I Spy with My CanLit Eye: Two Classics


Our young separatist narrator is imagining his own future and the future of Quebec, and both man and nation are struggling with matters of expression and independence, in Hubert Aquin's Next Episode (published in 1965, translated by Sheila Fischman in 2001). “I am the fragmented symbol of Quebec’s revolution, its

I Spy with My CanLit Eye: Two Classics2015-10-28T15:32:01-05:00

Daughters, Mothers: Half-Formed and Otherwise


Eimear McBride's A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing (2014) Reading. Then Not. Simon & Schuster, 2014 Sharp sentences. Jabbing thoughts. Unkindnesses bearing down. Book, set aside. Pause. And here is where the experience of reading A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing may end for many readers. Some, however,

Daughters, Mothers: Half-Formed and Otherwise2014-09-30T18:27:34-05:00

John Steffler’s The Afterlife of George Cartwright (1992)


John Steffler’s The Afterlife of George Cartwright McClelland & Stewart, 1992 When John Steffler’s novel opens, Nottinghamshire is shimmering with the energy of May and George Cartwright describes the familiar route he’s taking on his horse. Doesn't seem that remarkable. Yet. But. It's the “same route he’s taken every day

John Steffler’s The Afterlife of George Cartwright (1992)2014-03-13T20:24:06-05:00

Anticipation and Hesitation


Ethel Wilson's Love and Salt Water (1956) McClelland & Stewart, NCL 1990. The advantages of reading an author's works through are many; I love the sense of truly-getting-acquainted that comes with this reading immersion, the intense satisfaction of recognizing interconnections (and divergences) between stories and longer works, the sense of

Anticipation and Hesitation2014-03-09T13:16:33-05:00

Oprah Bookclub, 1954


If Oprah had had a bookclub in 1954, she would have chosen Ethel Wilson's Swamp Angel. And I say this because, despite the ongoing debate amongst booklovers about the significance of Oprah's Bookclub, she has featured many of my favourite writers (e.g. Jane Hamilton, Ursula Hegi, Rohinton Mistry, Barbara Kingsolver,

Oprah Bookclub, 19542014-02-27T19:17:23-05:00
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