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Larry Verstraete

2009

Writer and educator Larry Verstraete (B.Sc., M.Ed) lives in Winnipeg. A former teacher with 30 years of experience, he began writing for youngsters over 20 years ago while still teaching. Now a full time writer, he is the author of twelve non-fiction books for young people.

The roots of Larry’s writing lie deep in his own personal experiences. As a youngster, he had a strong interest in true adventure stories and read widely from this genre. In high school, and later in university, science became a major focus. His Master’s thesis focused on establishing ways of making science more relevant to students, a goal he still pursues through his writing today. These elements – true adventure and science – can be seen, sometimes together, in the subjects he explores in his books, and also in his style of writing. Five of Larry’s published works are on scientific themes and many of his books utilize, to varying degrees, a narrative non-fiction writing style that engages youngsters with captivating and memorable material. 

An active promoter of books and literacy, Larry is a frequent visitor to schools and libraries where he shares his enthusiasm for science and writing with students, teachers and parents. He has also presented at conferences and festivals such as Calgary’s Wordfest, Winnipeg’s International Children’s Festival, and Thin Air, The Winnipeg International Writers Festival. As well, Larry has toured with TD Canadian Children’s Book Week and in connection with B.C.’s Red Cedar, Ontario’s Silver Birch, and the Maritime’s Hackmatack Children’s Choice Award. A seasoned public speaker, Larry gives readings and workshops students say are ‘cool’ and ‘funtastic’ and which teachers and librarians describe as ‘riveting’, ‘engaging’, ‘informative’ and ‘highly recommended’.

Phone number:
204 256 2756

Publications

Surviving the Hindenburg. Sleeping Bear Press, 2012
Case Files: 40 Murders and Mysteries Solved by Science. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 2011
S is for Scientists: A Discovery Alphabet. Sleeping Bear Press, 2010
At the Edge: Daring Acts in Desperate Times. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 2009
G is for Golden Boy: A Manitoba Alphabet. Sleeping Bear Press, 2009
Lost Treasures: True Stories of Discovery. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 2006
Survivors: True Stories of Death-Defying Escapes. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 2003
Extreme Science. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 2000
Accidental Discoveries: From Laughing Gas to Dynamite. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 1999
Whose Bright Idea Was It?. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 1997
Mysteries of Time. Toronto: Scholastic Canada Ltd., 1992
The Serendipity Effect. Scholastic Canada Ltd., 1988

Awards

Shortlisted, Silver Birch Award for Non-fiction for Case Files: 40 Murders and Mysteries Solved by Science, 2013
Shortlisted, Hackmatack Children's Choice Award for Case Files: 40 Murders and Mysteries Solved by Science, 2013
McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award - Younger Category for S is for Scientists: A Discovery Alphabet, 2012
Shortlisted, McNally Robinson Book for Young People - Older Category for Case Files: 40 Murders and Mysteries Solved by Science, 2012
Selected, Outstanding Science Trade Book for Students K-12 by NSTA & Children's Book Council for S is for Scientists for S is for Scientists: A Discovery Alphabet, 2011
Silver Birch Award for Non-fiction for At the Edge: Daring Acts in Desperate Times, 2010
Shortlisted, McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award - Older Division for At the Edge: Daring Acts in Desperate Times, 2010
Shortlisted, McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award - Younger Category for G is for Golden Boy, 2010
Shortlisted, Rocky Mountain Children's Choice Award for Lost Treasures: True Stories of Discovery, 2008
Shortlisted, Hackmatack Children's Choice Award for Lost Treasures: True Stories of Discovery, 2008
McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award - Older Category for Lost Treasures: True Stories of Discovery, 2007
Red Cedar Award (non-fiction) for Survivors: True Death-defying Escapes, 2006
Silver Birch Award (non-fiction) for Survivors: True Death-defying Escapes, 2004
Shortlisted, Norma Fleck Award for Non-Fiction for Accidental Discoveries: From Laughing Gas to Dynamite, 1999
Eligible for National Public Readings Program :
No