books by Ken Hills



...Horse drawn milk and bread wagons, pommes de la route road hockey games, school and teacher challenges for these young, 11 and 12, pranksters, Saturday afternoon matinees for 10, doctors who came to the house and stayed for tea and many other aspects of the 40's are in evidence. This is a story with humour and drama, guaranteed to hold your interest to the end. Once started, young or old, you will be motivated to read to the end. Enjoy it for yourself and give it to your kids and have great discussions with them.

"We fell in love with the game of hockey by listening to the slap of the sticks on ice, the pinging of a near goal as the puck caromed off a goal post, the crunching of bodies against the rattling boards, and the oohs and aahs from a roaring crowd. But the turning point in our lives came not in winter. Rather it was in the late spring after a school year of tireless fun and relentless escapades in 1947. That was the year that changed our lives forever."

"I felt like an assassin in one of those Saturday matinee movies as I raised the barrel of my rifle and locked my sights on my target. My throat constricted and my mouth was dry. I wet my lips with my tongue, and placed my trigger finger carefully over the firing device. Alone on the back porch of my friend’s house, I angled the lethal firing arm up against the porch rail and fixed the target in my sights...."

"Even though this is a young adult novel, it sure brought back a ton of memories of my own childhood - well done." - Paul Faye, Brampton, Ontario



Summer Signs

I know it’s summer
when fat birds tug at slippery worms after a warm rain,
and Mrs. Mason shoos curious dogs from her manicured lawn,
when young ballplayers crowd the playing fields
and proud parents, dressed for the season,
he, with his fat belly, winter’s reservoir,
she, with painted fingers and toes and summer tan,
start sentences off with phrases like, "when I was his age,"
when the sun rises before I do
and airplanes from a nearby airport
interrupt long awaited conversations
with a seldom seen neighbour,
when the lake is dotted with billowy sails
and modern Ahabs, with radio transmitters and sonar devices,
crisscross the choppy Lake Ontario waters
in search of the great lost salmon.


Pizza Pete, the pigeon pet,
The strangest bird you ever met,
He struts 'round the plaza waiting for scraps
To fall from the hands of young gals and young chaps,
He hunts and he searches,
He will even perform
For a beak full of pizza
That's not even warm....

Illustration by Clif Train

"Your grandfather's book is amazing!"
- Ken's granddaughter Sarah's 6 year old friend

Read an excerpt from Ken's new adult novel, Requiem for Black Shoes


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