History (B.C.)

Brief encounters

Characters struggle with loneliness and death in a debut story collection buoyed by a hopeful tone. —Bill Paul reviews Blue Runaways, by Jann Everard (Victoria: Stonehewer Books, 2024) $23.95 / 9781738993307

‘Do birds piss big?’ and other questions

By turns funny and incisive, a debut essayist is a connoisseur of everyday absurdities. —Brett Josef Grubisic reviews Laser Quit Smoking Massage: Essays, by Cole Nowicki (Edmonton: Newest Press, 2024) $21.95 / 9781774390917

The missing and the dead

From “the city to rural backroads, Siemens takes readers on an unforgettable journey.” —Valerie Green reviews Call of the Void, by J.T. Siemens (Edmonton: NeWest Press, 2024) $22.95 / 9781774390863

Deaths by injection

Reviewer enthralled by the tenth Émile Cinq-Mars murder mystery. —Ron Verzuh reviews A Patient Death, by John Farrow (Holstein, ON: Exile Editions, 2023) $32.95 / 9781550969856

A deep dive with queer fish

A poet’s debut meditates on family, ancestry, diaspora, and selfhood. —Harold Rhenisch reviews Shima, by Sho Yamagushiku (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2024) $22.50 / 9780771010927

Ghosts of the Korean divide

With mesmeric effects, a debut novel blends the beautiful, surreal, and disturbing. —Daniel Gawthrop reviews The Invisible Hotel, by Yeji Y. Ham (Toronto: Bond Street Books, 2024) $34.00 / 9780385698054

Emerging from vulnerability

“The book forms both a personal case study in the psychology of how vulnerable individuals are susceptible to cults, and how destructive to one’s worldview it can be trying to leave one.” Ryan Mitchell reviews Misguided: My Jesus Freak Life in a Doomsday Cult by Perry Bulwer (Vancouver: New Star Books, 2023) $26 / 9781554202058

Serious entertainment

Debut eco-thriller is “controlled, crafted, deliberate—and, to boot, utterly purposeful.” —Theo Dombrowski reviews Adrift, by Lisa Brideau (Naperville, IL: Sourcebooks Landmark, 2023) $25.99 / 9781728265681

Rot beneath the gloss

Sophomore story collection has “a finger firmly on the pulse of contemporary life and delivers trenchant criticisms of human foibles.”
—Candace Fertile reviews Last Woman, by Carleigh Baker (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2024) $24.95  / 9780771004148

The ‘colour of everyday miracles’

Bowen Island inspires a poet and painter to celebrate how “here, right here, is a blessing.” —Mary Ann Moore reviews Water Forgets Its Own Name, by Jude Neale & Nicholas Jennings (Victoria: Ekstasis Editions, 2023) $27.95 / 9781771715300

When Hollywood calls – an essay

“…plenty of other BC writers are available to adapt novels and short stories, the latter being a great source of filmable material.” Ron Verzuh writes When Hollywood Calls: An Essay on How Books Get Made Into Movies in BC.

Odes to the ordinary

Poems with cool-eyed but compassionate observations convey personal transformations and memorable cityscapes. —Adrienne Fitzpatrick reviews Nevertheless: Walking Poems, by Gillian Jerome (Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2022) $19.95 / 9780889714120

Time paradox terrain

Cerebral and captivating literary debut is speculative fiction with a capital S. —Zoe McKenna reviews The Other Valley, by Scott Alexander Howard (Toronto: Scribner Canada, 2024) $24.99 / 9781668023563

AI and corporate intrigue

Although addictive and inventive, a debut novel’s storyline could use a trim. —Valerie Green reviews The Wickedest of Things, by Russel Barrie (Kamloops: Russel Barrie Books, 2023) $24.00 / 9781738060701

A whimsical respite

A joyous “compendium of delightfully quirky short pieces.” —Heidi Greco reviews Jigsaw: A Puzzle in Ninety-Three Pieces, by M.A.C. Farrant (Vancouver: Talon Books, 2023) $19.95 / 9781772015430

Rage + sin = freedom

Exceptional essays “elicit gasps, induce chills.” —Brett Josef Grubisic reviews Dinner on Monster Island: Essays, by Tania De Rozario (Toronto: HarperCollins Canada, 2024) $17.99 / 9780063299665

Understanding one’s ‘own kind of tragedy’

A wild ride of a debut novel portrays an aggrieved widow and self-described “aimless fool.” —Tricia Bowering reviews Norma, by Sarah Mintz (Toronto: Invisible Publishing, 2024) $22.95 / 9781778430404

A bounty of ‘beautiful borrowed lines’

A “joyous tribute in poetry and prose” to an esteemed poet. —Mary Ann Moore reviews Hologram: An Homage to P.K. Page, by Yvonne Blomer and DC Reid (editors) (Qualicum Beach: Caitlin Press, 2023)
$26.00 / 9781773861135

Singing ‘bout revolution

A “lively musical and political education” for readers young and old. —Ron Verzuh reviews Rise Up and Sing!: Power, Protest and Activism in Music, by Andrea Warner (illustrated by Louise Reimer) (Vancouver: Greystone Kids, 2023) $26.95 / 9781771648981

A studio by the lake

“Hughes’ love of nature and the communities of the island shine as a record of twentieth century settlers in this lushly illustrated book.” Christina Johnson-Dean reviews E.J. Hughes: Life at the Lake by Robert Amos (Victoria: Touchwood, 2023) $25.00 ISBN 9781771514194

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