Member Profile

Please note: All profiles are member-generated.

Shelley Tanaka

Shelley Tanaka

Shelley Tanaka was born in Toronto, Ontario. She has a B.A. (Hons) in English and German from Queen's University and an M.A. in Comparative Literature from the University of Toronto. For the past thirty-five years she has been the fiction editor at Groundwood Books, Canada's foremost children's book publisher, where she has worked with some of the country's finest children's book writers, including Martha Brooks, Alan Cumyn, Deborah Ellis, Sarah Ellis, Martine Leavitt and Tim Wynne-Jones. She has edited several dozen children's books, including thirteen Governor General's Award winners.
Shelley is the author of more than twenty books for children and young adults. She has won the Orbis Pictus Award, the Mr. Christie's Book Award, the Science in Society Book Award and the Information Book Award, and she has twice been nominated for the Deutsche Jugendliteraturpreis. Other honors include Texas Blue Bonnet runner-up, School Library Journal Best Books, ALA Notables and IRA Young Adults' Choice. She is also a translator (from French and German into English). Good for Nothing, by Michel Noel, was selected as Canada's translation choice for the Honour List named by the International Board of Books for Young People (IBBY).
Shelley teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts, in the MFA Program in Writing for Children and Young Adults. She lives in Kingston, Ontario. 



Lost Temple of the Aztecs (illus Greg Ruhl). Madison Press/Scholastic/Hyperion, 1998
The Buried City of Pompeii (illus Greg Ruhl). Madison Press/Scholastic/Hyperion, 1997
On Board the Titanic (illus Ken Marschall). Madison Press/Scholastic/Hyperion, 1996
Climate Change. Groundwood Books, 2006; 2012 (rev)
Secrets of the Mummies. Madison Press/Scholastic/Hyperion, 1999
In the Time of Knights. Madison Press/Scholastic/Hyperion, 2000
Attack on Pearl Harbor (illus David Craig). Madison Press/Scholastic/Hyperion, 2001
Mummies: The Newest, Coolest & Creepiest. Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2005
Amelia Earhart: Legend of the Lost Aviator (illus David Craig). Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2008
Nobody Knows. Groundwood Books, 2012
Climate Change. Groundwood Books, 2006/2012 (revised edition)


Silver Birch Award for On Board the Titanic, 1997
Mr. Christie's Book Award for Discovering the Iceman, 1997
Information Book Award for On Board the Titanic, 1997
Information Book Award for The Buried City of Pompeii, 1998
Science in Society Children's Book Award for Secrets of the Mummies, 1999
Orbis Pictus Award for Amelia Earhart: The Legend of the Lost Aviator, 2009
Eligible for National Public Readings Program:


Presentation Description

Can present on a variety of non-fiction topics (see I Was There series, Amelia Earhart, etc.) but these days focusing on climate change for high-school students, essay writing and Aztecs (500-year anniversary of Cortes in Mexico coming up in 2019). Writing workshops for high-school students. Rates negotiable.

Presentation Length:
45-60 minutes; workshops negotiable
MG/YA non-fiction, essay writing
5 and up
Audience Size:
Max. 30 for workshop