5 Great Canadian Reads For Fall 2019

Curl up with new fiction, non-fiction and poetry by great Canadian authors…

2019 was a great year for Canadian literature. Here’s 5 books from the past 12 months that you may not know about, but definitely deserve your attention. Take your pick, find a chair, and immerse in all the words and worlds the Great White North has to offer.

Novel: Reproduction by Ian Williams
Ian Williams is a prominent Canadian poet who’s poetry collection Personals was shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize, the largest prize for poetry in Canada. Reproduction is Williams’ debut novel. This is an emotional and uniquely stylish love story between two Torontonians from vastly different worlds. The languages of the neighbourhood it’s set in is almost as diverse as Williams’ own.

Short Fiction: The Forbidden Purple City by Philip Huynh
Another debut, The Forbidden Purple City is a collection of short stories focused around the Vietnamese diaspora. This book evokes the sensory experiences of Vietnam so powerfully you’d think you were there. Like so many great Canadian works, it seems to straddle the line between two geographies, transporting the reader to homes and histories they’d never expect.

Novel: Warlight by Michael Ondaatje
This new book by one of the greatest Canadian novelists alive is set in a London still reeling from the Second World War. The eccentricity of this book’s enigmatic character The Moth recalls the romance and joy of Caravaggio in Ondaatje’s famous novel In the Skin of a Lion. It’s evidence CanLit’s old guard has still got it.

Non-fiction: The Reality Bubble by Ziya Tong
The Reality Bubble is an incredible piece of scientific writing. This philosophically insightful work by the former host of The Daily Planet explores all the sensory, social, and survivalist blindspots of the human condition. Opening up the hidden world of nature, it reminds us how little of reality we beasts are truly aware of.

Poetry: Mad Long Emotion by Ben Ladouceur
Ben Ladoucer’s poems are eloquent, emotional, incisive, and deceptively simple. He’s a great poet to become interested in if you aren’t interested in contemporary poetry (yet). This collection published by the Canadian landmark press Coach House Books expands the concept of desire to include flowers, fish, fossils and us. These poems deconstruct love, and the love poem, flirting seductively across species and language rules.

Zach Buck

Zach Buck

Zach Buck is a writer and editor currently living in South Korea. He serves as the official editor of Spatial Studies magazine HEADREST. In 2016 he released experimental digital archive game house.xct_ with Other Families, and it can be read about on otherfamilies.ca.

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