Open a book this minute and start reading. Don’t move until you’ve reached page fifty. Until you’ve buried your thoughts in print. Cover yourself with words. Wash yourself away. Dissolve. Carol Shields Republic of Love

June 2017, In My Bookbag

In which I discuss the skinny volumes which accompany me on my travels, while the heavier volumes (like Margaret Millar’s omnibus of mysteries, like Elizabeth von Arnim’s Christopher and Columbus) remain at home.

Tiphanie Yanique’s Wife appeared from Peepal Press in 2015, after a collection of stories and a novel: time for poetry. It is […]

Share

Oh, the Saga-ness of it all

Rereading the Saga comics is definitely worthwhile. On first-reading, I was a little off-kilter, so engrossed in some panels that I missed others completely, only occasionally remembering to retrace my steps. Discovering wings or horns on characters who appeared humanoid at first glance was delightfully but consistently distracting.

Readers are aware almost immediately that the story […]

Share

Margaret Millar’s How Like an Angel (1962)

Exploring in the back country of Santa Barbara County California, Margaret Millar discovered a group of abandoned buildings on top of a ridge of the Santa Ynez mountains. The view was incredible: the Pacific Ocean, the Santa Ynez valley, Lake Cachuma, and the San Rafael mountains, along with a main lodge, out-buildings, and a tower.

[…]

Share

Life on Mars, Again and Again

When you’ve looked up a book title, have you ever been tempted by the other books you’ve found with the same title as the book for which you were searching?

In adding Lori McNulty’s debut short story collection to my online TBR list, I discovered several other books with the same title, including Tracy K. Smith’s […]

Share

Louise Erdrich’s Love Medicine (1984)

“Since writing Love Medicine, I have understood that I am writing one long book in which the main chapters are also books titled Tracks, Four Souls, The Bingo Palace, The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse and The Painted Drum. The characters appear and disappear in my consciousness – a lamentable, messy […]

Share

2017 Africa Reading Challenge

Even though Canada only has a land mass of 9.985 million km², reading works by Canadian writers comprises more than half of my reading.

Meanwhile, Africa has a land mass of 30.37 million km² and less than 1% of my reading has come from the pens of African writers this year.

Curious about that less-than-1%? It’s Téju Cole‘s Everyday is […]

Share

Mazo de la Roche’s Morning at Jalna (1960)

Although the last of the Jalna books written, Morning at Jalna is only the second in the sequence.

It is set while the civil war is raging in the southern United States, and readers are immediately informed that the Whiteoaks are sympathetic to the southerners.

In school, during the 1970s and the 1980s, I was […]

Share

Adding to My Indigenous Reading List

When I was musing on the possibilities for a reading list of indigenous authors, almost all of my favourites were fiction (just one memoir and some poetry snuck in). It just happened! But halfway through the reading year, I read the Summary Report of the Truth and Reconcilation Committee with my reading for the Tenth Annual Canadian Challenge, […]

Share