Sunday, May 29, 2022

Two(!) new kids' books from Erin Silver: Sitting Shiva and Rush Hour

Sitting Shiva by Erin Silver

A little girl grieves the loss of her mother, but she can’t grieve alone.

When her friends and family arrive at her house to sit shiva, laden with cakes and stories, she refuses to come downstairs. But the laughter and memories gradually bring her into the fold, where she is comforted by her community. By the end of the book, she feels stronger and more nourished, and she understands the beautiful tradition. Then, when sees her father sitting alone, she is able to comfort him in his time of need. 

Sitting Shiva is a beautiful, heartfelt story about grief and loss, but also about comfort and community. It shows that no matter what religion you practice, we are all more similar than we are different.

A note from the author explains the ritual of sitting shiva, a seven-day period of mourning for the death of a family member observed in Jewish homes.

Shows great empathy for a child’s feelings when coping with loss. That Silver does this task in a unique and emotional way that manages to convey the traditions associated with the practice of sitting Shiva is admirable. Highly Recommended.” – CM: Canadian Review of Materials

“With its lovely, warm illustrations and perfectly pitched storyline, provides an accessible introduction to shiva for readers of all ages…A sensitive, powerful treatment of a child’s grief.” – Kirkus Reviews

“This poignant story about mourning and finding comfort in community is universally relatable.” – Booklist

“Having first seen Sitting Shiva in an early draft, I am totally tickled to see this great picture book finally in print – yay Erin!!! – Brian

Sitting Shiva is available from Orca Books here.

For information about submitting to Orca Books, see here.

Rush Hour: Navigating Our Global Traffic Jam by Erin Silver

Traffic. It's not only frustrating, it's hurting the planet.

Emissions from cars, buses, trucks and planes are one of the leading causes of pollution in North America. Today there are more cars clogging the roads than ever before. In Rush Hour, learn how traffic got so bad and some of the innovative ways it's being managed around the world. Discover what technological advances like talking cars and electric buses will mean for the future of traffic. 

Even though they can't drive yet, kids need to take control of the wheel. From walking to school, to carpooling with friends or petitioning the government, the next generation of drivers has to think differently about traffic and understand what they can do now to help protect the environment. And it starts with changing our habits, one less car ride at a time.

Rush Hour is available from Orca Books here.

For information about submitting to Orca Books, see here.

Erin Silver is a children’s author and freelance writer with nearly 20 years of professional industry experience. 

Erin’s work has appeared in Good Housekeeping, The Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star, Today's Parent, Chatelaine, and The Washington Post, among others.

Besides Sitting Shiva, Erin has three other children’s books out now: Just Watch Me (Common Deer Press), a middle grade novel about the perils of the online age; What Kids Did: Stories of Kindness and Invention in the Time of COVID-19 (Second Story Press), a nonfiction picture book about the amazing ways kids around the world helped during the pandemic; and Proud to Play (Lorimor), featuring outstanding Canadian LGBTQ+ athletes and allies who have made a difference. More books are on the way.

Erin has a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction from King's College in Halifax, a postgraduate journalism degree from Ryerson University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto. She's a member of IBBY, The Writers Union of Canada, CANSCAIP and SCBWI, and she’s a frequent guest speaker at Brian Henry’s one-day Kid Lit wo9rkshops and weekly classes. Visit Erin at

If you’re interested in writing Kid Lit, don’t miss the Writing for Children and for Young Adults workshop with Patricia Ocampo, senior editor at Kids Can Press, on Saturday, July 16, in Mississauga – see here. You can always find upcoming Kid Lit workshops and classes here {and scroll down).

See all of Brian’s upcoming weekly writing classes, one-day workshops, and weekend retreats here.

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