Award-winning YA author William Bell's Alma is the captivating story of a quiet girl who builds a friendship with a reclusive stranger.
Times have been tough since Alma's father died and she and her mother had to give up their farm and move into town. Luckily, Alma can always retreat into the books of her favourite author, R.R. Hawkins.
When Alma's teacher notices her lovely handwriting, she recommends Alma for a job transcribing letters for "Miss Lily," a reclusive old woman who has just arrived from Boston. Eventually, their mutual love of reading creates a strong friendship. Miss Lily lends Alma some of her favourite books, introduces her to calligraphy, and encourages her passion to write stories.
But who is this difficult and solitary old woman who reminds Alma of Dickens' Miss Havisham? And why is she so secretive about the part of her life she refuses to share? Could she be, as Alma begins to suspect, R.R. Hawkins herself? Alma is determined to find out.
This touching story explores the relationship between a blossoming writer and her mentor, and delves into the complicated dynamics of friendship and trust.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Lee wants to be a Tarantula - a member of the biggest, most powerful gang in his neighbourhood. But when his initiation goes wrong and the police catch him robbing an auto supply store, Lee's father sends him to live with his aunt in New Toronto.
Lee feels more lost than ever. His mother's death from cancer, and his father's constant absence working two jobs mean he has practically had to raise himself. But though he initially resists his Aunt Reena and the customers of Reena's Unique Café - a ragtag collection of the unusual, the unkempt and the deeply eccentric - Lee gradually learns to open himself up to his new surroundings. When Lee strikes up an unlikely friendship he is suddenly confronted by the ravages of violence, and is forced to face the consequences of his own aggression.
The Blue Helmet is a powerful portrait of one young man's struggle to come into his own, and the peace that comes from the achievement.
From the Hardcover edition.
An unusual mystery, a heartrending love story, this is an exciting plot-driven new book from leading Canadian YA author William Bell.
Fifteen-year-old Aidan has had more foster parents than he cares to remember. Careful to always keep his distance from those around him, and aided by a deep well of self-reliance and tenacity, he longs for the day that he's old enough to strike out on his own.
That day comes sooner than he could ever have imagined. On a miserable March afternoon, Aidan's life is changed so radically as to become unrecognizable. Through a near-tragic event in which he saves the life of a young boy, Aidan earns the gratitude and unqualified support of the child's grandfather, Mr. Bai, a man of wealth, great resources and shadowy influence. When asked how this man can help repay him, Aidan replies, "Can you make me disappear?"
With a new identity, an apartment, a job and finally a sense that he's crafting his own destiny, Aidan--now Julian Paladin--finds himself at the centre of forces he can't begin to understand. Who exactly is Mr Bai and who are the mysterious women that come and go without a trace in the apartment below? How did Julian find himself taking on a job surveilling a university student and her possibly abusive boyfriend? And, the most potent mystery of all: how can he ever be without the bewitching and beautiful Ninon, who reveals a dimension of life Julian had never thought possible.
Julian is part detective story, part romance, and part quest for a life of independence and meaning.
A sequel to the very popular Stones, Fanatics is a thrilling story in which the past and present collide in terrifying, riveting ways.
Garnet Havelock has just finished his apprenticeship in furniture-making, and has found a workshop for his new business in an old coach house on the isolated estate of recently deceased Professor Eduardo Corbizzi. Garnet signs a contract with the late professor's long-time companion, the eccentric and inscrutable Mrs. Valentina Stoppini, who presides over the mansion and is its only occupant. The terms of the deal are excellent, but there's a catch: Garnet has to repair the library's fire damage and keep all details about the estate confidential. Only after he agrees does Mrs. Stoppini inform him that the professor died of a seizure in the library under mysterious circumstances involving "an accident" and "a small fire." It isn't long before a distressing collision of past and present drags Garnet towards a horrifying truth he could never have imagined.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
When Jake Blanchard gets a job as a student set designer at the York School of Arts, it's an exciting first step towards realizing his dream of making movies. But soon enough he finds himself starring in a drama of his own creation. Nothing in Jake's life is the same after Vanni, a whip-smart, wisecracking Indian-Irish-Canadian joins his class, and after Jake meets the unforgettable Alba, who is as stunning as she is unattainable. Jake is tongue-tied around Alba and enlists Vanni's help. All of a sudden -- like the Shakespeare play Jake's school is putting on -- Jake finds himself entwined in a love triangle of sorts, complete with secrets and suppressed passions, contrived plots, miscues and misunderstandings. By the end, as in any good comedy, tensions are resolved and Jake's world has been re-made, though in a way he could not have anticipated.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Allie's life has just taken a turn for the worse; not only do her parents fight all the time, but she is failing more classes than not and now she thinks she might be pregnant. Unable to face up to her parents she decides to run away. She hooks up with her old friend Razz, a professional skateboarder, and goes on the road. Razz is ranked number one but constant confrontations with the challenger Slash put Allie in some dangerous situations. With the rivalry heating up, Razz and Allie head toward home--right into the path of a fierce tornado. To survive in the horror and destruction that follow the storm, Allie has to call on an inner strength she didn't know she had.
Also available in Spanish.
La vida de Allie ha dado un giro terrible. Sus padres se pelean todo el tiempo, le está yendo muy mal en la escuela y, por si fuera poco, piensa que tal vez esté embarazada. Incapaz de enfrentar a sus padres, decide irse de su casa y tomar la carretera con su amigo Razz, un patinador profesional de skateboarding. Cuando un enfrentamiento pone a Allie en peligro, Razz y Allie deciden volver, pero pasan justo por el camino de un tornado. Para sobrevivir al horror y la destrucción que sigue a la tormenta, Allie debe hacer uso de toda su fortaleza.
Allie's life has just taken a turn for the worse. Not only do her parents fight all the time, but she is failing classes at school and she thinks she may be pregnant. Unable to face her parents, she decides to run away. She hooks up with her friend Razz, a professional skateboarder, and goes on the road. When confrontations put Allie in danger, Razz and Allie head toward home and right into the path of a tornado. To survive the horror and destruction that follow the storm, she must find her inner strength.
The 1846 discovery of Neptune is one of the most remarkable stories in the history of science and astronomy. John Couch Adams and U.J. Le Verrier both investigated anomalies in the motion of Uranus and independently predicted the existence and location of this new planet. However, interpretations of the events surrounding this discovery have long been mired in controversy. Who first predicted the new planet? Was the discovery just a lucky fluke? The ensuing storm engaged astronomers across Europe and the United States. Written by an international group of authors, this pathbreaking volume explores in unprecedented depth the contentious history of Neptune's discovery, drawing on newly discovered documents and re-examining the historical record. In so doing, we gain new understanding of the actions of key individuals and sharper insights into the pressures acting on them. The discovery of Neptune was a captivating mathematical moment and was widely regarded at the time as the greatest triumph of Newton's theory of universal gravitation. The book therefore begins with Newton's development of his ideas of gravity. It examines too the mathematical calculations related to the discovery of Neptune, using new theories and tools provided by advances in celestial mechanics over the past twenty years. Through this process, the book analyzes why the mathematical approach that proved so potent in the discovery of Neptune, grand as it was, could not help produce similar discoveries despite several valiant attempts. In the final chapters, we see how the discovery of Neptune marked the end of one quest-to explain the wayward motions of Uranus-and the beginning of another quest to fill in the map and understand the nature of the outer Solar System, whose icy precincts Neptune, as the outermost of the giant planets, bounds.