Claremont School, Toronto

Philippa read to over 100 children…her book engaged children of all ages, from kindergarten students to grade six. Our library purchased several copies, and they have been in constant circulation ever since. The grade four class enjoyed it so much, that it inspired the students to write a play which they performed at their year-end concert. I’m sure students will enjoy hearing Philippa read “The Gargoyle in My Yard” and “The Gargoyle Overhead”, in any library setting.” –Robert Aucoin, TDSB Librarian

My students were enthralled by the story, and truly enjoyed hearing Philippa read, every week. Many of the children bought the books and finished reading the stories on their own. I would highly recommend her for other classrooms. Children really enjoy the books, and the important message of tolerance and inclusion that they bring.”—Sylvain Milhomme, TDSB Teacher, grades 4/5


Published Works

Jake and the Giant Hand, Dundurn Press, Sept. 2014

The Strange Gift of Gwendolyn Golden, Dundurn Press, 2014
The Gargoyle at the Gates, Dundurn Press, 2012
The Gargoyle Overhead,  Dundurn Press, 2010
The Gargoyle in My Yard, Dundurn Press, 2009

Awards and Nominations

For The Gargoyle at the Gates
Shortlisted for: Silver Birch Express 2014, Diamond Willow Award 2013, Hackmatack Award 2013, Red Cedar Award 2014, Cooperative Children’s Book Centre 2014
Named a White Raven 2013 book by the International Youth Library in Munich
Starred Review in The Canadian Children’s Book Centre Best Books for Kids & Teens 2013
A Resource Links Best of 2012 Book

For The Gargoyle Overhead
Short-listed for the 2012 Silver Birch Express Award
Resource Links Best of 2010
A Canadian Children’s Book Club selection, 2010

For The Gargoyle in My Yard
Short-listed for the 2011 SYRCA Diamond Willow Award
A Canadian Children’s Book Centre BEST BOOK choice, 2010
CNIB audio book
Resource Links Best of 2009

Presentation Details

Grades JK/SK: short, 10-15 minute reading from one of the books in the Lost Gargoyle series. We talk about scary things (like gargoyles) and not scary things, like making friends.

Grades 1, 2: @ 30-40 minutes, we look at powerpoint and textbook pictures of medieval gargoyles, followed by a short reading and Q&A about writing and reading. Interactive: children get to talk, walk, dance and giggle like gargoyles through much audience participation. I’ll play the gargoyle shuffle on guitar (teachers have been known to dance, too)!

Grades 3-7: 45-55 minutes, includes powerpoint presentation, textbook images, a gargoyle puppet, music, and author reading. I can read from the Lost Gargoyle series, where we will talk about the gargoyles, medieval times, loneliness, friendship, inclusion and difference and more.

For older kids (grades 5-7), I can read from The Strange Gift of Gwendolyn Golden, and we talk about becoming a teenager, gifts/talent, friendship, community, parents, siblings and families, bullying, loss and more.

Any presentation includes lots of audience participation, a Q&A, and a lively discussion about writing, becoming a writer, how-to and more.

I will present to:
Grades JK - 7
Any group size, from 20-200+
I love working with kids in a library or classroom, but a gym, outdoor event or anything else is fine, too.
I require:
A table, a laptop, a projector and screen or appropriate surface for PowerPoint (I will bring a memory key). If I can borrow your guitar that’s great, too.