Wednesday, November 23, 2011

2012 Canada Reads Titles

The 2012 Canada Reads books were announced Wednesday November 23 on CBC Radio One’s program Q by host and Canada Reads moderator Jian Ghomeshi, along with the celebrity panellists who have chosen titles to defend in a series of four hour-long debates to be staged live in Toronto and airing on CBC Feb. 6-9.

The books and defending panellists are:

• Prisoner of Tehran by Marina Nemat, to be defended Arlene Dickinson, from CBC-TV’s Dragons’ Den.

• Something Fierce by Carmen Aguirre, to be defended by Anne-France Goldwater, star of Quebec’s reality-TV courtroom show l’Arbitre.

• On a Cold Road by Dave Bidini, to be defended by supermodel Stacey McKenzie.

• The Tiger by John Vaillant, to be defended by award-winning rapper Shad.

• The Game by Ken Dryden, to be defended by actor and TV star Alan Thicke.

Now in its 11th year, Canada Reads is highlighting non-fiction for the first time.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Governor General Literary Award Winners 2011


Patrick deWitt, Portland (Oregon) [originally from Vancouver Island], The Sisters Brothers
(House of Anansi Press; distributed by HarperCollins Canada)
Brothers Eli and Charlie Sisters are at the centre of this “great greedy heart” of a book. A rollicking tale of hired guns, faithful horses and alchemy. The ingenious prose of Patrick DeWitt conveys a dark and gentle touch.


Phil Hall, Perth (Ontario), Killdeer
(BookThug; distributed by Literary Press Group)
Killdeer by Phil Hall realizes a masterly modulation of the elegiac through poetic time. It releases the personal from the often binding axis of the egoistic into that kind of humility that only a profound love of language – and of living – can achieve.


Erin Shields, Toronto, If We Were Birds
(Playwrights Canada Press; distributed by University of Toronto Press)
If We Were Birds is a bold and brilliant retelling of a classical myth. The language is poetic and contemporary. Erin Shields creates a haunting and viscerally impactful play about the sexual politics of war. She invites us into a world of complicated family relationships, dangerous sexuality, revenge and fierce loyalty.


Charles Foran, Peterborough (Ontario), Mordecai: The Life & Times
(Alfred A. Knopf Canada; distributed by Random House of Canada)
Mordecai: The Life & Times by Charles Foran is biography as high art, illuminating not only the character of Canada’s most provocative writer, but also, in the most vivid and compelling fashion, the times and places in which he lived. This is a grand, sweeping work that sets the standard for future literary biography.

Children’s Literature — Text

Christopher Moore, Toronto, From Then to Now: A Short History of the World
(Tundra Books; distributed by Random House of Canada)
From Then to Now: A Short History of the World, by Christopher Moore, is a fascinating examination of the evolution of human civilization that is global in its span and inclusive in its outlook. The energetic narrative tells a story that rivals the very best fiction.

Children’s Literature — Illustration

Cybèle Young, Toronto, Ten Birds, text by Cybèle Young
(Kids Can Press; distributed by University of Toronto Press)
Ten Birds is a whimsical, surreal visual riddle. A disarmingly simple story becomes a complex discussion of the adjectives used to “pigeon-hole” individuals in society. Cybèle Young’s beautifully crafted pen and ink images describe a journey to simply cross a river. Ironically none of the birds can fly, but ultimately the simplest answer may be the best.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

New Fiction Titles for Winter 2012

The library has just ordered the following fiction titles which will arrive after the new year. If they are not listed as on order, please send a message on the suggestion to purchase form. If you would like a response, please include your email address.

Archer, Jeffrey: Sins of the Father
Blackstock, Terri: Downfall
Bowen, Gail: Kaleidoscope
Boyne, John: Absolutist
Brockmann, Suzanne: Born to Darkness
Chiaverini, Jennifer: Sonoma Rose
Clancy, Tom: Locked On
Clark, Carol Higgins: Gypped
Clark, Mary Higgins: Lost Years
Clark, Mary Jane: Look of Love
Coben, Harlan: Stay Close
Cox, Josephine: Three Letters
Crais, Robert: Taken
Crombie, Deborah: No Mark Upon Her
Cussler, Clive: Thief
De Rosnay, Tatiana: House I Loved
Evanovich, Janet: Love in a Nutshell
Evans, Richard Paul: Road to Grace
Ferguson, Will: 419
Gardner, Lisa: Catch Me
George, Elizabeth: Believing the Lie
Grippando, James: Need You Now
Hannah, Kristin: Home Front
Herbert, Brian: Sisterhood of the Dune
Higgins, Jack: Devil is Waiting
James, Peter: Perfect People
Jance, J. A.: Left for Dead
Kellerman, Faye: Gun Games
Kellerman, Jonathan: Victims
King, Stephen: Wind through the Keyhole
Kingsbury, Karen: Loving
Knsella, Sophoe: I've got your number
Koontz, Dean: 77 Shadow Street
Lescroart, John: Hunter
MacIntyre, Linden: Why Men Lie
Margolin, Phillip: Capital Murder
McCall Smith, Alexander: Limpopop Academy of Private Detection
Nattel, Lilian: Web of Angels
Oates, Joyce C.: Mudwoman
Palmer, Michael: Oath of Office
Paretsky, Sarah: Breakdown
Parker, T. Jefferson: Jaguar
Patterson, James: Private Games
Patterson, Richard North: Fall from Grace
Perry, Anne: Dorchester Terrace
Perry, Thomas: Poison Flower
Picoult, Jodi: Lone Wolf
Robb, J. D.: Celebrity in Death
Rotenberg, Robert: Stray Bullets
Sawyer, Robert J.: Triggers
Scottoline, Lisa: Come Home
Sheldon, Sidney: Angel of the Dark
Steel, Danielle: Betrayal
Ward, J. R.: Lover Reborn
Woods, Stuart: D. C. Dead
Woodsmall, Cindy: Scent of Cherry Blossoms

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Author Esi Edugyan takes home the Giller Prize

Put a hold on Half-Blood Blues today!

John Barber
Globe and Mail Update
Published Tuesday, Nov. 08, 2011 10:06PM EST
Last updated Wednesday, Nov. 09, 2011 11:21AM EST

Calgary-born novelist Esi Edugyan has prevailed against almost 150 other Canadian novelists to win the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize, worth $50,000.

Clearly taken aback by her triumph, Ms. Edugyan acknowledged her fellow competitors and Patrick Crean of Thomas Allen Publishers, “who saved this book when it most needed saving” following the bankruptcy of Key Porter Books, her original publisher.

Esi Edugyan on her Giller prize win A new mother resplendent in a black gown and sparkling silver necklace, Ms. Edugyan offered special thanks to her father, Kweku, an immigrant from Ghana who brought his family to Canada in the 1970s.

“It's a great blessing to be nominated for four awards but there's also a lot of stress,” she said, adding that she hoped to relax before attending next week's ceremony to award the Governor-General's Literary Award, for which Half-Blood Blues was also nominated.

It's been just a miraculous year in all spheres of my life – an embarrassment of riches,” she said. “I could die tomorrow and everything is wonderful.”

Ms. Edugyan’s award-winning novel is narrated by a long-retired jazz sideman in 20th-century Baltimore who joins an old friend as they revisit Europe to attend the debut of a documentary film about a legendary German trumpet soloist with whom the pair toured the continent in the 1930s. Sid Griffiths deals with mixed emotions and harsh memories as he recalls the trauma of being a black musician in Hitler’s Germany, struggling to make what will become a legendary recording as war descends and fragile trumpeter Hieronymous Falk, the son of a German mother and French colonial soldier, disappears into the maw of the Nazi death machine.

Described by the Giller Prize jury as “a joyful lament,” Half-Blood Blues celebrates the persistence of genius even as it catalogues the sacrifices demanded by art, which in Sid’s case included a lifetime of guilt and regret.

Born in Calgary to Ghanian immigrants, Ms. Edugyan, 33, has enjoyed an eventful career. Currently teaching creative writing at the University of Victoria, she has also taught at Johns Hopkins University and held fellowships in Scotland, Iceland, Germany, Hungary, Finland, Spain and Belgium.

Ms. Edugyan’s first novel, The Second Life of Samuel Tyne, was published internationally to widespread praise in 2004. Its appearance set in doubt by the bankruptcy of publisher Key Porter Books earlier this year, the Canadian edition of Half-Blood Blues was revived from near-death by Thomas Allen Publishers, one of three independent Canadian publishers represented on the six-book Giller shortlist.

Ms. Edugyan won the Giller against an unusually strong list of finalists that included Patrick deWitt’s much-nominated and award-winning The Sisters Brothers, along with two other novels that have drawn glowing reviews internationally: Michael Ondaatje’s The Cat’s Table and David Bezmozgis’s The Free World. Also nominated for the 2011 Giller were Lynn Coady’s novel The Antagonist and Zsuzsi Gartner’s Better Living Through Plastic Explosives, a short-story collection.

Regarded as Canada’s pre-eminent literary prize, the well-promoted and televised Scotiabank Giller Prize routinely transforms winners into bestsellers. Originally published in an edition of a few hundred copies, last year’s winner – The Sentimentalists by Johanna Skibsrud – went on to become one of the best-selling novels of the year.

This year’s prize was awarded by a three-person jury comprised of Howard Norman of the United States, Britain’s Andrew O’Hagan and Canadian novelist Annabel Lyon.

Named for literary journalist Doris Giller, the prize was founded and endowed in 1994 by her husband, Jack Rabinovitch, with the intention of drawing greater attention to Canadian literature and stimulating sales. Co-sponsored by Scotiabank since 2005, the prize has so far generated more than $60-million in book sales, according to organizers.

Friday, November 4, 2011

November Top Ten

Adult Books

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
The Affair by Lee Child
Kill Me if You can by James Patterson
Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
Lethal by Sandra Brown
Flash and Bones by Kathy Reichs
Shock Wave by John Sandford
Silent Girl by Tess Gerritsen
From This Moment On by Shania Twain (autobiography)
The Cats Table by Michael Ondaatje

Adult DVDs

The Kings Speech
Amish Grace
The Green Hornet
Jane Eyre
The Grace Card
The Tourist