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November-December 2017

REVIEW: New novel brings together crime and sport in moving narrative

Inside In the Cage by Kevin Hardcastle

Aaron Broverman

In the Cage By Kevin Hardcastle Biblioasis, $19.95 In the Cage, the first novel by Kevin Hardcastle, follows his award-winning 2015 short story collection, Debris. Like his previous work, In the Cage concerns petty organized crime, rural poverty, and the hard-knock life of Mixed Martial Arts fighters. This time, it features Daniel, whose career-ending injury […] More »
November-December 2017

REVIEW: New dystopian novel finds influence in today’s biggest conflicts

Inside Tarry This Night by Kristyn Dunnion

Ophelie Zalcmanis-Lai

Tarry This Night By Kristyn Dunnion Arsenal Pulp Press, $16.95 Tarry This Night by Kristyn Dunnion is a dystopian tale that takes readers through the days of a bunkered polygamist cult leader, Father Ernst, and his “family.” Told from the perspectives of various family members, Dunnion’s novel reflects a dark coming-of-age story about protagonist Ruth, who must […] More »
November-December 2017

No, Canada isn’t the beacon of racial tolerance that it’s made out to be

As Robyn Maynard writes in her new book, Policing Black Lives, invisibility has not protected Black communities in Canada

Robyn Maynard

Canada, in the eyes of many of its citizens, as well as those living elsewhere, is imagined as a beacon of tolerance and diversity. Seen as an exemplar of human rights, Canada’s national and international reputation rests, in part, on its historical role as the safe haven for the enslaved Black Americans who had fled […] More »
November-December 2017

REVIEW: Lauren McKeon’s new book sheds light on the world of anti-feminism

Inside F-Bomb: Dispatches from the War on Feminism

Stephanie Milliken

F-Bomb: Dispatches from the War on Feminsim By Lauren McKeon Goose Lane Editions, $22.95 In her first book, F-Bomb: Dispatches from the War on Feminism, Lauren McKeon, an award-winning writer, former This Magazine editor, and contributing editor at Toronto Life, investigates why contemporary feminism is deeply fragmented, and argues that we cannot continue to ignore […] More »
September-October 2017

REVIEW: New poetry collection draws from found documents from the 19th century

Inside Better Nature by Fenn Stewart

Lauren Matera

Better Nature By Fenn Stewart BookThug, $18 Better Nature is the first book of poetry by writer and University of British Columbia lecturer Fenn Stewart. She brings together found documents (mainly drawing from an 1880 diary detailing Walt Whitman’s travels through Canada) in a radical effort to “unsettle” Canadian colonial foundations. Stewart’s poems are rife […] More »
September-October 2017

REVIEW: New novel draws on elements of Chinese mythology and magic

Inside Lydia Kwa's Oracle Bone

Ryan B. Patrick

Oracle Bone By Lydia Kwa Arsenal Pulp Press, $19.95 Oracle Bone is Vancouver-based poet and author Lydia Kwa’s latest foray into magic-realist fiction. Drawing on elements of Chinese mythology, the novel centres on an oracle bone, a mystical artifact used for divination purposes. Kwa’s unadorned prose maintains a rich, cinematic vigor, leaning on historical literary […] More »
September-October 2017

REVIEW: Collection of ghoulish short stories perfect for your Halloween night

Inside Coach House Books' The Doll's Alphabet

Marisa Iacobucci

The Doll’s Alphabet By Camilla Grudova Coach House Books, $19.95 Pick up The Doll’s Alphabet, a spellbinding collection of short stories by Camilla Grudova, and prepare to have your day and night dreams forever and delightfully altered by Grudova’s uncertain universe. In it, meet exceptionally original, gorgeously dark, grotesque, and utterly fantastical characters conjured up […] More »
September-October 2017

REVIEW: New book details the origins of the women’s shelter movement

Inside Margo Goodhand's Runaway Wives and Rogue Feminists

Ophelie Zalcmanis-Lai

Runaway Wives and Rogue Feminists: The Origins of the Women’s Shelter Movement By Margo Goodhand Fernwood Publishing, $20 Runaway Wives and Rogue Feminists by journalist Margo Goodhand is a detailed account of the start of the women’s shelter movement across Canada. Featuring many first-hand accounts, Goodhand’s storytelling quickly enthralls readers in a dark history in […] More »
September-October 2017

REVIEW: New short novel captures loss, dark humour set in small-town Nova Scotia

Inside ECW's Malagash

Jemicah Colleen Marasigan

Malagash  By Joey Comeau ECW Press, $15.95 If you’re in need of a book that puts grief into words, look no further than Malagash by Joey Comeau. This quick read is a witty and poignant look inside the mind of a girl who copes with her father’s death by creating a computer virus that utilizes […] More »
September-October 2017

REVIEW: New anthology inspires young Indigenous women to find their way

Inside #NotYourPrincess

Alicia Elliott@WordsandGuitar

#NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women Edited by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Beth Leatherdale Annick Press, $19.95 “I am escaping into Indigenous freedom. I am escaping into Indigenous land and my Indigenous body.” As soon as I read that quote from Leanne Simpson, which opens this diverse, imaginative collection, I knew there was no way […] More »

Toronto’s Another Story Bookshop celebrates 30 years

How the independent bookstore stayed afloat—thanks to late owner Sheila Koffman

Erica Ngao@ericangao

A chalkboard sits on the sidewalk outside of Another Story, the first sign that this isn’t your typical bookstore. Written on it is a quote from American political activist Angela Davis: You have to act as if it were possible to radically transform the world. And you have to do it all the time. Since […] More »