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CASE STUDY, DUCKS NEWBURYPORT, ON WRITING AND FAILURE: Reviews and Awards!

IN THE NEWS

CASE STUDY

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet (November 1, 2022) has been longlisted for The Dublin Literary Award 2023! The longlist was announced online on January 30, 2023. You can check out the full longlist here.

The nominating library, Limerick City and County Libraries, comments:

“Macrae Burnet has created a dynamic work that has excellent characterisation with acute observation. The writing is layered but there is no use of superfluous words. While the themes are profound, the style is both intriguing and playful . He has created a book that is thought provoking and a compulsive read.”

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet has been reviewed in Spectrum Culture. The review was published online on January 27, 2023. You can read the complete review here.

J Simpson writes,

“Darkly funny and, at times, deeply weird, Case Study is a dense, complicated, singular work of meta-fiction. It asks deep and important questions without ever shoving them down your throat. Most importantly, though, it tells an interesting and engaging story—three of them, in fact. It’s a ride well worth taking, even if it is sometimes quiet and subtle. Case Study is well-deserving of its praise.”

Get your copy of Case Study here!

DUCKS, NEWBURYPORT

Ducks, Newburyport by Lucy Ellmann was mentioned in the Ohio Star‘s article “The Importance of Reading Difficult Books.” Read the full article here.

Grab your copy of Ducks, Newburyport here!

Check out Lucy Ellmann’s other books here.

ON WRITING AND FAILURE

On Writing and Failure by Stephen Marche (February 14, 2023) was featured in the Columbia Daily Tribune. The article, “These early 2023 books top reading lists of local literary enthusiasts” was published online on January 30, 2023. You can read the full article here.

The article quotes local bookseller, Carrie Koepke,

“Number 6 in the Biblioasis Field Notes Series. A tiny book that holds enough to be a repeated reference. Any writer will benefit from having this honest exposure to the importance of failing. It is a harsh, and still kind, reminder that the effort is more important than the result—because without the effort there isn’t a chance of anything at all.”

Order your copy of on Writing and Failure here!

Check out the rest of the Field Notes series here!

INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE DROWNING, ON BROWSING, THIS TIE THAT PLACE, ORDINARY WONDER TALES, A GHOST IN THE THROAT, BEST CANADIAN ESSAYS 2023: Media Hits!

IN THE NEWS!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place by Clark Blaise (November 8, 2022 ) has been listed on Kirkus Reviews as part of “Yes, You Can Read Short Stories in Shuffle Mode” by Laurie Muchnick. The article was published online on January 24, 2023. You can read the full review here.

Muchnick writes,

“Blaise is a name I’ve known for years but never read, and this career-spanning retrospective is a great place to start. Born in North Dakota to Canadian parents, he’s lived in both Canada and the U.S. with his late wife, Bharati Mukherjee, and our review says his work ‘can feel old-fashioned, but in a good way. The stories have an autobiographical buzz and intensity.’ We call the stories ‘fiercely and smartly observed’; Blaise is, as Margaret Atwood puts it in her foreword, ‘the eye at the keyhole … the ear at the door.'”

Get your copy of This Time, That Place here!

A GHOST IN THE THROAT

Doireann Ní Ghríofa‘s A Ghost in the Throat was listed in Town and Country Magazine as one of “14 Books to Read After Watching The Banshees of Inisherin.” The list was published online on January 21, 2023.

You can read the whole list here.

Grab your copy of A Ghost in the Throat here!

INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE DROWNING

Instructions for the Drowning by Steven Heighton (April 18, 2023) has received a starred review in Foreword Reviews. The review will be part of their March/April 2023 issue.

In Foreword, Elaine Chiew calls Instructions,

“Masterful … the Joycean stories collected in Instructions for the Drowning are searing reminders: that the other side of rage is a vale of tears”

Instructions for the Drowning by Steven Heighton was also featured as part of the Toronto Star’s Spring 2023 preview. You can check out the full preview here.

Preorder your copy of Instructions for the Drowning here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Ordinary Wonder Tales by Emily Urquhart (November 1, 2022), has been reviewed in Consumed By Ink! The review was published online on January 18, 2023. Read the full review here.

Reviewer Naomi MacKinnon writes,

“I let Emily stoke a sense of wonder and an interest in folklore that I didn’t know I had … Reading her essays feels like someone is reading you a bedtime story while learning new and marvelous things.”

Ordinary Wonder Tales was also reviewed in The Charlatan! The review was published online on January 14, 2023. Read the full review here.

Reviewer Daria Maystruk wrote,

“[A] collection of essays that invigorates the imagination, warms the heart and fills the mind with melancholic wonder.”

Grab your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

ON BROWSING

On Browsing by Jason Guriel (Oct 4, 2022) was reviewed at the substack newsletter Lean Out with Tara Henley, published on January 8, 2023.. You can read the whole piece here.

In a short essay called “Weekend Reads: The Wandering Mind,” Tara Henley writes,

“We were snowed in in Toronto when I began reading. My phone fell silent. The wind howled outside the window. And, suddenly, all that existed was Guriel’s exquisite elegy for all we’ve lost with the rise of digital culture—including the experience of passing hours at your local bricks-and-mortar bookshop, browsing.”

Get your copy of On Browsing here!

BEST CANADIAN ESSAYS 2023

Best Canadian Essays 2023 (Nov 15, 2022) was reviewed at the Winnipeg Free Press. The review was published on January 9, 2023. Read the review here.

Reviewer Gene Walz writes, these

“earnest essays offer some serious insight … some of the essays, as stand-alones, are worth the price of the entire book.”

Grab your copy of Best Canadian Essays 2023 here!

Check out the full Best Canadian 2023 set here!

Media Hits: ORDINARY WONDER TALES, THIS TIME THAT PLACE, TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE, BIG MEN FEAR ME, and more!

IN THE NEWS!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Ordinary Wonder Tales by Emily Urquhart (November 1, 2022), has been reviewed in the Globe and Mail! The article on essay collections was published online on December 29, 2022. Read the full article here.

Emily Donaldson writes,

“In her collection Ordinary Wonder Tales, Canadian Emily Urquhart brings her skills as a journalist, editor and folklorist … fascinatingly to bear on a series of exquisitely written essays about the relationship between living and storytelling; about how these two things rely on each other for their mutual survival.”

Get your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place by Clark Blaise (November 8, 2022 ) has been reviewed in The Bulwark. The review was published on December 29, 2022. You can read the review here.

Randy Boyagoda writes,

“Clark Blaise might be North America’s Great Unclaimed Writer. […] These stories, like their author, embody and enact a continental sense and sensibility.”

Get your copy of This Time, That Place here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try Not to Be Strange by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022) has been reviewed in the Times Literary Supplement. The review was published online and in print on December 23, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Michael Saler writes,

“Michael Hingston’s captivating history underscores the affinity between [Javier] Marias’s preoccupations as an artist and the peculiar interplay of the real and fictional that defines the kingdom.”

Grab your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

BIG MEN FEAR ME

Big Men Fear Me by Mark Bourrie (October 18, 2022) has been excerpted in Ottawa Citizen. The excerpt was published online on December 29, 2022.

Check out the full excerpt here.

Get your copy of Big Men Fear Me here!

GLOBE AND MAIL 2023 PREVIEW!

The Full Moon Whaling Chronicles by Jason Guriel (August 1, 2023), Instructions for the Drowning by Steven Heighton (April 18, 2023), and Breaking and Entering by Don Gillmor (August 15, 2023) have been featured as part of the Globe and Mail’s 2023 preview. You can read the full preview here.

Check out The Full Moon Whaling Chronicles here.

Check out Instructions for the Drowning here.

Check out Breaking and Entering here.

CHRISTMAS GHOST STORIES, TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE, ORDINARY WONDER TALES, JUST A MOTHER, ON BROWSING, HAIL THE INVISIBLE WATCHMAN: Globe and Mail, and other hit reviews!

IN THE NEWS

CHRISTMAS GHOST STORIES

Seth’s 2022 Christmas Ghost Stories (November 1, 2022) have been reviewed in the Globe and Mail! The review, which also includes an interview with series illustrator Seth, was published online on December 20, 2022. Read the full review here.

Reviewer Jessica Duffin Wolfe writes,

“[I]t’s worth asking why Christmas and ghosts go so well together, and what the hearthside season’s haunts are trying to tell us.

They live on in the 2022 edition of Christmas Ghost Stories from Biblioasis, a series of chilling classics illustrated by Seth, the celebrated Canadian cartoonist … perfect for slipping into a stocking, or tucking into a coat pocket to while away a rinkside hour.”

Seth’s Christmas Ghost Stories have been reviewed in Cemetery Dance! The review was published online on December 20, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Reviewer Blu Gilliand writes,

“If you’re looking to lace your Christmas cheer with a little fear, then Seth, Biblioasis, and these three authors have the perfect gift for you.”

The Christmas Ghost Stories were also reviewed by Anne Logan for I’ve Read This! The review was published online on December 20, 2022. Read the full review here.

Anne Logan writes,

“I loved them, and really enjoyed the whole concept of reading ghost stories for the holidays ( I appreciate a good scare any time of year!) … These beautiful books are perfect stocking-stuffers, and even better is that they are beautifully illustrated by Canadian darling Seth.”

Pick up your set of the 2022 Christmas Ghost Stories here!

Check out the full series here!

ON BROWSING

Jason Guriel’s On Browsing (October 4, 2022) was listed in Zoomer‘s holiday gift guide, “Holiday Gift List: Books for the Bookish.” The list was published on December 20, 2022. Read whole list here.

Nathalie Atkinson writes,

“The pages of this paean by the Toronto-based poet and critic cover books, but also praise video stores and the practice of slowing down in general. It’s an ode to the pleasures and contemplative benefits of aimlessly wandering the aisles, open to serendipity and discovery. The fact that losing hours to browsing thwarts the ever-present online algorithms is a bonus.”

A portion of On Browsing, originally published at the Yale Review, was listed as one of their most-read prose pieces of the year. “Against the Stream” by Jason Guriel was originally published in January 2022. This list was also announced on December 20, 2022.

Read the whole list along with Guriel’s essay here.

Pick up your copy of On Browsing here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try Not to Be Strange by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022), was listed in 49th Shelf’s list, “Last Minute Picks for All the Types on Your List”! The list was published online on December 19, 2022. Check out the full list here.

Try Not to Be Strange was also reviewed in the BC Review! The review was posted on December 20, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Reviewer Michael Hayward calls it,

“The authoritative history of the Kingdom of Redonda.”

Get your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Ordinary Wonder Tales by Emily Urquhart (November 1, 2022) was listed in 49th Shelf’s list, “Last Minute Picks for All the Types on Your List”! The list was published online on December 19, 2022.

Check out the full list here.

Grab your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

HAIL, THE INVISIBLE WATCHMAN

Hail, the Invisible Watchman by Alexandra Oliver (April 4, 2022) has been selected as one of the ten “Best Books of 2022” in The Walrus. The article was published online on December 16, 2022. Read the full review here.

Carmine Starnino writes:

“Packed with cinematic and tactile writing, Hail, the Invisible Watchman shows us why Oliver is one of the best English-language poets in Canada.”

Get your copy of Hail, the Invisible Watchman here!

JUST A MOTHER

Just a Mother by Roy Jacobsen (March 7, 2023) has been reviewed in The Times Literary Supplement. The article was published online on December 16, 2022.

Adam Sutcliffe writes:

Just a Mother, first published in Norwegian in 2020 and now once again co-translated with great skill by Don Bartlett and Don Shaw, is the longest and most engrossing of the series so far.”

You can read the full review here.

Preorder Just a Mother from your local bookshop here:

Media Hits: ON BROWSING, CASE STUDY, THIS TIME THAT PLACE, CHRISTMAS GHOST STORIES, and more!

IN THE NEWS!

ON BROWSING

Jason Guriel’s On Browsing (Oct 4, 2022) was featured on TVO’s The Agenda. Steve Paikin interviewed Guriel about browsing, physical media, and mall nostalgia. The episode aired on Dec 6, 2022. You can watch the whole interview here.

Jason Guriel published an original piece about holiday shopping as a companion to On Browsing at The Atlantic. In “The Tactile Joy of IRL Gift Buying,” Guriel writes, “Browsing isn’t just better for carbon levels; it’s better for the soul.” Find the whole essay here.

Jason Guriel’s On Browsing has been featured in an article at the Toronto Star. The article was posted online on Dec 3, 2022. You can find the whole piece here.

In a piece titled “Tinder fatigue, the endless Netflix scroll, and the real reason online life is exhausting,” Andy Lamey writes,

“The trend in dating apps illustrates a central insight of poet and critic Jason Guriel in his book On Browsing: constraint can be generative. On Browsing recounts Guriel’s experiences shopping for physical copies of books or movies or albums, and asks, much as the developers of Soon do in the case of dating, why such experiences often compare favourably to seeking out a similar item online.”

Order your copy of On Browsing here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place by Clark Blaise (Oct 18, 2022) has been reviewed in the McGill Tribune! The review was published online on December 7, 2022. Read the full review here.

Adrienne Roy writes,

“[Blaise’s] readers don’t feel as though they’re merely a fly on the wall: They’re sitting in the back of a stolen car in the middle of the night, inheriting a new identity as they watch a past life fade in the rearview.”

This Time, That Place was featured at CBC Books’ ‘The Best Canadian Fiction of 2022,’ published on December 6, 2022. You can find the whole list here.

They write,

This Time, That Place demonstrates why Blaise is one of Canada’s greatest short story writers.”

Grab your copy of This Time, That Place here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Ordinary Wonder Tales by Emily Urquhart (Nov 1, 2022) was reviewed in the McGill Tribune! The review was published online on December 7, 2022. Read the review here.

Ella Buckingham writes,

“In Urquhart’s collection, she dispels the notion that fairy tales are irrelevant in this fast-paced, modern environment, and recreates the magic of childhood in day-to-day life.”

Ordinary Wonder Tales has been reviewed in the Winnipeg Free Press! The review was published online on December 3, 2022. Read the full review here.

Reviewer Ariel Gordon writes,

“This book brings to mind Robin Wall Kimmerer’s work … Ordinary Wonder Tales is a quietly charming book about all the ordinary tragedies in a life. Urquhart’s essays help us understand the stories we tell ourselves, while also being satisfying as stories themselves.

Ordinary Wonder Tales was also reviewed by Andrew Hood for Bookshelf! The review was published online on December 4, 2022. Read the full review here.

Hood writes,

“Through both personal experience, the experiences of others, and scholarship, Urquhart reveals the wondrous to be ordinary and the ordinary to be wondrous … you won’t be able to put the book down. Unless, of course, you have to.”

Emily Urquhart, author of Ordinary Wonder Tales, was interviewed in Kitchener CityNews! The interview was published online on December 2, 2022. Read the full article here.

In the interview, Urquhart states,

“I like to say that I’m a journalist on the folklore beat. We often see journalism as fact and folklore as fiction but I think if you look at fairy tales … what gets passed on within these stories, there’s truth within them.”

Get your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

SETH’S CHRISTMAS GHOST STORIES

Seth’s Christmas Ghost Stories (November 1, 2022) were reviewed on the Total Christmas Podcast! The episode was published online on December 3, 2022. Listen to the review, beginning at 1:24:15 here.

Host Jack Ford says about the Christmas Ghost Stories,

“What I love about these books is that they’re really a proper blast from the past … If you know someone who likes their spooky stories, then they’d make a perfect Christmas gift. They look lovely, the artwork is fantastic, and they’re just a great read … I highly recommend them.”

Seth’s Christmas Ghost Stories were also reviewed in Modern Daily Knitting! The review was posted on December 3, 2022. Check it out here.

Reviewer DG Strong writes,

“There’s a wide range [of stories]—some are genuinely spooky, some (when held to today’s horror movie standards) are borderline campy, but I’ve yet to read one that wasn’t genuinely entertaining.”

Seth’s Christmas Ghost Stories were reviewed in The Charlatan! The review was published online on December 1, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Reviewer Justin Ball writes,

“[Seth’s] illustrations are bold yet simple, and the use of shadows brings a lifelike quality to the playful cartoon style. Seth visually guides readers through each scene and adds thrill to every tale … Those looking to introduce a weird yet interesting tradition with spooky historical ties should consider reading Christmas ghost stories to haunt the holiday season.”

Pick up all three 2022 Christmas Ghost Stories here!

Check out the rest of the series here!

CASE STUDY

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet (November 1, 2022) has been featured in the New York Times as part of “11 New Books We Recommend This Week.” The list was published online on December 1, 2022. You can read the full article here.

Case Study has been featured by Lit Hub as one of “November’s Best Reviewed Books.” The article was published online on November 30, 2022. You can read the full list here.

Pick up your copy of Case Study here!

THE POWER OF STORY

The Power of Story: On Truth, the Trickster, and New Fictions for a New Era by Harold R. Johnson (October 11, 2022) has been reviewed in Quill & Quire by Robert J. Wiersema. The article was published online on December 1, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Wiersema writes,

The Power of Story is a profoundly hopeful book, rooted in the malleability of stories we have taken for granted (the justice system and the government, to name but two), and the power of humans building out from their lifestories to effect those changes.”

Grab your copy of The Power of Story here!

BEST CANADIAN POETRY 2023

The Miramichi Reader, All Lit Up Blog, and the National Observer have reviewed Best Canadian Poetry 2023!

In the Miramichi Reader, Michael Greenstein writes,

“Hats off to Barton for editing this collection that has so much variety and serves as a forum and format for reconciliation; hats off to Biblioasis for publishing Best Canadian Poetry 2023.”

The review was published on Nov 26, 2022. Read the whole review here.

At All Lit Up, bookseller Matthew Stepanic writes,

“With heavy hitters such as Billy-Ray Belcourt, Bertrand Bickersteth, Jake Byrne, Penn Kemp, and Jan Zwicky, this collection will surprise and delight readers with a diverse range of what’s possible in the form, and will help guide them to discover books and poets they’ll want to read more from.”

The recommendation was published Nov 29, 2022. You can read Stepanic’s whole list here.

And at the National Observer, Matteo Cimellaro writes of the collection’s launch,

“As attendees sat cramped between oak bookshelves, […] readers were challenged with distinct poems of varying language, scenes, stories and identities. The reading—and the anthology—appreciates the overlaps and differences of each poet’s specificity.”

The article was published Nov 25, 2022. You can read the whole article here.

Grab your copy of Best Canadian Poetry 2023 here!

Check out the full Best Canadian 2023 set here!

THE AFFIRMATIONS

The Affirmations by Luke Hathaway (April 5, 2022) has been featured as part of The Coast’s “12 local books that topped our reading lists in 2022.” The article was published online on December 6, 2022. You can read the complete list here.

Morgan Mullin writes:

The Affirmations by Luke Hathaway Halifax-based poet Luke Hathaway had a lot to live up to with his newest release, since his last one—was on The New York Times’ radar as one of 2018’s best books. This time around, Hathaway delivers the story of ‘the love that rewired his being’ through lyrical poems that lean into the possibilities presented by small-f faith and transformation.”

Grab your copy of The Affirmations here!

Reviews, Awards, and Interviews: CASE STUDY, ORDINARY WONDER TALES, CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH, and more!

IN THE NEWS!

CASE STUDY

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet (November 1, 2022) has been reviewed by Christian Lorentzen in the New York Times! The review was published online on November 1, 2022. Read the full NYT review here.

Lorentzen writes,

Case Study has a lot in common with the novels of Vladimir Nabokov and Roberto Bolaño, in which invented characters pass through tumultuous episodes of literary history that never quite happened, though it seems as if they should have. … Case Study is a diverting novel, overflowing with clever plays on and inversions of tropes of English intellectual and social life during the postwar decades.”

Case Study has been featured on Lit Hub as one of “18 new books to kick your November reading into gear.” The list was posted on November 1, 2022 and can be read here.

Case Study was reviewed by Jessica Brockmole for The Historical Novel Society. The review was published online on November 1, 2022. Read the full review here.

Brockmole writes,

Case Study is a dizzying dive into British counterculture of the 1960s and the radical anti-psychiatry movement … wildly inventive and slickly written. The notebooks feel so casually and authentically from the period, with ‘Rebecca’s’ word choices and the details she includes saying as much about 1960s British society as they do about her place in it. ‘Rebecca’ is deliciously unreliable as a narrator.”

Graeme Macrae Burnet has been interviewed by Lily Meyer for Crime Reads. The interview was posted online on November 3, 2022 an can be read here.

Meyer writes,

“Burnet propels readers through the novel with his fierce, hilarious intelligence.”

Case Study has also been excerpted in Lit Hub and featured by Vol 1. Brooklyn as part of their “November 2022 Book Preview.” The excerpt, and preview were published online on November 3, 2022. Read the Lit Hub here, and Vol 1. Brooklyn here.

Grab your copy of Case Study here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Emily Urquhart, author of Ordinary Wonder Tales (November 1, 2022), was interviewed by Lisa Godfrey on CBC Ideas! The episode on hauntings aired on October 25, 2022. Emily’s segment begins at 25:00 mins. Listen to the full episode here.

Ordinary Wonder Tales has been reviewed by Kathleen Rooney in LIBER: A Feminist Review. The review will be published in print in their Winter 2022 issue. Read the full review here.

Kathleen writes,

“In Ordinary Wonder Tales, Urquhart stylishly combines her personal experiences with her academic expertise, leading to a reading experience that feels entertaining and casual yet also edifying … It’s a testament to Urquhart’s own formidable storytelling skill that each of her essays inspires a quiet awe.”

Ordinary Wonder Tales was been listed in CBC Books and Toronto Life!

The CBC Books list, “20 Canadian books we can’t wait to read in November” was published on November 2, 2022. You can check it out here.

The Toronto Life list, “Sixteen things to see, do, read and hear in Toronto this November” was published on October 28, 2022. You can read the full list here.

Order your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

THE AFFIRMATIONS

Luke Hathaway‘s poem “As the part hanteth after the water brooks” from The Affirmations (April 5, 2022), won the Confederation Poets Prize by Arc Poetry. The prize winner was announced on October 27, 2022. You can read the full announcement here.

This year’s judge, Brecken Hancock, had this to say about the winning poem:

“In 12 incredibly short lines, Luke Hathaway has captured how we survive and thrive by chance, by lucky accident. These spare lines take the reader on a profound journey with the speaker who has gone “uphill to the well / where I went, as I thought // for my water” only to find an utterly new form of thirst and its remedy waiting there instead. A previously unrecognized, but life-threatening, form of dehydration is alleviated (in what feels like the nick of time) by the startling discovery of a source to quench it. Rather than dwell on what had previously been missing, a sorrowful lack, the poem ends in affirmation—communicating a resonant relief, and, beyond that, the joy and ecstasy that can finally be embodied and expressed when our deepest needs are recognized and met.”

Get your copy of The Affirmations here!

CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH

Confessions with Keith by Pauline Holdstock (October 25, 2022), has been reviewed at Focus on Victoria on October 31, 2022. Read the whole review here.

Reviewer Amy Reiswig writes,

Confessions with Keith reminds us that life is a raw, radiant, and ridiculous story unfolding moment by moment for everyone in their separate subjectivities. It deserves laughter. It deserves tears. It is made more bearable by books like this, the literary equivalent of uncensored midnight conversation over cups of tea or glasses—plural—of wine. What Vita observes of festival street performers could well be said of reading Holdstock’s newest creation: ‘It was a shared experience of human life, a little bit of eternity together.'”

Confessions With Keith has also been reviewed at the BC Review. Read the whole review here.

Reviewer Candace Fertile writes,

“Things going wrong on many levels is the focus of the novel, but Vita’s ability to plough through the problems and often see the humour even when exhausted is refreshing … Confessions with Keith deals with real life issues in a frenetic and funny manner.”

Get your copy of Confessions with Keith here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place: Selected Stories by Clark Blaise (October 18, 2022) has been excerpted at Open Book. The excerpt is from the story “Translation” and was published Nov 1, 2022. You can read it here.

This Time, That Place also received a starred review at Quill & Quire. The review was published on November 2, 2022. Check out the whole review here.

Reviewer Steven W. Beattie writes,

“Blaise is … almost preternaturally adept at noticing things … sublime technique and linguistic finesse [are] showcased in these inestimable short works.”

Pick up your copy of This Time, That Place here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Michael Hingston, author of Try Not to Be Strange: The Curious History of the Kingdom of Redonda (September 13, 2022), has been reviewed by MA Orthofer in The Complete Review. The article was published on October 30, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Orthofer writes,

Try Not to be Strange is an enjoyable account of a bizarre not-quite-real place, with a rich cast of characters—not least Hingston himself, who amusingly tracks his own obsessiveness.”

Michael Hingston has also been interviewed on Across the Pond podcast and New & Used podcast! Both episodes were published on November 1, 2022. You can listen to Across the Pond here, and New & Used here.

Get your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

THE DAY-BREAKERS, CHRISTMAS GHOST STORIES, TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE, POWER OF STORY, A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE: Media Hits!

IN THE NEWS!

CHRISTMAS GHOST STORIES 2022

Two of this year’s Christmas Ghost Stories from Seth (November 1, 2022), have been featured on the Christmas Past Podcast!

The episode featuring The Dead and the Countess by Gertrude Atherton aired on October 10, 2022, and can be listened to here.

The episode featuring The Corner Shop by Lady Cynthia Asquith aired on October 17, 2022 and can be heard here.

Grab a set of Christmas Ghost Stories 2022 here!

Check out the whole series here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try Not to Be Strange: The Curious History of the Kingdom of Redonda by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022), has been reviewed by Susan Huebert in the Winnipeg Free Press. The article was published online on October 16, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Huebert writes,

“Hingston traces the story of one of the strangest kingdoms in the world … a fascinating account.”

Pick up your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

THE POWER OF STORY

The Power of Story: On Truth, the Trickster, and New Fictions for a New Era by Harold R. Johnson (October 11, 2022) has been excerpted in the Globe and Mail. The excerpt, “What story of colonialism do you want to believe in?” was published on October 15, 2022.

Read the full excerpt here.

Get your copy of The Power of Story here!

A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE

A Factotum in the Book Trade by Marius Kociejowski (April 26, 2022) has been reviewed by Antanas Sileika on CBC’s The Next Chapter. The segment aired on October 15, 2022. Listen to the full segment here.

In the segment, Sileika says,

“I love this book … What he’s after is a kind of authenticity of human experience … He awakens in me that first understanding I had about books and literature when I was young … It was a wonderful read.”

Grab a copy of A Factotum in the Book Trade here!

THE DAY-BREAKERS

The Day-Breakers by Michael Fraser (April 5, 2022) has been featured on CBC Books as part of “22 books by past CBC Literary Prizes winners and finalists that came out in 2022.” The list was published online on October 17, 2022.

You can read the complete list here.

Get your copy of The Day-Breakers here!

Media Hits: QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL, BIG MEN FEAR ME, ON BROWSING, THE POWER OF STORY, and more!

IN THE NEWS!

QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL

Querelle of Roberval (August 2, 2022) by Kevin Lambert translated by Donald Winkler was reviewed at the Globe and Mail. The review was published online on October 4, 2022. Read the whole review here.

Reviewer Ian McGillis writes,

“Lambert fully earns the company of his invoked forebears—Genet the teller of inconvenient truths, and the ancient Greeks, in whose work tragedy unfolds with the inexorability of a change in the seasons … Lambert’s prose, seamlessly rendered in English by Donald Winkler, meets all the demands of an ambitiously structured work. His default mode is a spare voice describing extreme things with a reined-in economy. But there are other feathers in his bow. With equal facility he can go full-on granular … or big-picture poetic, taking off on flights of numinous lyricism.”

Querelle of Roberval was reviewed by The Fiddlehead. The review was published online on October 7, 2022. You can read the whole review here.

Reviewer thom vernon writes,

“unabashedly thrusts and skewers its way to its end … Lambert’s Querelle of Roberval is far more than a titillating romp sniffing around the blades, bar stools, and crotches of beleaguered labour; it is a blistering hunt for a liberation that may never come.”

Querelle of Roberval was also reviewed by the Consumed by Ink blog on October 7, 2022! You can read the review here.

Reviewer Naomi McKinnon, who discusses Querelle alongside Lambert’s first novel, You Will Love What You Have Killed, writes,

“I recommend both of these books to those of you who dare … How to explain that something shocking and horrifying can also be good?”

Querelle of Roberval was featured on the podcast Getting Lit with Linda. The episode aired on October 7, 2022. You can listen to the whole episode here.

Reviewer Linda Morra says that Lambert is

“in possession of a prodigious talent … something of a cross between Stephen King and Alice Munro. If these two had a child-writer, they’d spawn Lambert. The grisly viciousness and the explicit gore of the former, and the psychological savvy, depth of motive, and ironic tone of the latter … I had trouble both putting the book down and continuing to read as only a truly horrifying and well-written book would compel a reader to do … A dextrous hand, laying bare human impulses and tracing the mysteries of persons, institutions, and larger stories of which they’re all a part.”

Pick up your copy of Querelle of Roberval here!

CASE STUDY

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet (November 1, 2022) has been reviewed by Shahina Piyarali in Shelf Awareness. Published online on October 3, 2022. Check out the review here.

Piyarali writes,

“Burnet’s deployment of multiple narrative structures, his finely tuned depiction of Braithwaite, and the fascinating revelations of the diarist result in an unforgettable story, one that will rattle readers long after its startling, disorientating ending.”

Grab your copy of Case Study here!

BIG MEN FEAR ME

Big Men Fear Me by Mark Bourrie (October 18, 2022) has been reviewed by John Ibbitson in the Globe and Mail. The review was published online on October 5, 2022. Read the full review here.

Ibbitson writes,

“Mark Bourrie has written a simply splendid book about George McCullagh, founding owner of The Globe and Mail, who dominated the worlds of politics and journalism in Ontario during the 1930s and 40s, but who has virtually been lost to memory. Bourrie’s book positively sings … [it] is thoroughly researched and the prose is clean and engaging … McCullagh deserves to be known … He made The Globe the dominant voice in English Canadian journalism. Bourrie’s biography does him full justice.”

Pick up your copy of Big Men Fear Me here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Ordinary Wonder Tales by Emily Urquhart (November 1, 2022), has been reviewed by Joan Sullivan in The Telegram (SaltWire)! The review was published on October 7, 2022. Read the full review here.

Sullivan writes,

Ordinary Wonder Tales is so well-written, so full of enriching, unexpected connections, so captivating; a reader will be tempted to consume it in gulps, and then go back for seconds.”

Ordinary Wonder Tales was also reviewed in The Link! The review was published on October 12, 2022. Read the full review here.

Claire Helston-VanDuzer writes,

“Urquhart’s corrobation of legends to day-to-day life offers the same getaway and warmth that indulging in a supernatural world can. So, to all the retired fantasy lovers out there, please do yourself a favor and read this book … Ordinary Wonder Tales has opened my eyes to the ways that the mythical can allow opportunity for women to tell their own story in a forgiving environment. It has encouraged me to seek out other narratives that do the same.”

Order your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

THE POWER OF STORY

The Power of Story: On Truth, the Trickster, and New Fictions for a New Era by Harold R. Johnson (October 11, 2022) has been featured on CBC Books as one of their October reads. The list was published online on October 6, 2022. Check out the full list here.

CBC writes,

“In this posthumous work, Harold R. Johnson makes a case for how stories can shape and change our lives for the better if only we are willing to employ story as the world-building tool that it is.”

The Power of Story was featured in La Ronge Now. The article was published on October 11, 2022. Check out the full article here.

Derek Cornet writes,

“Harold illustrates how people can direct their potential to re-create and reform not only their own lives but the life everyone shares.”

The Power of Story has also been featured in The Saskatoon Star Phoenix. The article, which features an interview with Joan Johnson, was published on October 11, 2022. Check out the full article here.

Joan Johnson says, in the interview:

“Everything in The Power of Story is a culmination of Harold’s life, his experiences and his belief system.”

Pick up a copy of The Power of Story here!

ON BROWSING

On Browsing by Jason Guriel (October 4, 2022) has been reviewed at the Winnipeg Free Press. The review was published Oct 7, 2022. You can read the whole article here.

Reviewer Chris Smith writes,

“Browsing is many things: a lifestyle, a relaxation, a revelation if your search finds a long-sought book or a rare recording, and perhaps more importantly a soul-refreshing excursion in a world of instant online search-and-buy options….Guriel, a lifelong browser, wrote this booklet of essays while detained at home during the COVID pandemic and reduced to scrolling, without access to his beloved physical media and the combined sensations of holding a book in your hand while your brain processes the value of the words within it.”

Jason Guriel, author of On Browsing, was interviewed with City News Toronto at The Big Story podcast. The episode is called “What do we lose when our malls disappear?” Listen to the whole interview here.

“Browsing,” Jason says, “is a kind of aimlessness that widens; it doesn’t narrow.” When asked how a person can experience that lost feeling of browsing, Jason recommends “leaving your phone at home and setting out for a walk. Arrange to be truly by yourself for a while.”

Grab a copy of On Browsing here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try Not to Be Strange: The Curious History of the Kingdom of Redonda by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022) has been reviewed by Michael Dirda in the Washington Post. The article was published on October 6, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Dirda writes,

“It’s a wonderfully entertaining book, an account of how its Canadian author grew fascinated with a literary jape, a kind of role-playing game or shared-world fantasy involving some of the most eccentric and some of the most famous writers of modern times.”

Pick up a copy of Try Not the Be Strange here!

MUSIC, LATE AND SOON

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Robyn Sarah‘s Music, Late and Soon (August 24, 2021) has been reviewed at the Miramichi Reader. The review was published on October 13, 2022. You can read the rest of the review here.

Reviewer Michael Greenstein writes,

“Part sonata, part symphony, far more than a memoir, Music, Late and Soon introduces a number of memorable characters worthy of a novel, and an array of orchestral instruments that modulate the prose, melodies, and personalities surrounding the author’s life”

Grab you copy of Music, Late and Soon here!

CASE STUDY, CONFESSION WITH KEITH, TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE and more: Reviews and Lists!

IN THE NEWS!

CASE STUDY

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet (November 1, 2022) has been reviewed in the Michigan Daily! The review was published online on September 21, 2022. Read the full review here.

Julian Wray writes,

Case Study reflects on relationships of power: the physical power of abusive men over women, the lingering power of memory over oneself. It reflects on the power of one’s wishes over one’s reality, the schism we create in ourselves when we resign to our present state and nothing more. Rebecca is a case study of what happens when desires run away on their own, such that a person is left to watch them go.”

Case Study has also received a starred review in Foreword Reviews! The review will be printed in their November/December issue. Check out the full review here.

An excerpt from the review:

“The fictional author and Burnet share the same initials, which should be a clue as to how close the book will come to breaking the fourth wall … The matryoshka-style layering of narratives, each dependent on the other, is engaging and disorienting. Case Study is an immersive novel that stretches its fiction to fact-like proportions.”

Order your copy of Case Study here!

CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH

Confessions With Keith by Pauline Holdstock (September 20, 2022) was reviewed at the Winnipeg Free Press by Bev Sandell Greenberg! The article, “Domestic story of a dysfunctional delight” was published online on September 26, 2022. You can read the full article here.

Greenberg writes,

“Replete with sensory details, the four-part narrative consists of journals written in Vita’s voice in succinct, cheeky prose … The journals establish a sense of intimacy that endears us to Vita, but they also convey a level of tension palpable on every page … Holdstock’s fast-paced comic novel with its entertaining narrative will captivate readers, especially those who relish domestic tales.”

Confessions With Keith was reviewed in The Vancouver Sun by Brett Josef Grubisic! The article, “Holdstock extracts witty, painful glimpse into one woman’s revolving life” was published online on September 21, 2022. Read the full article here.

Grubisic writes,

“Magnetic … artfully expressed—funny, honest, wry, intimate—private thoughts … On page after assured page, Vita [is] confounded thrilled, irked, hurt, and envious—about minutia as well as the big picture—and all of which are facets of what she calls ‘the senselessness of human existence.'”

Get your copy of Confessions with Keith here!

ON BROWSING

On Browsing by Jason Guriel (October 8, 2022) has been excerpted in The Walrus. They’ve titled it “I Miss Being Bored at the Mall.”

You can read the whole excerpt here.

Grab your copy of On Browsing here!

BIG MEN FEAR ME

Big Men Fear Me by Mark Bourrie (October 18, 2022) has been included in the Quill & Quire Fall Books Preview published online on September 21, 2022. Check out the full list here.

Attila Berki writes,

“Mark Bourrie revives the life of George McCullagh—a charismatic high-school dropout, a self-made millionaire, the creator and owner of the Globe and Mail, and a man with great political potential—whose fall in the mid-20th century would be as steep as his rise to prominence.”

Order your copy of Big Men Fear Me here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try Not to Be Strange: The Curious History of the Kingdom of Redonda by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022) has been featured in the New York Times as part of their Newly Published column. The article was published on September 21, 2022. You can read the full article here.

The New York Times writes,

“This combination literary history, travelogue and cautionary tale tells the history of the formerly uninhabited Caribbean island of Redonda and its development into a ‘micronation’ ruled by writers, beginning with the science fiction author M.P. Shiel in 1880.”

Try Not to Be Strange was also featured in Fine Books & Collections as one of their editor’s picks. The article was published online on September 16, 2022. You can read the full article here.

Fine Books & Collections writes,

“Combining travelogue, memoir, and literary history, Hingston has crafted a fascinating tale full of eccentric characters. Editions of all sizes play a role in the drama, and bibliophiles will also relish the author’s auction experience.”

Grab your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place by Clark Blaise (October 18, 2022) has been reviewed at Kirkus Reviews. The review will go live September 28, 2022.

The reviewer writes,

“These stories cover ground not only geographically. They are also crowded with character and incident, always fiercely and smartly observed … Blaise has gathered here a smart, sprawling collection of stories about family, rootlessness, and identity.”

Grab your copy of This Time, That Place here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE, A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE, QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL, BIG MEN FEAR ME, and more: Latest Reviews and Interviews!

IN THE NEWS!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try No to Be Strange by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022) has been reviewed by Robert J. Wiersema in the Toronto Star. The review was posted online on September 16, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Wiersema writes,

“That spirit, the tongue-in-cheek mock seriousness of the whole endeavour, and the playfulness of its participants, is a keen factor in Try Not to Be Strange. The book is a delightful reading experience, utterly unexpected and unlike anything you are likely to read this year.”

Try Not to Be Strange was also reviewed by Kevin Hardcastle in Quill and Quire on September 16, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Hardcastle writes,

Try Not to Be Strange is a passionate and skillfully written exploration of an extraordinary world and those who search for such places to get to the heart of what stories really mean. Hingston’s thirst for deeper knowledge is palpable, and it illuminates what the kingdom might really stand for.”

Grab your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

 

A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE

A Factotum in the Book Trade by Marius Kociejowski (April 26, 2022) has been reviewed in the Literary Review of Canada by Jessica Dunn Wolfe. The article, “Whims and Longings” was published online on September 12, 2022. Read the full article here.

Wolfe writes,

A Factotum in the Book Trade displays the prose style of someone who takes inordinate delight in the unlikely conjunctions afforded by such places. Kociejowski pinpoints the joys of bookstores for readers and booksellers both, while sketching a miscellany of the personalities he has encountered throughout his career.”

Grab your copy of A Factotum in the Book Trade here!

QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL

Querelle of Roberval (August 2, 2022) by Kevin Lambert, trans. by Donald Winkler, has been shortlisted for the Atwood Gibson Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize! The shortlist was announced at 10 am ET on September 14, 2022. You can read the full shortlist here.

The judges’ citation for the Atwood Gibson Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize:

“Kevin Lambert’s fearless novel is a profane, funny, bleak, touching, playful, and outrageous satire of sexual politics, labour, and capitalism. In ecstatic and cutting prose, it gleefully illuminates both the broad socio-political tensions of life in a Quebec company town and the intimate details of sex, lust, loneliness, and gay relationships in such a place. Like its central character, the book is brash, beautiful, quasi-mythic, and tragic. Most improbably, for all its daring and provocation, Querelle of Roberval is lyrically, even tenderly written.”

Querelle of Roberval has also been reviewed by Aaron Obedkoff in the Literary Review of Canada. The review was published online on September 12, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Obedkoff calls Lambert

“a skilled examiner of depravity … Lambert’s excavation into the depths of desire and provocation is as thrilling as it is disturbing, as beautiful as it is revolting. This is a difficult balance to manage, yet it may well be the key to his success.”

Pick up your copy of Querelle of Roberval here!

BIG MEN FEAR ME

Big Men Fear Me by Mark Bourrie (October 18, 2022) has been reviewed in the October issue of the Literary Review of Canada by Dave Marks Shribman. The review is online as of September 12, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Shribman writes,

“Mark Bourrie’s remarkable—and long overdue—biography of one of the most consequential and least remembered Canadians of the past century. … Bourrie toiled for years to resurrect [George McCullagh], but, I’m glad to say, he did not wipe away the carbuncles, boils, and blisters. His portrait of a man who once was among Canada’s most powerful figures is, to choose two apt terms, both melancholy and masterly.”

Big Men Fear Me was also included by Nathaniel G. Moore in the Miramichi Reader’s ‘Fall Preview Part Two’! The list was published on September 5, 2022. Check out the full preview here.

Moore writes,

“If you love Mad Men and Netflix biopics about ruthless tie-wearing maniacs, if you’re wanting the fourth wall to come crashing down on a discussion about class and poverty … you’ll probably need to pick up [Big Men Fear Me] from Biblioasis.”

Order your copy of Big Men Fear Me here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place: Selected Stories by Clark Blaise (October 18, 2022) has been reviewed in the Literary Review of Canada. The review was published in print on September 12, 2022.

An excerpt from the review,

“The adolescent yo-yo takes many forms in This Time, That Place (Biblioasis), which recalls an old cigar box filled with undated and often cryptic postcards. […] Individually or as a group, these loosely linked stories will reward multiple readings.”

Grab your copy of This Time, That Place here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Emily Urquhart, author of Ordinary Wonder Tales (November 1, 2022), has been interviewed by Joan Sullivan in the The Newfoundland Quarterly! The interview was published on September 16, 2022. Read the full interview here.

Urquhart says in the interview,

“Our most personal fears, the worries that visit us in our waking night hours, are not new. We feel as if they are specific to us and our lives but once you regain some of your logic in the daylight hours, you can turn to the wisdom in the world’s great folklore bank and discover a story that might help you to understand your most confusing and difficult fears, or, if not understand these fears, at least let you know that you aren’t alone.”

Ordinary Wonder Tales was also included by Nathaniel G. Moore in the Miramichi Reader’s ‘Fall Preview Part Two’! The list was published on September 5, 2022. Check out the full preview here.

Moore writes,

Ordinary Wonder Tales will have readers conjuring up memories of their first encounters with fairy tales, fables, and storytelling … if you’re compelled to imagine the mysterious forgotten worlds of imagination, of fables and possibilities … pick up [this book].”

Order your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

SHIMMER

Shimmer by Alex Pugsley (May 17, 2022) was reviewed in the Miramichi Reader. The review was published online on September 11, 2022. Read the full review here.

Heidi Greco writes,

“His greatest gift as a writer is, I believe, his ability to carry dialogue … a brave departure from the highly-praised Aubrey McKee.

Pick up your copy of Shimmer here!

CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH

Pauline Holdstock‘s forthcoming novel, Confessions With Keith (September 20, 2022) was featured as an editor’s fall pick on 49th Shelf! The article was published online on September 14, 2022.

You can read the full article here.

Pick up your copy of Confessions With Keith here!