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Tundra Book Group Fall 2022

If I Had a Gryphon
By (author): Vikki VanSickle Illustrated by: Cale Atkinson
Vikki VanSickle ,

Illustrated by :

Cale Atkinson


Tundra Books



Product Form:


Form detail:

Paperback , Trade


Children: Age (years) 3 - 7, Grade (US) P - 2
Sep 06, 2022
$11.99 CAD


9in x 9 x 0.17 in | 0.36 lb

Page Count:

32 pages


Tundra Books
JUVENILE FICTION / Animals / Dragons, Unicorns & Mythical
Blue Spruce Award 2016, Nominated Chocolate Lily Award 2017, Nominated Rainforest of Reading Award 2016, Nominated Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards 2017, Short-listed Shining Willow Award 2017, Short-listed
A new trade paperback format for this bestselling pet book with a mythological twist! A fun and funny read-aloud about the perils of mythological pet ownership, and an ode to the humble hamster.

Sam just got a hamster for a pet. She’s not really impressed. The hamster isn’t very exciting — he mostly eats and sleeps and gets his shavings wet. BORING! After reading a book about mythological creatures, Sam gets some ideas for more exciting pets. But she soon realizes that taking care of these magical beasts might not be as wonderful as she thought. Unicorns are shy, gryphons scare the dogs at the dog park and having a fire extinguisher handy at all times makes dragons seem like an awful lot of work. Maybe the hamster really is the best pet for her. A nice, safe pet…right? 

If I Had a Gryphon is a raucous rhyming read-aloud about fantastical beasts in everyday situations — and the increasingly beleaguered heroine who has to deal with them.

NEW FORMAT OF A SUCCESSFUL HC & BB: With sales grossing nearly 30,000 across both formats, we are excited to reintroduce this magical tale for young readers.

A GREAT CONVERSATION STARTER for kids/parents to talk about getting a pet.

VISUALLY CAPTIVATING: Cale Atkinson’s art is bright, cheerful and very appealing to young readers.

IMAGINATION: This book will spark the imagination of readers and is a great springboard for lively discussions.

UNICORNS! Everyone loves unicorns and there’s a unicorn in this book.

VIKKI VANSICKLE is the author of a number of acclaimed novels for children including Words That Start With B, Summer Days, Starry Nights and the award-winning The Winnowing. She has also written several adorable picture books such as If I Had a Gryphon, Teddy Bear of the Year and Anonymouse. Vikki started her career as a bookseller at The Flying Dragon, and she now balances her writing career with her job as Marketing Director at Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers. 

Author Residence: Toronto, ON

Author Hometown: Woodstock

CALE ATKINSON is an illustrator, writer and animator living lakeside with his family in Kelowna, British Columbia, whose books include Sir Simon: Super Scarer, Where Oliver Fits, Monsters 101, Unicorns 101, Simon and Chester: Super Detectives! and Simon and Chester: Super Sleepover!, to name a few. Cale is assisted in his artistic endeavors by Charlie, a wise and noble floof.

Illustrator Residence: Kelowna, BC

Author Website: www.vikkivansickle.wordpress.com ; www.caleillustration.blogspot.com

Author Social Media: @vikkivansickle (Twitter) / @2dCale (Twitter)

One of Book Riot’s 50 Must-Read Fantasy Books for Kids, 2018
One of Book Riot’s 38 Children’s Book Gift Ideas for Clueless Grown-Ups, 2018
One of CCBC’S Best Books for Kids & Teens (Spring 2019)

PRAISE FOR If I Had a Gryphon:

“Just right after all. VanSickle delivers lean, bouncy verse and an impressive array of offbeat creatures, while Atkinson’s illustrations are bold and hint at dynamic motion.”—Kirkus Reviews

“VanSickle’s rhymes are unflaggingly exuberant as the girl puts up with noisy harpies, biting chupacabras, and mischievous fairies, and Atkinson fills the pages with visual comedy.”—Publishers Weekly

“[T]he whimsical, rhyming story of a girl’s desire for the perfect pet is a fun and fabulous examination of being careful what you wish for and happy with what you have.”—Quill & Quire

"The humorous storyline, the strong rhyming scheme, and the bold illustrations by Cale Atkinson make If I Had a Gryphon a marvellous addition to the picture book genre. Sure to be a favourite among fantasy fans and those contemplating what their perfect pet might be—mythical or otherwise!”—CM Magazine

“[P]rovides a unique intro to the differences between myths and reality for little learners.” Teacher Librarian

“[P]rovides a unique intro to the differences between myths and reality for little learners.”

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