The Manitoba Young Readers’ Choice Awards aims to promote reading and Canadian literature by giving young Manitobans in Grades 4 – 6 the opportunity to vote for their favourite Canadian book from an annual preselected list, which is separated by age into the Northern Lights List and the Sundog List. Voting for the 2021 MYRCA winner will be open next spring.

IN THE KEY OF NIRA GHANI by Natasha Deen (Running Kids Press) has been nominated for the Northern Lights List: It isn’t easy to be the only Guyanese girl in school. All Nira wants to do is immerse herself in music, but her parents don’t think music is the right path for her. After Nira auditions for a jazz band at school she discovers that sometimes life doesn’t work out the way you hope it will, but that there are always other paths available to take.

Award-winning author Natasha Deen spent the first part of her life in Guyana, then her family moved to Calgary, Alberta, which she found terribly exciting until her first minus-forty-degree winter day, at which point she began to question the sanity of the grown-ups around her. She currently lives in Edmonton, Alberta with her husband, dogs, and cats, and regularly entices the muses to her office with offers of cupcakes and tea. Natasha is represented by Amy Tompkins.

MYA’S STRATEGY TO SAVE THE WORLD by Tanya Lloyd Kyi (Puffin Canada) has been nominated for the Sundog List: 12-year-old Mya leads the social justice club at school. When she grows up she’s going to work for the United Nations and save the world. She also desperately wants a cell phone, but her parents keep saying no. When Mya’s efforts to prove that she’s responsible enough to have a cell phone gets in the way of saving the world she needs to make some hard choices.

Tanya Lloyd Kyi has worked as a typesetter, graphic designer and photo editor before pursuing writing full-time. She is the author of many non-fiction titles, including Shadow Warrior, recently nominated for the ALA’s Amelia Bloomer Project List and DNA Detective, shortlisted for the OLA Red Maple Award and the Red Cedar Award. Her published novels for young readers include Truth, My Time as Caz Hazard, Anywhere but Here, which was praised by Kirkus as having a main character whose “voice is convincingly filled with a combination of angst and nonchalance,” and The Prince of Pot. Tayna is represented by Amy Tompkins.

To see the full list of honorees, please visit: