Back of the road a ways
Brighten the Corner Where You Are, Carol Bruneau. Vagrant Press, 2020.
Sometimes a gifted writer can convey a character by getting an absolute sense of that character’s voice. It is a peculiar kind of ventriloquism, some kind of almost hypnotic union, and when it works it is absolutely brilliant, as it is in Brighten the Corner Where You Are, by Carol Bruneau.
What is your Emergency?
The Waiting Hours, Shandi Mitchell. Viking, 2019.
This very accomplished novel is by a Maritime writer I had never run into before, although she has written another, Under This Unbroken Sky, which I intend to read now.
The Waiting Hours is about emergency workers, and the “waiting hours” of the title, is the period during the depths of the night when, if anything happens, it is usually terrible.
Is there anyone else out there who loves a big, thick, old-fashioned novel that is written with such sparkle and fluidity that you dive right in and only come up for air at three am when your vision shuts down and your bed has become a raft on the ocean of that new world? A.S. Byatt’s Possession is one such book for me.
Best Canadian Stories 2019
Edited by Caroline Adderson
Reviewed by Megan Kuklis:
"If a person had nothing but this collection of stories from which to judge the state of fiction in Canada, they would come away believing that Canadians are delightfully chaotic and completely insane...."
By Megan Kuklis
A Review of Darusha Wehm's The Home for Wayward Parrots (NeWest Press, 2018)
The Home for Wayward Parrots by Darusha Wehm is a charming novel that centres on the complicated lives of its many sweet characters. Exceptionally readable, the novel flows through the past and present of Brian “Gumbo” Guillemot’s life with such care that readers will not be able to put it down. This novel should be devoured in a single sitting.