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LitBits 25

Posted by in LitBits

A sunny but cold day here in Belleville, Ontario, and a quiet day. I’m in need of some picking up, and you  may be too. Here’s a few literary tidbits to add a bit of fun. 1. I don’t know why I haven’t mentioned this magazine before. It’s called Bookmarks: For Everyone Who Hasn’t Read Everything. It’s American with a small staff, but it’s an impressive compilation of letters, selections (including literary, genre, non-fic titles), Have you Read? and Coming Soon books, books that have won awards, Now in Paperback…read more


This Ramshackle Tabernacle, by Sam Martin: A Review

Posted by in book reviews

I keep reading short story collections that take me by surprise with their intensity and impact. In fact, This Ramshackle Tabernacle, by Samuel Thomas Martin, affected me so deeply that this is my fourth attempt at blogging a review. I’ve deleted countless paragraphs and started over many times, unsatisfied with what I’ve written. And there’s so much to say, to highlight, but then I’d be stripping you of the optimal reading experience. I want to say: just buy it. Read it. You’ll be hard-pressed to be unmoved. But that’s cheating….read more


On the New Generation of CanLit

Posted by in other book stuff

Recently, Finnish journalist Verna Kuutti contacted me to ask a few questions for a story she’s doing on “contemporary Canadian literature and the generational shift that seemed to take place this fall.” Her story will appear in Finland’s largest newspaper Helsingin Sanomat. Verna wrote, “Canadian literature, and especially the more recent writers & works are still quite unknown in Scandinavia, so it would be great if you could help me spreading the word by answering a couple of questions.” Because some of these questions have arisen here in Canada, too, I thought I’d…read more


LitBits 19

Posted by in LitBits

So much interesting stuff lately that I had to do another LitBit post before my email exploded. Here we go! 1. This site is in Spanish, I know. But you can translate it, and the title then is Splashes in the World: Journal of illustration in books for children and youth. I adore children’s books. I sometimes buy them just for the beauty or perfection of the illustrations. My favourite art form ever? Children’s illustration, hands down. Yeah, that’s vague, and to get specific I’d be naming a ton of…read more


LitBits 13

Posted by in LitBits

There are so many wonderful and interesting things I come across in my Internet travels and much of it I unfortunately forget to tell you. However, here are a few gems for you. My apologies if you’ve already come across them in your own circles. 1. Esquire mag recently compiled a list of 75 books every man should read. Now, I agree with many of the titles on that list—you already know I love Carver, Cheever, McCarthy, Hemingway, and Co. And Haruf is also worthy, as are Steinbeck, Helprin, and…read more


Amazon Expanion Into Canada

Posted by in books

Despite petitions against Amazon’s proposal to physically expand into Canada and fear of how it would affect Canadian bookstores in particular, the Department of Canadian Heritage has approved the move. Amazon will be building a distribution centre here after all. When I first posted about this, the discussion centred on whether or not Canadian heritage and booksellers would suffer. According to Heritage Minister James Moore, however, Amazon has agreed to promote Canadian products and keep the country’s interest in focus. For a detailed look at the rationale behind the DCH’s…read more