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I Know Here

Written by Laurel Croza

Illustrated by Matt James

  • 40 Pages
  • 9781554983933
  • 9.125" x 7"
  • Reading age from 4 to 7
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Art & Architecture
  • JUVENILE FICTION / People & Places / Canada / General
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Social Situations / New Experience


Publication Date October 01, 2013

The little girl in this story lives in a trailer near a forest in Saskatchewan, where her father is building a dam. She knows and loves everything about the place, but the dam is nearly finished, and when summer comes the family will move to Toronto - a city marked by a big red star on the map at school.

“Have the people in Toronto seen what I've seen?” the little girl asks, thinking of her road, her school, the forest where she plays hide-and-seek and where the wolf howls at night, the hill where she goes tobogganing in winter… And with her teacher's help, she finds a way to keep everything she loves about home.

This simple, beautifully written story, complemented by Matt James's vibrant, imaginative illustrations, will resonate deeply with anyone who has had to leave their home for a new place

Winner of the Ezra Keats New Writer Award 2011

Winner of the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Excellence in Children's Literature 2010

Winner of the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award 2011

Short-listed for the Governor General's Literary Award for Children's Illustration 2010

Selected for the CCBC Choices 2011

Selected for the Horn Book Magazine Best Books of 2010 2010

Selected for the Quill & Quire Books of the Year 2010

Selected for the USBBY Outstanding International Books Honor List 2011

Selected for the Capitol Choices 2011

Selected for the CCBC Best Books for Kids & Teens 2011

Short-listed for the Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award 2011

Short-listed for the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Award 2011

Short-listed for the TD Canadian Children's Literature Award 2011

Short-listed for the Red Clover Award 2011


Laurel Croza
Laurel Croza lived near four dam sites when she was a child, moving nine times and attending six schools before she was fourteen. I Know Here, her first picture book, illustrated by Matt James, is based on her memories of leaving Saskatchewan for Toronto. It won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, the Ezra Jack Keats and New York Public Library New Writer Award, and the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award, among many other accolades. Laurel’s second book, From There to Here, picks up where the first left off. She lives with her family in Toronto.

Matt James

Matt James is a noted painter, illustrator and musician. His books have won many awards, including the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award (I Know Here, written by Laurel Croza) and the Governor-General’s Award for Children’s Illustration (Northwest Passage). Matt lives in Toronto.



"Don't miss the endpapers, a map of the central provinces, embellished with a child's priorities." Horn Book

"...will resonate deeply with anyone who has had to move as a child." Guelph Mercury

"...a beautifully wrought tale..." Globe and Mail

"Kids facing their own wrenching upheavals will take heart in the girl’s celebration of her roots and what she knows about herself and the world, all of which give her strength to move on." Booklist

"...simple and profound..." New York Times Book Review

"This little book is not only a poignant treatment of home and stability making way for the unknown, it's a testament to the resilience of children. Laurel Croza, in her text, gives us a worthy protagonist as well as a glimpse of Canadiana most city kids will never experience ... it's a book worth buying. And sharing." Montreal Gazette

"...a great tool for engaging students in discussions about Canadian geography, nature, dams, preservation of wilderness areas, change and descriptive writing." CM Magazine

"Croza conveys beautifully the precise, multi-sensual awareness and familiarity that comes in childhood, in which knowledge of place can seem an inalienable part of identity." Toronto Star

"The simple, straightforward text is spot-on in capturing the child's sensibilities and feelings...A regional look at a universal slice of childhood." SLJ

"...a simple, achingly beautiful picture book." Quill & Quire

"...poignant..." Teaching by the Book

". . . will resonate with readers who have also had to leave the place they know and love. For readers who haven’t had to move, the story will help them appreciate the place they know all the more." Worlds of Words, The University of Arizona College Education Review