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Alison McLennan
Kinder- Grade 2

Alison McLennan was a terrible creative writer as a child, but adored reading and volunteering in her school library. After prancing about on stages as an actor and singer for many years, she rediscovered her love of books and became a children’s author. Her picture books include Hotel For Bees, Growing Pains, Great and Small, and Birdie Lights Up The World. Her first junior fiction novel is titled Calamity Jones: A Flamingo for Christmas. Alison loves presenting to school kids and sharing her love of reading and writing good stories. Her author talks and writing workshops are fun and interactive, and can be adapted for any age group. Alison will share with your students how she became an author, where she gets ideas from, what inspired her books and what themes they contain, and how easy and fun writing a story can be.

Books by Alison McLennan

Calamity Jones: A Flamingo for Christmas

Calamity by name, calamity by nature’ is how most adults see Calamity Jones. Calamity sees herself as a brilliant problem solver, even if nearly everything she touches turns to disaster. One morning, her family wake to find their pink plastic lawn flamingo, Fred, has been birdnapped. His cranky girlfriend, Mildred the cat, won’t stop meowling a horrid combination of meowing and howling so Calamity comes up with a crazy plan to find Fred. Along the way, Calamity Jones gets grounded twice (this will happen when you involve the police and attempt to borrow a real life flamingo from the local zoo). Finally on a last minute Christmas Eve shopping trip, Calamity sees a tv news crew and tells them the whole Fred and Mildred saga, in hopes it will flush out the flamingo thieves. On Christmas morning, her family wake to find Fred back on the front lawn with a happy cat by his side, a mysterious travel photo tied around his neck and 50 other pink plastic flamingos!

Birdie Lights Up the World

Best Suited 5-8 Years
Birdie the penguin believes she is the chosen one who lights up the world every night with her song. When the sky lights up without her one evening, she is left feeling lost and confused. Birdie tries to learn the work of other zoo animals, without much success – until her friends help her realize her true purpose.

Great and Small

Best Suited 4+ years
For a tiny unicorn, Eunice has big dreams. She really wants to compete in the Great Unicorn Games, but even with all the effort and practice she can muster, she’s just no competition for all these able-bodied athletes. That’s when the most wonderful idea turns into a truly great reality. A celebration of universal design and our unique abilities, Great and Small celebrates what unifies us – our glorious diversity.

Growing Pains

Best Suited 5+ Years
When Finn’s family plants a tree, he feels responsible for it, worrying that the sapling might be cold or hungry. He tries to share his breakfast with it and offers it his scarf. But when his nightlight goes out, it’s time for the tree to inspire Finn, as it stands tall and brave in the moonlight. A touching story of empathy and overcoming fears.

Hotel for Bees

Best Suited 5+ Years
Benji is scared of bees. His big sister, Charlotte, wants to teach him all about how special bees are. Together, they make a plan that might just change Benji’s mind.

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