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Orca Awards to December 2020

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You Hold Me Up / Ki Kîhcêyimin Mâna
Dual Language (English & Plains Cree)
By (author): Monique Gray Smith Illustrated by: Danielle Daniel Translated by: Mary Cardinal Collins
9781459821750 Hardcover, Picture book, Paper over boards Cree, English, Translated from: English Juvenile: Age (years) from 3 - 5, Grade (CAN) from P - K, Grade (US) from P - K, Reading age from 3 - 5 JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Emotions & Feelings Sep 04, 2018
$19.95 CAD
Active 9 x 9 x 0.38 in | 380 gr 32 pages full color images FSC certified – mixed sources C016245 Orca Book Publishers
CCBC Best Books 2018, Commended Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award 2018, Short-listed Quill & Quire's kidlit and YA Books of the Year 2017, Commended AICL's Best Books 2017, Commended Resource Links The Year's Best  2017, Commended Bank Street College Best Children's Books of the Year starred selection 2018, Commended Global Read Aloud  2018, Commended CCBC Best Books  2018, Commended Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award 2018, Short-listed CCBC Best Books for Kids & Teens 2019, Commended TD Summer Reading List 2020, Commended
We hold each other up.

This vibrant picture book, beautifully illustrated by celebrated artist Danielle Daniel, encourages children to show love and support for each other and to consider each other's well-being in their every-day actions.

Consultant, international speaker and award-winning author Monique Gray Smith wrote You Hold Me Up to prompt a dialogue among young people, their care providers and educators about Reconciliation and the importance of the connections children make with their friends, classmates and families. This is a foundational book about building relationships, fostering empathy and encouraging respect between peers, starting with our littlest citizens.

Orca Book Publishers is proud to offer this picture book as a dual-language (English and Anishinaabemowin) edition.

Monique Gray Smith is a mixed-heritage woman of Cree, Lakota and Scottish ancestry and a proud mom of twins. Monique is an accomplished consultant, writer and international speaker. Her first novel, Tilly: A Story of Hope and Resilience, won the 2014 Burt Award for First Nations, Métis and Inuit Literature. Monique and her family are blessed to live on Lekwungen territory in Victoria, British Columbia. For more information, visit

Danielle Daniel is the author and illustrator of Sometimes I Feel Like a Fox, winner of the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award, a finalist for the First Nation Communities Read Award and the Blue Spruce Award and a New York Public Library's Most Notable Books of 2015. Danielle is currently working on two novels and completing an MFA in creative writing through UBC. She writes and paints in Sudbury, Ontario. For more information, visit

 Key Selling Points
This vibrant picture book encourages children to
show love and support for each other and to consider each other’s well-being in
their everyday actions.
You Hold Me Up /Ki Kîhcêyimin Mâna is one of five English/ Plains Cree books being published by Orca this season
Text is written in both English and Plains Cree
Monique Gray Smith wrote this book to prompt a dialogue about Reconciliation and the importance of the connections children make with their friends and families
Monique Gray Smith is an award-winning author of
Cree, Lakota and Scottish ancestry.
Debbie Reese (American Indians in Children’s Literature) calls You Hold Me Up “heartwarming…the illustrations reflect Native
people in the present day.”

Kirkus Reviews calls You Hold Me Up “calming,positive, and serenely affirmative.”

Marketing and Promotional Plans

Print and online advertising campaigns

Promotion at national and regional school, library and trade

Extensive ARC distribution, including NetGalley

Blog and social media promotion

"You Hold Me Up is a gentle but effective way to introduce the topic of Reconciliation to students of all ages." - ETFO Voice

"You Hold Me Up is a welcome addition to the ongoing conversations around healing and rebuilding relationships…Gentle, relevant and never heavy-handed, this book serves both as a quiet lullaby and a starting point for discussions on empathy, community and wellness." - Canadian Children's Book News

"A seemingly simple picture book that conveys a valuable message for all ages…The distinctive and soft illustrations by Daniel enhance the positive message by Smith about the power of companionship, compassion, respect and togetherness…This quiet book has a deep beauty and a universal message. " - Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award Jury

"Ideal for early readers by themselves, for lap-sitting, or as a read-aloud." - Canadian Literature

"A strong and powerful message that even the youngest reader can understand...Very timely message indeed." - Youth Services Book Reviews

“Warm illustrations help to expand the brief text.” - The Horn Book Online

“A lovely meditation on compassion and respect...A strong sense of community runs through the poetic text and is warmly depicted in Daniel’s stunning watercolour paintings.” - 49th Shelf

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Also Available

You Hold Me Up Monique Gray Smith 9781459814479 $19.95 CAD Oct 31, 2017
Speaking Our Truth Monique Gray Smith 9781459815834 $29.95 CAD Sep 19, 2017
My Heart Fills With Happiness Monique Gray Smith 9781459809574 $10.95 CAD Mar 01, 2016


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