What Canadian Literature are You Reading in 2019?

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What Canadian Literature are You Reading in 2019?

Jan 3, 2019, 9:22 am

Jan 3, 2019, 12:53 pm

Just finished Kingdom of the Blind by Louise Penny. Another solid book by her.

Editado: Jan 3, 2019, 10:23 pm

Thanks for starting the thread Lynn. I just picked up Big Lonely Doug: The Story of One of Canada’s Last Great Trees by Harley Rustad. Hope to start it tonight. I finished Kingdom of the Blind before Christmas and I thought it was good.

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Jan 4, 2019, 6:51 pm

>4 frahealee: I might have to join you on some Davies later on in the year. I keep stockpiling his essay collections and not reading them!

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Jan 5, 2019, 8:52 am

I haven't read Davies since I was far too young to appreciate him....maybe I'll join you!

Editado: Jan 5, 2019, 8:55 am

>6 frahealee: I've read the Cornish trilogy and his essay collection Happy Alchemy. Maybe I will read The Merry Heart this year.

>7 LynnB: That would be great! Maybe we could start a Davies group read thread later in the year.

Jan 5, 2019, 5:21 pm

i haven't read Davies for a very long time either. I just might join you on a group read. I remember loving his books that take place in Kingston (where I once lived).

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Jan 5, 2019, 6:25 pm

I've read all of Davies' novels I believe but I do have his biography by Val Ross still to go. I think his work is under-appreciated in Canada now and I would love to see that change. So good luck to all of you intending to read his books.

Jan 5, 2019, 7:55 pm

>10 frahealee: October sounds great to me!

Jan 6, 2019, 12:48 am

>3 mdoris:

I saw Big Lonely Doug when I was looking around for idea for SantaThing this year. The santee is fond of trees.

I don't believe that I've read any Davies. What's he like? (And what's the rest of his name so I can look him up. ;))

Jan 6, 2019, 1:36 am

>13 WeeTurtle: Robertson Davies


I guess I have read 6 of his but so long ago that for sure a re-read could be in order.

Jan 6, 2019, 9:01 am

I suggest that since frahealee launched what has morphed into a group read that frahealee choose the title and month. I think this will be fun!

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Jan 10, 2019, 9:43 pm

Well, I have no great plans or ambitions for my 2019 reading-I'll just see what I stumble across. I read a true crime book by Vancouver author Eve Lazarus last weekend, called Blood, Sweat and Fear and was quite interested in reading about the early developments of forensic science, in the backdrop of "old" Vancouver.

Jan 11, 2019, 4:40 am

>17 ted74ca: That sounds neat. I've been looking more at local literature and have been focusing on the area around the Straight of Georgia since I've spent most of my live between Nanaimo and Vancouver, with a couple stints further north in Fort St. John.

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Editado: Jan 26, 2019, 11:08 am

I just finished a couple:

French Exit by DeWitt. What an odd book! I mean, I knew it would be odd as Sisters Brothers was quite weird but this was so very different and so very odd. Malcolm and his mother have found themselves poor for the first time and so they sell all their belongings, gather up the cat (who is really her dead husband) and sail off to Paris. Soon, they are living in a borrowed apartment with a ragtag group of people who may or may not be friends. The story is weird but the humour is so subtle and wonderful.

Something for Everyone by Moore. A book of short fiction by an awesome Canadian writer. As usual, some stories were okay but others, like The Fjord of Eternity, The Challenges and Rewards of Re-entering the Workforce an Skywalk were great.

Editado: Jan 26, 2019, 11:52 am

Just finished Big Lonely Doug: The story of One of Canada's Last Great Trees by Harley Rustad and I thought it was very good. There are few readers so far however (4 on L.T !). It is about the forestry industry in B.C Vancouver Island. It was an eye opener and well written. Sorry, touchstones not working.

Jan 15, 2019, 4:57 pm

>21 mdoris: I am on hold at the library for that one. The cover makes me so sad! I am glad that he got saved even if all his friends were chopped down.

Editado: Jan 26, 2019, 11:11 am

Brother by Chariandy. This is only his second novel but it is wonderful. Michael and Francis are Trinidadian Canadian brothers growing up in the suburbs of Toronto. They are being raised by their mother, who works insane hours to keep a roof over their heads, and struggle to deal with poverty and racism.

It, along with Big Lonely Doug are on the Canada Reads long list this year.

Jan 26, 2019, 3:37 pm

Just finished Women Talking by Miriam Toews.Disturbing for sure, and thought provoking-one of those books I think I need to reread.

Jan 26, 2019, 3:58 pm

ted74ca, it is a great book....I hope my book club will decide to read it.

Jan 26, 2019, 11:29 pm

Currently trying to grab a copy of Fatty Legs from my library, but the hold refuses to show up and yet it should be there. It's supposed to be really good.

Jan 27, 2019, 7:55 pm

Started a reread of The Diviners by Margaret Laurence. It won the GG for fiction in 1974 and I think I must have read it around that time. So not a lot has stuck with me and I decided I should reread it. So far things are coming back to me but I'm pretty sure I will get much more out of this reading than I did when I was 20 something.

Jan 28, 2019, 1:51 pm

I'm reading The Nature of the Beast by Louise Penny for a book club.

Fev 2, 2019, 4:00 pm

Another great read: What They Wanted by Donna Morrissey.

Fev 7, 2019, 5:55 pm

Not exactly "heavy" reading, but I really enjoyed The Gown by Jennifer Robson

Editado: Fev 13, 2019, 12:47 pm

Just finished Cold Case Vancouver by Eve Lazarus. Definitely in need of a good editing, but the cases are very interesting.

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Fev 13, 2019, 5:48 pm

>32 frahealee: I've always found Short funny, but he can be a bit tiring. However, I loved his autobiography. I also listened on audio, and highly recommend it. His love of Canada, and his wife, and his basic decency shine through.

Fev 14, 2019, 7:40 am

Fev 14, 2019, 8:26 pm

>30 ted74ca: I'm looking forward to reading that too.

Mar 4, 2019, 12:17 am

Just finished another in Anne Emery's Collins & Burke mystery series based in Halifax: Children in the Morning. Really like these books.

Mar 11, 2019, 5:20 pm

I just finished Starlight the book Richard Wagamese was working on when he suddently died two years ago. If you have read Medicine Walk then you must read this book because it continues the story of Frank Starlight. It is unfinished but there were enough clues that we can figure out how it ended and what is there has some beautiful writing in it. I started off my review with this short quote "The morning was jubilant with light." I thought that was a exquisite piece of writing and I said that if I was able to write a sentence like that I would die happy so I hope Wagamese did.

Mar 18, 2019, 11:33 pm

I finished 4 Canadian books in a row:
Murder at McDonalds by Phonse Jessone (NF), Run Hide Repeat by Pauline Dakin (NF), Warlight by Michael Ondaatje, and The Golden Tresses of the Dead by Alan Bradley. Great stretch of books.

Editado: Abr 2, 2019, 6:50 pm

I've been travelling, and while away, I've read:

Brother by David Chariandy,
Suzanne by Anais Barbeau-Lavalette; and
Tiger in the Tiger Pit by Janette Turner Hospital

Abr 4, 2019, 3:24 pm

I'm about to start The Witches of New York by Ami McKay

Editado: Abr 19, 2019, 2:19 pm

Just finished and really, really enjoyed Warlight by Michael Ondaatje. I'd requested it from the library sometime ago, somewhat warily and only because of a friend's recommendation, as I'd never bothered to read any of Ondaatje's fiction since The English Patient, which I didn't like at all. The timing of Warlight coming available for me to read was quite serendipitous, as I'd just finished watching a series called Mrs. Wilson on PBS that I'd really liked. The parallels between the TV series (based on a true story) and Warlight were quite striking.

Abr 19, 2019, 3:33 pm

>41 ted74ca: I have Warlight waiting for me. I watched Mrs. Wilson too and thought it was good. I did like his Anil's Ghost but like you was not so enamoured with The English Patient when I read it years ago. Might be different if I read it now though.

Abr 19, 2019, 4:00 pm

>42 mdoris:. I think, too, that I'll have to try more of Ondaatje's novels now-it's been a long, long time since I read The English Patient and perhaps my whole perspective and reading tastes have changed since then.

Abr 20, 2019, 12:21 pm

As I said on another thread, I didn't like The English Patient much either. Then, several years later, I read the prequel, In the Skin of the Lion and developed a greater appreciation for English Patient in retrospect.

I'm reading The Quintland Sisters by Shelley Wood, a historical novel about the Dionne quintuplets.

Abr 23, 2019, 9:24 am

Abr 23, 2019, 9:24 am

Abr 27, 2019, 3:36 pm

I'm re-reading The Sisters Brothers, by Patrick deWitt, so that I'll be ready to watch the movie someday.

Abr 28, 2019, 7:51 am

I'm reading, and totally enjoying, Seep by W. Mark Giles

Abr 28, 2019, 6:18 pm

I finished Andrew Pyper's The Homecoming in one sitting because I just couldn't put it down. A chilling and creepy horror story that somehow seems plausible...

Abr 29, 2019, 4:01 pm

I'm reading Memory Board by Jane Rule

Abr 29, 2019, 10:46 pm

In reading the start of a new mystery series (new to me) The Beggar’s Opera by Peggy Blair. It is starting in Cuba, but I think a Canadian detective will eventually be part of this.

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Maio 12, 2019, 7:11 pm

This weekend I finished the seventh in Anne Emery's mystery series: Death at Christy Burke's. I was interested in the descriptions of the history of the "troubles" in Ireland, but the story moved along far too slowly for my liking.

Maio 26, 2019, 6:39 pm

Not my typical reading fare, but I really enjoyed The Witches of New York by Ami McKay.

Maio 26, 2019, 9:14 pm

I'm preparing to read Death on the Ice, by Cassie Brown, about the great Newfoundland sealing disaster of 1914.

Maio 26, 2019, 9:43 pm

>55 rabbitprincess: Oh my goodness. That is one of my all time favourite books. What an amazing story it tells.

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Editado: Jun 8, 2019, 6:22 am

>57 frahealee: you missed such an opportunity for the Stone trifecta - The Stone Diaries by Shields, lol.

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Jun 12, 2019, 12:29 pm

Jun 20, 2019, 1:51 pm

I'm about to start my latest LTER book, Blood Ties: A Cedric O'Toole Mystery by Canadian author Barbara Fradkin.

Jun 21, 2019, 1:03 pm

I've just started Our Homesick Songs by Emma Hooper.

Jun 22, 2019, 11:39 am

Just starting Clyde Fans, the new graphic novel by Seth.

Jun 26, 2019, 12:31 pm

I'm reading All Kinds of Truths by Wayne Turner.

Jun 28, 2019, 3:24 pm

I'm about to start Sarah Binks by Paul Hiebert

Jun 30, 2019, 1:59 pm

In honour of Canada Day, I'm sticking to Canadian books. Next up: Full Disclosure, a novel by our former Chief Justice, Beverley McLachlin.

Jul 18, 2019, 8:53 am

I'm staring my latest LTER book, The World on Either Side by Canadian author Diane Terrana.

Jul 20, 2019, 8:33 am

Jul 20, 2019, 1:54 pm

I'm working my way through a collection of essays by Hugh MacLennan: Scotchman's Return and Other Essays.

Editado: Jul 21, 2019, 10:58 am

Glass Houses by Louise Penny. Really enjoyed it.

Jul 21, 2019, 8:48 pm

I just went to the used bookstore the other day and picked up a volume of poems by Robert Service. They had a kid's copy of The Cremation of Sam Mcgee with the illustrations by Ted Harrison, but there was something suspicious brown and smeary on the bottom of the back cover. Alas! So I picked up the anthology since if his other poetry is of similar flow, I should enjoy it. :)

Still, nothing beats that Sam McGee narration by Max Ferguson. Shame it's not on TV anymore. I still want to buy a copy from the National Film Board of Canada. It has the same Harrison illustrations.

Jul 25, 2019, 8:27 am

I am re-reading Adultery by Richard B. Wright

Ago 4, 2019, 1:08 pm

Absolutely loved The Lost Garden by Helen Humphreys.

Ago 4, 2019, 3:02 pm

>73 ted74ca: I think that was the first Helen Humphreys book that I read and I've been a fan ever since. I just read The Evening Chorus which I thought was excellent as well.

Editado: Ago 4, 2019, 4:22 pm

I read any of Helen Humphreys that I can get my mitts on. I really like her non fiction books too. I especially liked The River but agree with you that The Lost Garden is excellent.

Ago 5, 2019, 12:43 pm

>75 mdoris: I was not aware of The River before but I did treasure my copy of The Frozen Thames which also had great illustrations. Helen Humphreys is a treasure I think.

Editado: Ago 5, 2019, 10:50 pm

>76 gypsysmom: Wendy I really liked The Frozen Thames too! Also read her Ghost Orchard which is non fiction too.

Ago 12, 2019, 11:44 am

I just finished reading a wonderful YA novel by a Canadian. The Taste of Rain by Monique Polak is about children living in a Japanese internment camp in China during World War II. Very interesting story and realistic handling of it. I got it as a LibraryThing Early Reviewer book; otherwise I'm sure I would not have come across it. It's publication date is September 3 so if you have any young readers on your Christmas list (especially girls) it would be a good choice.

Editado: Ago 12, 2019, 6:29 pm

>74 gypsysmom:. I really liked The Evening Chorus too. Actually, I've loved everything I've read by Helen Humphreys.

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Ago 12, 2019, 6:15 pm

A wonderful companion book for Sisters in the Wilderness is Sisters in Two Worlds by Michael Peterman. It’s a visual biography that is absolutely wonderful. Also, there is a graphic novel about the Sisters, written by Carol Shields but drawn and published after she died. Those are the two books I got to but I haven’t read Charlotte Gray’s book yet.

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Ago 19, 2019, 6:25 pm

Ago 24, 2019, 1:10 pm

Ago 26, 2019, 1:00 pm

I'm reading Bellevue Square by Michael Redhill for a book club.

Ago 26, 2019, 1:46 pm

I'm intermittently reading An Acre of Time, by Phil Jenkins. I borrowed it from my in-laws, so the return deadline is more flexible and it ends up getting pushed back for more time-sensitive reads.

Set 3, 2019, 12:18 pm

A very intriguing read-I stayed up too late to finish it and then couldn't fall asleep because I had so many questions buzzing about in my head: Foe by Iain Reid.

Set 7, 2019, 4:12 pm

I'm about to start Human Amusements by Wayne Johnston

Set 9, 2019, 5:51 pm

I'm finally reading a classic Canadian novel : The Diviners by Margaret Laurence. It's the last of her Manawaka cycle that I had left to read. I've really enjoyed all Laurence's books, so I'm a little sad to see them end for me.

Editado: Set 10, 2019, 11:35 pm

Sad but very interesting- Shelley Wood's fictionalized novel centered around the famed Dionne quintuplets: The Quintland Sisters.

Set 13, 2019, 4:18 pm

>89 raidergirl3: I reread The Diviners this year as well. I think I probably read it first just after it came out and so my memory of it was pretty foggy. I was really glad to refresh my memory. One of the things that I did remember from my first reading was the omnipresence of the river. I'm sure there is some theme associated with that but I'm not enough of a literature scholar to interpret it.

Set 15, 2019, 10:45 am

ted, The Quintland Sisters disturbed me, and I ended feeling almost guilty for buying it!

At the beginning of the book, I found myself quite engaged in the story of the main protagonist, Emma. As the story progressed, I became less comfortable with the way the father of the quintuplets, Oliva Dionne, was portrayed. I searched on google and found no evidence to support his portrayal as a predator of women. And I also noted that two of the Dionne quintuplets are still alive, which made this book all the more troubling. Not enough time has passed, I believe, to take so much liberty with this story.

Yes, I finished it -- I'm a bit compulsive that way -- but kind of wish I hadn't as the scene on the train just added to my dismay at the liberties taken with a character whom living people still know and care about.

Set 19, 2019, 1:48 pm

>92 LynnB:. Yes, it was very disturbing. So much exploitation seems to have taken place-by the Ontario gov't, by Dr. Dafoe, and by the parents, too. It's hard to separate rumours from the truth, esp. after all this time, though two of the quints apparently said later on that they were physically and mentally abused by their parents after they moved back into the family home. No wonder they left home at age 18 and wanted nothing more to do with any of the fame. Such sad lives they led.

Set 26, 2019, 11:41 am

>ted74ca: I was thinking of reading Pierre Berton's book about the quintuplets, but am not sure.

I'm about to start Where the River Narrows by Aimee Laberge.

Set 26, 2019, 2:40 pm

I seem to love anything about Newfoundland and The Wake: The Deadly Legacy of the Newfoundland Tsunami by Linden MacIntyre was no exception.

Set 26, 2019, 3:06 pm

When I was reading The Shipping News, a colleague from Newfoundland told me the best book about her home province is Random Passage by Bernice Morgan. She was right, in my opinion!

>mdoris, you may want to check it out!

Editado: Set 26, 2019, 3:22 pm

>96 LynnB: HI Lynn, Yes, I have read her book Random Passage and Waiting for Time and of course The Shipping News.
One of the most amazing books I have read about Newfoundland was by Cassie Brown about the very tragic sealing disaster in 1914 Death on the Ice.

Set 27, 2019, 7:09 am

I'll check that out....thanx.

Set 28, 2019, 8:48 pm

>95 mdoris: and >96 LynnB: One of my favourite books set in NF is Cloud of Bone by Bernice Morgan. It deals with the last Beothuk in Newfoundland. If you haven't read it you may want to check it out.

Set 28, 2019, 10:11 pm

>99 gypsysmom: Thank you Wendy. I have not read it so will put it on the list.

Set 28, 2019, 10:44 pm

>99 gypsysmom:,>100 mdoris: I totally agree! I’ve loved all Bernice Morgan books.

Set 29, 2019, 8:29 am

I also enjoyed Cloud of Bone

Out 14, 2019, 1:10 pm

Just finished The Testaments and gave it 5 stars. Whether or not you have read The Handmaid's Tale you should read this book. If you haven't read The Handmaid's Tale what's stopping you? Atwood is a genius at plotting and she is still at the top of her form.

Out 14, 2019, 8:43 pm

>103 gypsysmom: I wrote this before I saw the news that Atwood was the co-winner of the Booker Prize this year for The Testaments.

Out 23, 2019, 1:23 pm

I must confess to not understanding much of the book I just finished: I'm Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid. I read his second novel Foe a while back and was confused about a few things in that one, too, but this one is definitely "different". I can't even decide if I really liked it or if I hated it. Maybe I'll read it again at some point...

Out 25, 2019, 2:41 pm

Another 5 star read for me: Greenwood by Michael Christie. This book was on the Scotiabank Giller long list this year but for some reason did not make it to the short list. I've only read one Giller short list book so far (Lampedusa by Steven Price) and while I enjoyed it I don't think it is as important a book as this one is. There is a lot to think about in terms of human relationships with trees and forests and what the future of the world might look like if we don't take care of them.

Nov 6, 2019, 12:10 pm

Nov 6, 2019, 1:17 pm

Absolutely loved Ami McKay's memoir Daughter of Family G. Beautifully written and thought provoking-it appealed to me on so many levels. I was fascinated by the science of it all, being as I'm a medical laboratory technologist, but also really touched by the personal, often heartbreaking stories, which mirror some of my extended family stories. (Some relatives on my dad's side of the family have tested positive for a Lynch syndrome genetic marker and far too many have died of Lynch syndrome related cancers).

Nov 23, 2019, 10:51 am

Dez 2, 2019, 4:30 pm

Dez 10, 2019, 9:28 am

Watching You Without Me by Lynn Coady. I read this in one day and really, really liked it. Can't understand why I've not read anything by her before.

Dez 10, 2019, 4:58 pm

I want to read that, ted74ca! It's on the TBR shelves. My new year's resolution will be to read the books on the shelf before buying more....wish me luck!

Dez 13, 2019, 1:54 pm

>113 LynnB:. I hear you! I don't buy books new, but am constantly browsing in thrift and second hand book stores so my bookshelves are full of unread books, as is my coffee table and bedside table....Yet, I also keep requesting books from the library-48 on my request list and 150+ on my "For Later List". I'll have to live to be 150, at least.

Dez 13, 2019, 2:48 pm

>114 ted74ca: You describe the book situation perfectly! Any books on longevity?

Dez 13, 2019, 9:24 pm

Just finished Vimy, by Pierre Berton. This was a paperback copy owned by my grandmother. Toward the end of the book I found a flyer in it that she'd obviously been using as a bookmark.

Dez 29, 2019, 1:55 pm

Dez 29, 2019, 2:55 pm

Over the Christmas holidays I read Kingdom of the Blind, by Louise Penny.

Dez 29, 2019, 8:16 pm

>118 rabbitprincess: Synchronicity. If you scroll to the top of this page you will see that I started the year reading that.

Dez 29, 2019, 9:48 pm

This weekend I finished reading From the Ashes: My Story of Being Metis, Homeless and Finding My Way , a memoir by Jesse Thistle. Very moving.

Dez 30, 2019, 5:09 pm

>119 gypsysmom: Cool!

Tomorrow I will start on Solomon Gursky Was Here, by Mordecai Richler.

Dez 31, 2019, 12:28 pm

Please find the new thread for 2020!