The Back Forty

Back forty: n. wild or rough terrain adjacent to a developed area. I wasn’t sure what to expect of this morning—I only know that it far exceeded what I could have imagined. My husband of 11 years woke me up with the best birthday card I’ve ever received. I was ugly crying before I even [...]

The Book Blogger’s Responsibility: What?

There’s an article called “Has book blogging hit the wall? William Morrow’s blogger notice” posted online in the LA Times Books section. Apparently it’s causing a stir, though I admit to not having read a single reactionary comment yet. My apologies, then, if the following smacks of ignorance. The gist of the article, though I [...]

LitBits 9

1. I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas, with some literary treats to boot! Of the 5 gifts I received, every single one paid tribute to my love of books. My sisters are great is awesome! I received the new Oxford Classics edition of Dickens’s A Christmas Carol (and his other Christmas stories); the CD [...]

To Read, Perchance to Redeem Myself

Sunday morning on the couch in my pajama bottoms, a Go Korea soccer tee-shirt that C bought me when he went there, and a purple yoga hoodie. The 30-year old furnace growls comfortingly yet I leech heat from the dog and cup after cup of select herbal teas. I listen to the steady rain, random [...]

Reading Roulette and the Art of Persuasion

I’ve made mention of Reading Roulette before, but if you haven’t yet seen what it is, it’s the exciting project instigated by Jen Knoch and Erin Balser over at the Keepin’ It Real Book Club site. The objective of Reading Roulette is to persuade fellow readers to step out onto that dangerous road (you never [...]

Word on the Street Toronto Day 2

Word on the Street Day 2 is continued from Word on the Street Day 1. I awoke after about three hours’ sleep on Sunday morning. Maybe less. I don’t know, that night is a blur. We went to bed ridiculously late, I buzzing with the heebie jeebies from having just witnessed a cockroach (flippantly nicknamed [...]

For Love or Money

So even though when I started at our indie bookstore a month ago I was told that full time was very unlikely, possibly not until over a year from now, if ever, I’ve been offered full time. When the boss sent a message on Sunday asking if I could meet her in a couple of [...]

Cool Stuff for Booklovers

[NB: Clicking on photos should take you to the websites they come from so you can see more pics as well.] I have wanted one of Caitlin Phillips‘s book purses for eons. But I still can’t decide which book I want and it would have to be one that could be found in rough shape [...]

"This is not about food": An evening with Joanne Harris

Ottawa, Mayfair Theatre, 18 May 2010 Who’s Who lists her hobbies as “‘mooching, lounging, strutting, strumming, priest-baiting and quiet subversion of the system,’ although she also enjoys obfuscation, sleaze, rebellion, witchcraft, armed robbery, tea and biscuits. She is not above bribery and would not necessarily refuse an offer involving exotic travel, champagne or yellow diamonds [...]

Canada Reads Day Four

Phew, what a long, busy day at work. I’m finally home, finally fed, and finally ready to post commentary on Day Four of Canada Reads. Once again, I’m not recapping but assuming you’ve already heard the discussion. These debates interest me immensely, and as we edge closer to the number one book, I find myself [...]


I know you’re very busy, Mr. Harper. We’re all busy. But every person has a space next to where they sleep, whether a patch of pavement or a fine bedside table. In that space, at night, a book can glow. And in those moments of docile wakefulness, when we begin to let go of the [...]

Betrayed by Your Bookshelves?

My library is not a single beast but a composite of many others, a fantastic animal made up of the several libraries built and then abandoned, over and over again, throughout my life. I can’t remember a time in which I didn’t have a library of some sort. The present one is a sort of [...]