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Showing 1 - 20 of 70 items
By Zalika Reid-Benta. 2019
Kara Davis is a girl caught in the middle -- of her Canadian nationality and her desire to be a… "true" Jamaican, of her mother and grandmother's rages and life lessons, of having to avoid being thought of as too "faas" or too "quiet" or too "bold" or too "soft." Set in "Little Jamaica," Toronto's Eglinton West neighbourhood, Kara moves from girlhood to the threshold of adulthood, from elementary school to high school graduation, in these twelve interconnected stories. We see her on a visit to Jamaica, startled by the sight of a severed pig's head in her great aunt's freezer; in junior high, the victim of a devastating prank by her closest friends; and as a teenager in and out of her grandmother's house, trying to cope with the ongoing battles between her unyielding grandparents. A rich and unforgettable portrait of growing up between worlds, Frying Plantain shows how, in one charged moment, friendship and love can turn to enmity and hate, well-meaning protection can become control, and teasing play can turn to something much darker. In her brilliantly incisive debut, Zalika Reid-Benta artfully depicts the tensions between mothers and daughters, second-generation Canadians and first-generation cultural expectations, and Black identity and predominately white society.
By Megan Coles. 2019
February in Newfoundland is the longest month of the year. Another blizzard is threatening to tear a strip off downtown… St. John’s, while inside The Hazel restaurant a storm system of sex, betrayal, addiction, and hurt is breaking overhead. Iris, a young hostess from around the bay, is forced to pull a double despite resolving to avoid the charming chef and his wealthy restaurateur wife. Just tables over, Damian, a hungover and self-loathing server, is trying to navigate a potential punch-up with a pair of lit customers who remain oblivious to the rising temperature in the dining room. Meanwhile Olive, a young woman far from her northern home, watches it all unfurl from the fast and frozen street. Through rolling blackouts, we glimpse the truth behind the shroud of scathing lies and unrelenting abuse, and discover that resilience proves most enduring in the dead of this winter’s tale.By turns biting, funny, poetic, and heartbreaking, Megan Gail Coles’ debut novel rips into the inner lives of a wicked cast of characters, building towards a climax that will shred perceptions and force a reckoning. This is blistering Newfoundland Gothic for the twenty-first century, a wholly original, bracing, and timely portrait of a place in the throes of enormous change, where two women confront the traumas of their past in an attempt to overcome the present and to pick up a future.
By Ian Williams. 2019
LONGLISTED FOR THE 2019 SCOTIABANK GILLER PRIZESHORTLISTED FOR THE 2019 AMAZON CANADA FIRST NOVEL AWARDSHORTLISTED FOR THE 2019 TORONTO BOOK… AWARDS“Poet Ian Williams experiments with structure to tell a classic love story. . . . Reproduction is reminiscent of Miriam Toews’s novel All My Puny Sorrows in its balance between grief and humour. It’s an intergenerational story told in an unexpected way.” —Quill & Quire“Ian Williams delivers a promising first novel. Reproduction manages to be witty, playful, and disarmingly offbeat—even as it hums with serious themes. . . . Reproduction serves as a literary representation of the various intersections of culture, race, and gender in contemporary Canada, it is a mirror with graffiti/social commentary both humourous and powerful scrawled all over it.” —Rayyan Al-Shawaf, Toronto Star “[D]riven as much by its relationships as its characters, and is intensified and enriched by an inventive style that borrows from Williams’s giant poet’s brain.” —The Globe and Mail“[A]n intergenerational novel . . . that examines how love can supersede blood ties. [Reproduction’s] complicated path mirrors how many families are built on experiences that don’t make the photo albums, and illuminates how dark and painful moments can share equal space with joy and laughter. . . .With Reproduction, Williams joins authors like David Chariandy and Catherine Hernandez—whose recent novels are set in Scarborough—showcasing the bounty of stories of those who live beyond the CN Tower’s shadow.” —Sue Carter, Toronto Star“The startling brilliance of Ian Williams stems from his restlessness with form. His ceaseless creativity susses out the right patterning of story, the right vernacular nuance, the right diagram and deftly dropped reference—all in service of vividly illuminating the intermingled comedy and trauma of family.” —David Chariandy, author of Brother and I’ve Been Meaning to Tell You“Reproduction’s genius is its weaponized empathy, the precision-etched intensity of Williams’s gritty, witty, wholly unsentimental exploration of the collision of human hearts and the messy aftermath. Love and its lack form a spectrum that the characters bounce between, searching for connections, redemption and meaning.” —Eden Robinson, author of Trickster Drift and Son of a Trickster
By André Alexis. 2019
Botanist Alfred Homer, ever hopeful and constantly surprised, is invited on a road trip through Southwestern Ontario by his parents'… friend, Professor Morgan Bruno, who wants company as he tries to unearth the story of the mysterious poet John Skennen. But this is no ordinary road trip. As Alfred and the Professor encounter towns with familiar names but where Black residents speak only in sign language or where there are Indigenous Parades, house burnings, werewolves, and witches. Bestseller.
By Téa Mutonji. 2019
In this story collection, a woman contemplates her Congolese traditions during a family wedding, a teenage girl looks for happiness… inside a pack of cigarettes, a mother reconnects with her daughter through their shared interest in fish, and a young woman decides to shave her head in the waiting room of an abortion clinic. These punchy, sharply observed stories blur the lines between longing and choosing, exploring the narrator's experience as an involuntary one. Tinged with pathos and humour, they interrogate the moments in which femininity, womanness, and identity are not only questioned but also imposed. 2019.
By Jūkhah Ḥārithī. 2018
In the village of al-Awafi in Oman live three sisters. Mayya Marries after a heartbreak. Asma marries from a sense… of duty. Khawla rejects all offers while waiting for her beloved, who has emigrated to Canada. Celestial Bodies is the story of the history and people of modern Oman told through one family's losses and loves. 2019.
By Alicia Elliott. 2019
In an urgent and visceral work that asks essential questions about Native people in North America while drawing on intimate… details of her own life and experience with intergenerational trauma, Alicia Elliott offers indispensable insight and understanding to the ongoing legacy of colonialism. What are the links between depression, colonialism and loss of language--both figurative and literal? How does white privilege operate in different contexts? How do we navigate the painful contours of mental illness in loved ones without turning them into their sickness? How does colonialism operate on the level of literary criticism? A Mind Spread Out on the Ground is Alicia Elliott's attempt to answer these questions and more. In the process, she engages with such wide-ranging topics as race, parenthood, sexuality, love, mental illness, poverty, sexual assault, gentrification, writing and representation. Elliott makes connections both large and small between the past and present, the personal and political--from overcoming a years-long history with head lice to the way Native writers are treated within the Canadian literary industry; her unplanned teenage pregnancy to the history of dark matter and how it relates to racism in the court system; her childhood diet of Kraft dinner to how systematic oppression is linked to depression in Native communities. With deep consideration and searing prose, Elliott extends far beyond her own experiences to provide a candid look at our past, an illuminating portrait of our present and a powerful tool for a better future. Bestseller. 2019.
By Alan Walker. 2018
A comprehensive look at the life and work of Fryderyk Chopin. Based on ten years of research and a vast… cache of primary sources located in archives in Warsaw, Paris, London, New York, and Washington, D.C., this is a corrective work intended to dispel the many myths and legends that continue to surround Chopin, and an intimate look into a dramatic life. Of particular focus are Chopin's childhood and youth in Poland, which are brought into line with the latest scholarly findings; his oftentimes troubled romantic life with George Sand, with whom he lived for nine years; and his untimely death at age thirty-nine, which inspired three thousand people to flock to the Madeleine Church in Paris for his funeral. 2018.
By K. D. Miller. 2018
A collection of linked short stories inspired by the paintings of Alex Colville. Each character appears in at least two… of the stories, in a greater or lesser role. The most common link is a ghost who directly or indirectly "haunts" the book throughout. There is more than a hint of the uncanny in some of the stories, and a strong whiff of the gothic. At its lightest, this book is dark, reflecting the edgy, distrubing quality found in much of Alex Colville's work. The common theme is the vulnerability of the elder heart. Many of the characters are aged sixty and up. Inwardly, however, they are ageless--yearning for each other sexually and emotionally, falling in and out of love, forming new ties or rediscovering old ones. Not all characters are human - a dog, a horse, and an octopus play small but pivotal roles. Death is a constant, taking both peaceful and violent forms. Its presence renders the characters' lives and relationships all the more poignant for being ephemeral. 2018.
By Ian Hampton. 2018
By Cary Fagan. 2019
Set in Toronto, this short novel is a portrait of two pivotal times in the life of Miriam Moscowitz. The… first section describes her experiences as a bright young university student in the 1950s and recounts the discrimination she faced as a woman; the second section revisits Miriam's life half a century later, exploring the changes in her community and within herself. 2019.
By Badeeah Hassan Ahmed. 2019
Captured by ISIS, known locally as Daesh, Badeeah was among hundreds forced into a brutal human trafficking network made up… of women and girls of Ezidi ethnicity, a much-persecuted minority culture of Iraq. Badeeah's story takes her to Syria where she is sold to a high-ranking ISIS commander known as Al Amriki, the American, kept as a house slave, raped, and routinely assaulted. Only the presence of her young nephew Eivan and her friend Navine, also prisoners, keeps her from harming herself. In captivity, she draws on memories and stories from her childhood to maintain a small bit of control in an otherwise volatile situation. Ultimately, it is her profound sense of faith and brave resistance that lead her to escape with Eivan and reunite with family. Since her escape, Badeeah has brought her harrowing story of war and survival to the world's stage, raising awareness about the little-known acts of genocide against her culture and the strength of a people unknown to many around the world. 2019.
By Rinaldo Walcott, Idil Abdillahi. 2019
What does it mean in the era of Black Lives Matter to continue to ignore and deny the violence that… is the foundation of the Canadian nation state? BlackLife discloses the ongoing destruction of Black people as enacted not simply by state structures, but beneath them in the foundational modernist ideology that underlies thinking around migration and movement, as Black erasure and death are unveiled as horrifically acceptable throughout western culture. With exactitude and celerity, Idil Abdillahi and Rinaldo Walcott pull from local history, literature, theory, music, and public policy around everything from arts funding, to crime and mental health--presenting a convincing call to challenge pervasive thought on dominant culture's conception of Black personhood. They argue that artists, theorists, activists, and scholars offer us the opportunity to rethink and expose flawed thought, providing us new avenues into potential new lives and a more livable reality of BlackLife.
By Marilyn Elliott, Janet Kitz. 2018
Eric Davidson was a beautiful, fair-haired toddler when the Halifax Explosion struck, killing almost 2,000 people and seriously injuring thousands… of others. Eric lost both eyes-a tragedy that his mother never fully recovered from. Eric, however, was positive and energetic. He also developed a fascination with cars and how they worked, and he later decided, against all likelihood, to become a mechanic. Assisted by his brothers who read to him from manuals, he worked hard, passed examinations, and carved out a decades-long career. Once the subject of a National Film Board documentary, Eric Davidson was, until his death, a much-admired figure in Halifax. Written by his daughter Marilyn, this book gives new insights into the story of the 1917 Halifax Explosion and contains never-before-seen documents and photographs. Winner of the 2019 The Robbie Robertson Dartmouth Book Award (Non-Fiction). 2018.
By Eden Robinson. 2017
Everyone knows a guy like Jared: the burnout kid in high school who sells weed cookies and has a scary… mom who's often wasted and wielding some kind of weapon. Jared does smoke and drink too much, and he does make the best cookies in town, and his mom is a mess, but he's also a kid who has an immense capacity for compassion and an impulse to watch over people more than twice his age, and he can't rely on anyone for consistent love and support, except for his flatulent pit bull, Baby Killer, and now she's dead. Bestseller. 2017.
By Maureen Jennings. 2017
November 1917. The Great War is grinding on. Initially, Canadians are mostly eager to fight for the Empire, but the… carnage is horrendous and with enforced conscription, the enthusiasm for war is dimming. William Murdoch is a widower, a senior detective who, thanks to the new temperance laws, spends his time tracking down bootleggers and tipplers. His wife, Amy, died giving birth to their second child, a girl who lived only a few hours more. Murdoch, racked by grief, withdrew from his four-year-old son Jack, which he deeply regrets. Now, Jack is twenty-one and has returned from France after being wounded. It is soon apparent that he is deeply troubled and bound by shared secrets to another soldier, Percy McKinnon. The night after Jack and McKinnon arrive home, a young man is found beaten to death in the impoverished area of Toronto known as the Ward. Soon after, Murdoch has to deal with a tragic suicide, also a young man. Two more attacks follow in quick succession. The only common denominator is that all of the men were exempted from conscription. Increasingly worried that Jack knows more than he is letting on, Murdoch must solve these crimes before more innocents lose their lives. Sequel to "A journeyman to grief". 2017.
By Helaine Becker. 2018
You've likely heard of the historic Apollo 13 [mission]. But do you know about the mathematical genius who made sure… that Apollo 13 returned safely home? As a child, Katherine Johnson loved to count. She counted the steps on the road, the number of dishes and spoons she washed in the kitchen sink, everything! Boundless, curious, and excited by calculations, young Katherine longed to know as much as she could about math, about the universe. From Katherine's early beginnings as a gifted student to her heroic accomplishments as a prominent mathematician at NASA, this is the story of a groundbreaking American woman who not only calculated the course of moon landings but, in turn, saved lives and made enormous contributions to history. Grades K-3. 2018.
By Jonathan Auxier. 2018
Nineteenth-century England. After her father's disappearance Nan Sparrow, ten, works as a "climbing boy," aiding chimney sweeps, but when her… most treasured possessions end up in a fireplace, she unwittingly creates a golem. Winner of the 2018 Governor General’s Award for Young People's Literature. Grades 4-7. 2018.
By Kit Pearson. 2019
For as long as she can remember, Maisie has spent her summers on Kingfisher Island. She and her beloved cousin… Una run wild, and Maisie feels the warm embrace of her big, extended family. This summer Maisie needs that escape more than ever. But now everything on Kingfisher has changed: Una has returned from her mainland school a sophisticated young woman too mature for childish games, and even worse, she has an all-consuming infatuation with David Meyer, both an old friend and an older man. Soon Maisie finds herself playing second fiddle-jealous of Una and David's closeness, and unsure of what those feelings mean. When Maisie's greatest attempt to maintain the special magic of her friendship with Una goes up in smoke, it seems as though all is lost. But with an enormous revelation, and a heartrending intervention, Maisie may finally discover the strength she needs to find the same peace that the island has brought her within herself. Grades 5-8. 2019.
By Wab Kinew. 2018