Ladner writer Alison Acheson has recently published her seventh book, The Cul-de-Sac Kids.
Illustrated by Elisa Gutiérrez and published by Tradewind Books, it is aimed at six-to nineyear-olds and is her sixth story for children.
The main characters, Kezie, Patrick and Jed, miss their friend Noli when she moves away. A single man with no children moves into the vacated house and they soon discover he is about to become a stepfather.
The kids develop some serious concerns about his ability to be a father: he can't play hockey, can't build a tent, can't even order the right sort of pizza. So they decide to put him through the paces of Dad School ... and they'll be the teachers.
Acheson's previous books range from a picture book, Grandpa's Music (about a young girl living with a Grandpa with Alzheimer's), to a young adult novel, Mud Girl (set on River Road), which was a Canadian Library Association Book of the Year finalist.
She recently took part in the TD Canadian Children's Book Centre Book Week tour in Ontario. Book Week, funded by TD Bank, saw two dozen children's writers, illustrators and storytellers spend a week in a province that is not home, touring schools and libraries.
Acheson says it was an amazing, magical week that took her from Ottawa and Toronto to St. Mary's and Kapuskasing, which was a particular thrill as that is her mother's far-north hometown, and not an easy place to visit.
She gave presentations on writing with humour, as The Cul-de-Sac Kids is her first overtly humourous work, as well as a presentation for teens on "Careers in the Arts." After cobbling together a career that includes writing as well as editing, and teaching all ages, from UBC students to the South Delta homeschooling community, she is quite certain that selfemployment in the arts is not only a possibility, but a real path in a changing economy.
A book signing will take place at Black Bond Books in Ladner this Saturday, July 14, from noon to 3 p.m.