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RACHEL’S SECRET, the book tour

Shelly Sanders YA Young adult Holocaust book KishnievWho says the book tour is a thing of the past?

Shelly Sanders, author of the critically lauded Rachel’s Secret (Second Story Press, 2012), is currently making the promotional rounds at Toronto-area schools and libraries. Upcoming stops include:

  • Friday, May 4 at Ardagh Bluffs School (Barrie);
  • Tuesday, May 8at St. Joseph School (Oakville);
  • Wednesday, May 9at W.H. Morden School (Oakville);
  • Tuesday May 15 at the Parkdale Public Library (Toronto);
  • Thursday, May 17at Pinegrove School (Oakville);
  • Wednesday, May 23at Florence Meares School (Burlington); and
  • Wednesday, May 30 at McKenzie-Smith Bennett School (Acton).

Also upcoming for Shelly is an appearance at Book Expo America–stay tuned for details!

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Maisonneuve celebrates tenth birthday with a reading by Anna Leventhal

Montreal author writer Sweet AfflictionThe always wonderful Maisonneuve magazine is celebrating ten years of publishing quality content, and they’ve invited contributor Anna Leventhal to join them. On Thursday, May 3rd, Anna–who’s published both fiction and interviews with the magazinewill read at Maisonneuve‘s Montreal birthday party with writers including David McGimpsey and Kathleen Winter.

Anna’s story “Last Man Standing,” which is included in Sweet Affliction (currently on offer), appeared in Maisonneuve Issue 40 (Summer 2011).

  • What: Maisonneuvetenth birthday party, featuring a reading by Anna Leventhal.
  • When: Thursday, May 3, 2012 at 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Eastern Bloc, 7240 Clark, 2nd Floor, Montreal, QC.
  • How: Admission is only $7.00 and includes either a free copy of the tenth anniversary issue of Maisonneuve or a tote bag. For more information, please see the Maisonneuve website.
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YA author Scarsbrook crosses over

Scarsbrook Author Young Adult YA Award Winner Award Winning ThistledownNoted young adult author Richard Scarsbrook is making a name for himself with readers of adult fiction. The White Pine Award-winner has just been named to the long list for the Vanderbilt-Exile $5,000 Short Fiction Award for “The Statistician,” a short-story adaptation of a chapter of his novel, The Indifference League (currently on offer).

Nominated here alongside established writers such as Leon Rooke, Richard has been quietly accumulating accolades for his adult short fiction, including a Matrix magazine/Pop Montreal LitPop Award for fiction, and a commendation from the 2009 Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Prize.

The shortlist for the Vanderbilt-Exile $5,000 Short Story Award will be announced before the end of this month. Best of luck to Richard and “The Statistician”!

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Shelly Sanders’ RACHEL’S SECRET receives 4 of 4 stars from CM Magazine

While its official publication date is still a few weeks off, Shelly SandersRachel’s Secret is already receiving rave reviews. Especially notable is this one from the University of Manitoba’s CM Magazine, in which the book is “highly recommended” and rated four of four stars.

First-time novelist Shelly Sanders masterfully reconstructs life in early 20th century Russia. And the skillful integration of the small details of daily life (the food, clothing, dwellings and activities) into a plot that is about to boil over, makes for a very rich reading experience…. Continue reading

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MENNONITES DON’T DANCE selected for Hamilton Reads

Darcie Hossack short stories award winning award-winningWhat better way to encourage Hamilton, Ontario residents to participate in this year’s GritLit literary festival than a city-wide version of the CBC literary competition, Canada Reads? And what better books to read than those shortlisted for the 2012 Ontario Library Association Evergreen Award, including Darcie Friesen Hossack‘s Mennonites Don’t Dance?

On this coming Wednesday, Hamilton residents will gather at the Central Library to hear ten prominent fellow citizens–including writer Miranda Hill, musician Jeremy Greenspan (of Junior Boys), and journalist Jeff Mahoney–champion each of the shortlisted books. This exciting evening of cultural and community engagement is not to be missed!

  • What: Hamilton Reads, featuring Mennonites Don’t Dance and the 2012 Evergreen shortlist.
  • When: Wednesday, March 28, 2012 at 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: Hamilton Public Library – Central Branch, 55 York Blvd., Hamilton, ON.
  • How: Admission is free, with doors opening at 7:00 p.m. For further information, please see the GritLit website.
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Young adult readers become journalists for meeting with Richard Scarsbrook

Here’s a treat! Two young fans got the chance to meet Richard Scarsbrook, author of the White Pine Award-winning The Monkeyface Chronicles, at the Ontario Library Association’s Super Conference earlier this year, and this is what ensued:

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Darcie Friesen Hossack’s university lecture available online

As previously announced, Darcie Friesen Hossack, author of the multi-award nominated Mennonites Don’t Dance (Thistledown Press 2010), was recently a guest of the University of Waterloo’s Conrad Grebel University College. Darcie was invited to take part in the college’s 2012 Mennonite Literature Lecture series, and spoke about how Mennonite culture has shaped her writing. A video of this talk, entitled “Writing Towards Home: A prodigal daughter looks back,” is now available online.

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Steven Skurka’s “Closing Arguments” available as podcast

Tilted The Trial of Conrad Black lawyer Skurka bookThere’s great news for Steven Skurka fans who live outside NewsTalk 1010′s listening area: Steven’s new radio show, “Closing Arguments,” is available as a podcast!

During the first episode of the show, which debuted yesterday afternoon, the Tilted author hosted noted lawyers Edward Greenspan–whose clients have included Conrad Black, Garth Drabinsky, and Karlheinz Schreiber–and Marie Henein–who represented former Ontario Attorney General Michael Bryant–in a roundtable discussion, and spoke to the National Post‘s Christie Blatchford about the media’s coverage of the recently concluded Shafia murder trial.

The full first episode of Steven Skurka’s “Closing Arguments” may be heard online now.

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Richard Scarsbrook to host 2012 White Pine Awards

White Pine winner Richard Scarsbrook Monkeyface Chronicles authorHis 2011 White Pine Award-win for The Monkeyface Chronicles (Thistledown Press 2010) is keeping author Richard Scarsbrook happily busy even a year later. He’s currently gearing up to host–with his characteristic energy and humour, no doubt–the 2012 White Pine Awards during the Ontario Library Association’s Festival of Trees. Join him as he helps the OLA to honour this year’s nominees!

  • What: 2012 White Pine Award ceremony, hosted by previous winner Richard Scarsbrook.
  • When: Tuesday, May 15, 2012 at 11:00 a.m.
  • Where: The WestJet Stage, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, ON
  • How: For only $14.00, tickets for the ceremony may be purchased online.

The details of Richard Scarsbrook’s other upcoming appearances may be found on the author’s website.

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Alison Lohans’ PICTURING ALYSSA a double-nominee!

alison lohans saskatchewan book award YA novel young adultAlison Lohans‘ young adult novel Picturing Alyssa (Dundurn Press 2011) has been shortlisted for two 2011 Saskatchewan Book Awards! Nominated for the Children’s Literature Award and the Regina Book Award, Picturing Alyssa follows young Alyssa Dixon as she steps back in time to escape her family’s troubles, only to discover that those living  in Depression-era Iowa have a set of troubles all their own. 

Previously Picturing Alyssa was praised by CM Magazine for its “realistic and touching” treatment of sibling relationships, and by the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix for its careful rendering of time travel.

The awards will be handed out in Regina, Saskatchewan, on April 28, 2012.

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