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July-August 2018

REVIEW: New plays explore female empowerment, growth, and sexuality

Inside Catherine Hernandez's The Femme Playlist & I Cannot Lie to the Stars That Made Me

Kashi Syal

The Femme Playlist & I Cannot Lie to the Stars That Made Me Catherine Hernandez Playwrights Canada Press, $18.95 Catherine Hernandez is an award-winning author and activist who has dedicated her career to promoting, capturing, and performing the stories of women of colour. The Femme Playlist & I Cannot Lie to The Stars That Made […] More »
July-August 2018

REVIEW: New novel explores time travel and the vitality of love

Inside Thea Lim's timely debut novel, An Ocean of Minutes

Chimedum Ohaegbu

An Ocean of Minutes By Thea Lim Viking, $24.95 In Thea Lim’s An Ocean of Minutes, Polly Nader time-travels to the future to work off medical debts for her boyfriend, Frank, who needs a life-saving treatment. She plans to reunite with him after her work as a bonded labourer is done. However, Polly is rerouted […] More »
July-August 2018

REVIEW: New novel takes an auto-fictional dive into the life of a Toronto millennial

Inside Sludge Utopia by Catherine Fatima

Maria Siassina

Sludge Utopia By Catherine Fatima Book*hug, $20.00 In Sludge Utopia, Catherine Fatima captivates readers with an auto-fictional take of a woman’s journey discovering her place within the world’s definition of love and desire. Protagonist Catherine’s life seems typical of millennial Torontonians—studying, pursuing romances, and trying to keep grounded while maintaining friendships and social networks. However, […] More »
July-August 2018

REVIEW: Novel poses challenging questions about the soul and human mind

Inside Rabindranath Maharaj's Adjacentland

Ophelie Zalcmanis-Lai

Adjacentland By Rabindranath Maharaj Buckrider Books, $22.00 “Today is a new day but yesterday was the same day.” Adjacentland is a twisted story of a man’s journey to discover who he is after waking up in an institution with no memory and only odd clues within letters and drawings to guide his way. As each […] More »
March-April 2018

REVIEW: New ‘lesbian supernatural thriller’ explores the realities of trauma and healing

Inside Amber Dawn's Sodom Road Exit

Allyson Aritcheta

Sodom Road Exit By Amber Dawn Arsenal Pulp Press, $21.95 Returning to Ontario’s Crystal Beach after dropping out of university and accumulating a fair amount of debt in Toronto, Starla Mia Martin doesn’t plan on sticking around her birthplace forever. Her viewpoint quickly changes when she encounters Etta, the paranormal product of a tragic death […] More »
January-February 2018

REVIEW: New collection explores Vancouver weekly’s bicentennial

Inside Georgia Straight: A 50th Anniversary Celebration

Lisa Whittington-Hill

Georgia Straight: A 50th Anniversary Celebration By Doug Sarti and Dan McLeod Rocky Mountain Books, $40.00 Vancouver alternative weekly the Georgia Straight is 50. To celebrate, long-time staff members Sarti and McLeod have put together a beautiful history of the newspaper’s covers. Charting the Straight’s evolution from an underground newspaper to an entertainment weekly, this […] More »
November-December 2017

REVIEW: New book explores Canada’s oil industry

Inside Kevin Taft's Oil's Deep State

Andrew Reeves

Oil’s Deep State: How the Petroleum Industry Undermines Democracy and Stops Action on Global Warming – In Alberta, and in Ottawa By Kevin Taft Lorimer, $29.95 The disturbingly incestuous movement of fossil fuel executives between government, academia, and industry is a rotted and oil-slicked family tree. In Oil’s Deep State, former Alberta Liberal leader Kevin […] More »
November-December 2017

REVIEW: Author’s debut English novel explores love and consequence during the Somali Civil War

Inside Fartumo Kusow's Tale of a Boon's Wife

Allyson Aritcheta

Tale of a Boon’s Wife By Fartumo Kusow Second Story Press, $19.95 Facing tribalism, sexism, and love in the years prior to and during the 1991 civil war in Somalia, a member of the Bliss tribe, Idil, elopes with Sidow of the Boon tribe. Knowingly marrying beneath her, Idil is adamant that her love for […] More »
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 »
July-August 2017

REVIEW: Gwen Benaway’s new poetry collection explores trauma, gender identity, and ancestry

A look inside Passage

Tara-Michelle Ziniuk

Passage By Gwen Benaway Kegedonce Press, $16.00 In her second collection of poetry, award-winning poet Gwen Benaway journeys through ancestral and geographic origins, trauma history, and gender identity. Broken into five sections named after the Great Lakes, the poems within Passage are a testament to Benaway’s survival: of violence, of rejection, of being treated recklessly. […] More »
July-August 2017

REVIEW: Inside the brave and thoughtful analysis of sexual assault evidence systems in Canada

The Technoscientific Witness of Rape by Andrea Quinlan delves into the Sexual Assault Evidence Kit's long and complex history

Maria Siassina

The Technoscientific Witness of Rape: Contentious Histories of Law, Feminism, and Forensic Science By Andrea Quinlan University of Toronto Press, $24.95 The Technoscientific Witness of Rape by Andrea Quinlan is a thoughtful and brave analysis of the long and complex history of the Sexual Assault Evidence Kit (SAEK). Quinlan, an assistant professor in the Department […] More »