A chance encounter between an eight-year-old schoolgirl from Guelph, Ontario, and mega-selling kids’ author Robert Munsch has led to the publication of Braids, a new book by the beloved storyteller. According to a report in The Toronto Star, Munsch met Grade 3 student Taya Kendall at a reading last January at the Guelph Public Library:
The famed Canadian children’s author was struck by the girl’s resemblance to a character in one of his unpublished stories, about a girl who reluctantly allows her hair to be braided but is ultimately pleased with the result. Munsch granted Taya permission to use the story in the school newspaper she had launched earlier that month at Sir Isaac Brock Public School.
Now, a new edition of the work, published in partnership with New Internationalist magazine, and featuring 28 illustrations by Taya’s classmates, is being sold for $10 through the magazine’s web site and at select retailers across the country, including Mabel’s Fables, Parentbooks, Ella Minnow, and Treasure Island Toys. Proceeds are going to the Children of Bukati, a charity that supports more than 650 AIDS/HIV orphans in Kenya.
The Star goes on to suggest that Braids could be the only new title from Munsch for some time. The 64-year-old author suffered a stroke last August and has yet to return to writing.
(Thanks to Canadian Magazines for the tip.)