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Uncertain Kin by Janice Lynn MatherJanice Lynn Mather


It's Really 10 Months Special Delivery: A Collection of Stories from Girth to Birth

Natalie Guenther - 2015
    We promise to make you laugh and give you that much needed break in the middle of all the crazy.We have partnered with the most talented bunch of moms and dads to bring you the best, the funniest, and the most outrageous stories to get you from girth to birth.Are you having strange cravings? Have you asked yourself what in the hell is happening to my body? Have strangers touched your belly? If you've answered yes to any of these questions then this is the book for you! Prop up your cankles, grab a bowl of your favorite ice cream covered in olives and have a laugh with our crew. Things are about to get real.

Displaced: A Memoir

Esther Wiebe - 2020
    In the span of her early childhoodthrough adulthood, Esther takes you on a journey of unspeakable losses, survival,resilience and strong family bonds.For Esther, the youngest of fourteen siblings born into a conservative Mennonite Colony in the heart of South America, everyday life revolves around rules, routine and monotonous chores on a family farm without so much as electricity and running water. As she sees it, her childhood is normal and ordinary. That is until one catastrophic day when everything changes. Suddenly, eleven-year-old Esther must leave behind everything she’s ever known.This is the true, heartbreaking account of growing up in a Mennonite family and theharrowing events that eventually lead to her and her three youngest siblings’ dramatic escape to Canada. Everything Esther has ever known about her identity is left behind as she struggles to find a place for herself in a new country, a new culture, and a new language.

The Sudden Weight of Snow

Laisha Rosnau - 2002
    Seventeen-year-old Sylvia (Harper) Kostak is caught between her mother’s regrets and the strictures of small-town life in the interior of British Columbia. When Harper meets Gabe, an intense and enigmatic young man living on the ’60s-style arts commune outside of town, she is transfixed. Gradually we learn Gabe’s story and what led him to join his estranged mother on the commune, where, in a bid for freedom, Harper eventually finds herself, setting in motion a series of events leading to tragedy. Resonant with longing and a sense of isolation, the novel brings alive the agonies and ecstasies of growing up, sexual discovery, and how the need to belong can shape both decisions and destinies.Author Biography: Laisha Rosnau was born in Pointe Claire, Quebec, and grew up in Vernon, British Columbia. She has worked as a child-care worker, a landscaper, a waitress, a fruit picker, an interpretive guide, a journalist, and an editor. She received a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia, where she was the Executive Editor of PRISM international. Her poetry and short fiction have been published in literary journals and anthologies in Canada, the United States, and Australia. The Sudden Weight of Snow is her first novel. Laisha Rosnau lives in Vancouver, where she is at work on a collection of poetry and on her second novel.

The Life Of Margaret Laurence

James King - 1997
    The magnificent and long-awaited biography of the beloved writer who gave us the Manawaka novels, including The Diviners and The Stone Angel.

Willem De Kooning's Paintbrush

Kerry Lee Powell - 2016
    Ranging from an island holiday gone wrong to a dive bar on the upswing to a yuppie mother in a pricey subdivision seeing her worst fears come true, these deftly written stories are populated by barkeeps, good men down on their luck, rebellious teens, lonely immigrants, dreamers and realists, fools and quiet heroes. In author Kerry-Lee Powell’s skillful hands, each character, no matter what their choices, is deeply human in their search for connection. Powell holds us in her grasp, exploring with a black humour themes of belonging, the simmering potential for violence and the meaning of art no matter where it is found, and revealing with each story something essential about the way we see the world.A selection of these stories have won significant awards including the Boston Review fiction contest and The Malahat Review’s Far Horizons award for short fiction. For readers of Lorrie Moore, Denis Johnson and Michael Christie.

Frying Plantain

Zalika Reid-Benta - 2019
    We see her on a visit to Jamaica, startled by the sight of a severed pig’s head in her great aunt’s freezer; in junior high, the victim of a devastating prank by her closest friends; and as a teenager in and out of her grandmother’s house, trying to cope with the ongoing battles between her unyielding grandparents.A rich and unforgettable portrait of growing up between worlds, Frying Plantain shows how, in one charged moment, friendship and love can turn to enmity and hate, well-meaning protection can become control, and teasing play can turn to something much darker. In her brilliantly incisive debut, Zalika Reid-Benta artfully depicts the tensions between mothers and daughters, second-generation Canadians and first-generation cultural expectations, and Black identity and predominately white society.

All of Me

Anne Murray - 2009
    It is a candid retrospective of the extraordinary success achieved, and the prices that had to be paid.“After ‘Snowbird’ hit, I was swept up like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, and catapulted into a strange new universe … If I thought for a moment that I was really in control of events, I was deluded.” Anne MurrayAn unflinching self-portrait of Canada’s first great female recording artist, All of Me documents the life of Anne Murray, from her humble origins in the tragedy-plagued coal-mining town of Springhill, Nova Scotia, to her arrival on the world stage. Anne recounts her story: the battles with her record companies over singles and albums; the struggle with drug- and alcohol-ridden band members; the terrible guilt and loneliness of being away from her two young children; her divorce from the man who helped launch her career, Bill Langstroth; and the deaths of two of her closest confidantes. The result is a must-read autobiography by Canada’s beloved songbird.

How to Pronounce Knife: Stories

Souvankham Thammavongsa - 2020
    Thammavongsa is a master at homing in on moments like this -- moments of exposure, dislocation, and messy feeling that push us right up against the limits of language.The stories that make up How to Pronounce Knife focus on characters struggling to find their bearings in unfamiliar territory, or shuttling between idioms, cultures, and values. A failed boxer discovers what it truly means to be a champion when he starts painting nails at his sister's salon. A young woman tries to discern the invisible but immutable social hierarchies at a chicken processing plant. A mother coaches her daughter in the challenging art of worm harvesting.In a taut, visceral prose style that establishes her as one of the most striking and assured voices of her generation, Thammavongsa interrogates what it means to make a living, to work, and to create meaning.How to pronounce knife --Paris --Slingshot --Randy Travis --Mani pedi --Chick-a-chee! --The universe would be so cruel --Edge of the world --The school bus driver --You are so embarassing --Ewwrrkk --The gas station --A far distant thing --Picking worms

My Country: The Remarkable Past

Pierre Berton - 1976
    Lawrence, to the weird saga of Brother XII and his mystic cult on Vancouver Island.

Women Talking

Miriam Toews - 2018
    For the past two years, each of these women, and more than a hundred other girls in their colony, has been repeatedly violated in the night by demons coming to punish them for their sins. Now that the women have learned they were in fact drugged and attacked by a group of men from their own community, they are determined to protect themselves and their daughters from future harm.While the men of the colony are off in the city, attempting to raise enough money to bail out the rapists and bring them home, these women—all illiterate, without any knowledge of the world outside their community and unable even to speak the language of the country they live in—have very little time to make a choice: Should they stay in the only world they’ve ever known or should they dare to escape?Based on real events and told through the “minutes” of the women’s all-female symposium, Toews’s masterful novel uses wry, politically engaged humor to relate this tale of women claiming their own power to decide.

Boy Wonders: A Memoir

Cathal Kelly - 2018
    How did that day you've forgotten look? What did it feel like? Were you lonely? Did you have the sense you were progressing anywhere? Probably not. Yet string a few thousand of them together and that's a life. --From Boy WondersCathal Kelly grew up in the seventies and eighties, decades when dressing like Michael Jackson seemed like a good idea and The Beachcombers--an adventure show about logging--seemed to make sense. But apart from fashion missteps and baffling TV plotlines, Kelly's youth was a time of wonder, obsession and discovery. Navigating an often fraught fam­ily life, Kelly sought refuge in books, music, movies, games and at least one backyard hole. However, looking back he sees that his passion for George Orwell, Star Wars or The Smiths was never just about the book, movie or band. Rather, it was about the promise each new experience offered him in making sense of the world, and how he might find a home within it.By turns funny, elegiac and insightful, Boy Wonders is an unvarnished celebration of grow­ing up and stumbling toward identity. It's about the good and the bad of those brief years when we find purpose without end, obsession with­out limit and joy in the strangest of places.

Good Citizens Need Not Fear: Stories

Maria Reva - 2020
    So begins Reva's "darkly hilarious" (Anthony Doerr) intertwined narratives, nine stories that span the chaotic years leading up to and immediately following the fall of the Soviet Union. But even as the benighted denizens of 1933 Ivansk Street weather the official neglect of the increasingly powerless authorities, they devise ingenious ways to survive.In "Bone Music," an agoraphobic recluse survives by selling contraband LPs, mapping the vinyl grooves of illegal Western records into stolen X-ray film. A delusional secret service agent in "Letter of Apology" becomes convinced he's being covertly recruited to guard Lenin's tomb, just as his parents, not seen since he was a small child, supposedly were. Weaving the narratives together is the unforgettable, chameleon-like Zaya: a cleft-lipped orphan in "Little Rabbit," a beauty-pageant crasher in "Miss USSR," a sadist-for-hire to the Eastern Bloc's newly minted oligarchs in "Homecoming."

Morningside World Of Stuart Mclean

Stuart McLean - 1989
    Funny and charming, poignant and nostalgic, McLean's essays illuminate a world most of us take for granted. Among Stuart's favourites in this collection are:- the shocking truth about household dust- the importance of hardware stores- the sad, true tale of Anne, the street lady- an ode to the Popsicle, "one of the world's most perfect foods"- the story of the greatest game of Monopoly ever played.

WASP Sting

Lee A. Sweetapple - 2016
    As a Women Airforce Service Pilot (WASP), Trudy is one of the most knowledgeable flyers of the P-51 Mustang. She is in full command of one of the fastest airplanes ever made, but she is forbidden from going into combat because of her gender. Trudy is shocked when her dream of going to the front lines is fulfilled. The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) needs a pilot to sneak into German-occupied Lithuania and rescue a professor whose work could have international implications. But first, Trudy will have to get there. As Trudy crosses the United States and Canada with her handsome traveling partner, Major Rod Jackson, she sees the many different ways Americans and Canadians are helping on the home front. Her new base of operations in Duxford, England, will also give her a front-row seat to the violent, deadly aerial battles of the European theater. Trudy is determined to fight to protect the Allies, but will she make it out of her first operation alive?

Lear's Shadow

Claire Holden Rothman - 2018
    When the opportunity to work for an outdoor production of King Lear arises, she grabs it despite her utter lack of theatre experience.Things get off to a rocky start when Bea learns the artistic director, Arthur White, is a childhood friend whose presence stirs up painful memories. Then she inadvertently sparks the lascivious attentions of the aging star of the play and alienates the stage director, who happens to be his former wife. As Bea learns the ropes of her new role, her beloved but demanding father begins behaving erratically and losing himself in forgetfulness and her younger sister Cara reveals cracks in the foundation of her apparently perfect life as a devoted mother and co-owner, with her charismatic husband, of a successful raw foods restaurant.The sisters do their best to care for their father, but his deteriorating condition soon exceeds what either can handle. To make matters worse, the star of Lear is also faltering amidst the confusions of age, illness, and regret over transgressions from his past. In a masterful scene of raucous celebration whirling out of control, the various forces in Bea's life collide in a shocking act that could destroy more than one life--or reveal how those lives might come together in new and stronger ways.Tender, vivid, and powerful, Lear's Shadow is a richly satisfying exploration of how the ties of love can both bind and liberate us, and of how, even in the face of grief, we can embrace life.