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The Porcupine's Quill

POETRY MONTH! Weekly Picks

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This week, bpNichol's poetic legacy, Japanese forms, Earle Birney's essential readings and poetry for kids! Theseus by bpNichol, THESEUS is an important text that adds considerable gravitas to Nichol's poetic legacy, and the unique partnership between the two authors allows Nichol's words to be extended beyond the grave. "bpNichol was, and still is, the essential poet for so many of us." – Michael Ondaatje

BookThug ISBN 9781771660365 $15.00

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Shouting Your Name Down A Well by David McFadden, explores the Japanese forms of haiku and tankas. This is the first full-length collection of his work in those forms. The 400 or so poems in this collection create a mesmerizing overview of his life and his philosophy.

Mansfield Press ISBN 9781771260411 $20.00

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The Essential Earle Birney by Earle Birney, presents a wide-ranging selection of the celebrated Canadian poet's most memorable verse.

The Porcupine's Quill ISBN 9780889843738 $14.95

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Signs of Subversive Innocents by Cora Sire, travels the depth of human experience from the celebratory to the delusional. This debut collection by Cora Sir tells of characters and realms, both distant and familiar, with vibrant intensity and lyricism.

Signature Editions ISBN 9781927426388 $14.95

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Everyone is CO2 by David James Brock, debut poetry collection from the internationally acclaimed librettist and playwright. His subject matter is wide ranging, addressing the things that influence our private mythologies, from television to space exploration, from heavy metal to the epic of Gilgamesh.

Wolsak and Wynn Publishers Ltd. ISBN 9781894987837 $18.00

FOR THE KIDS...

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Hope is a Ferris Wheel by Robin Herrera, Moving to a new town has made it difficult for Star to make friends, when her classmates tease her because of where she lives and because of her layered blue hair. But when Star starts a poetry club, she develops a love of Emily Dickinson and, through Dickinson’s poetry, learns some important lessons about herself and comes to terms with her hopes for the future. "Well-constructed, thought-provoking and appealing, this first effort bodes well for the author’s future."-Kirkus Reviews

Abrams Books ISBN 9781419710391 $18.95

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Poetry for Young People: Robert Frost, stunning celebration of his best-loved work includes over 25 poems, including “Mending Wall,” “Birches” and, of course, “The Road Not Taken.” Henri Sorensen's gorgeous images perfectly complement each verse.

Sterling Publishing ISBN 9781454902881 $15.95

Atlantic Book Award Nominees

Atlantic AwardWe are thrilled to announce that we have SEVEN authors shortlisted for an Atlantic Book Award!

Tightrope author Keir Lowther, The Porcupine's Quill author Nicole Dixon and Breakwater Books author Lesleyanne Ryan have been shortlisted for the Margaret and John Savage First Book Award. This award, presented for the first time in 2003 with a value of $1,500, recognizes the best first book of fiction or non-fiction published in the previous year by an Atlantic writer.

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DirtyBirdCropRGB1-197x300Dirty Bird By Keir Lowther 9781926639529 Publisher: Tightrope Books

CBC Literary Award finalist Keir Lowther makes his debut with a novel that revolves around loved ones dead and alive, family or otherwise that haunts the modern psyche of one young boy, trapped in the grotesque world that surrounds him. Written in a creepy, deadpan, dark spiritual tone that will light a powder keg in the lukewarm waters of Canadian fiction. Dirty Bird is a family dystopia saga of anxiety and misplaced love, carved out in the spirit of spooky tradition of writers such as Tony Burgess, Joey Comeau and Lisa Foad.

hwm-finalHigh-Water Mark By Nicole Dixon 9780889843561 Publisher:  The Porcupine’s Quill

High-Water Mark is Bronwen Wallace Award–winner Nicole Dixon’s smart and sexy debut. These ten tightly written stories, touched with humour, focus on characters pursuing romantic and professional desires, and encountering and recovering from betrayal and heartbreak. A young woman and her partner discover that both going back to the land and raising a newborn are more difficult – and fraught with more unexpected dangers – than life in the city. A woman becomes sexually obsessed with a female friend after a six-year relationship ends. The east/west Toronto divide is just one conflict that arises among the three members of an all-female band. As the women in High-Water Mark run away and return, try love and sex, move from city to country, they are always challenged and changed. Dixon’s perceptive, witty, no-nonsense collection authentically captures the voices of women in a way rarely found in mainstream fiction.

Bracoviewpic2.php By Lesleyanne Ryan 9781550813340 Publisher: Breakwater Book

Winner of the 2011 Fresh Fish Award for Emerging Writers, Lesleyanne Ryan’s debut novel, Braco, takes place over the five days following the fall of Srebrenica in 1995. The narrative follows the perspectives of Bosnian civilians, UN Peacekeepers, Serbian and Bosnian soldiers, as well as a Canadian photojournalist. A retired veteran and former Bosnian Peacekeeper, Ryan vividly captures the visceral tension and horror of Bosnian refugees fleeing Srebrenica, the ensuing massacre of Bosnian men, and the inability of the Dutch peacekeepers to protect them. The award judges acclaimed the debut novel as a “compelling, captivating, and fast-paced novel, from its vivid and intriguing prologue set in Srebrenica to an ending that fits, if not satisfies.”

 

Creative Book Publishing author Mike Heffernan and Breakwater Books author Joan Sullivan have been shortlisted for the Rogers Communications Award for Non-Fiction and ECW Press author George Murray and Vehicule Press author Mark Callanan have been shortlisted for the E.J. Pratt Poetry Award.  These two awards are a part of the Newfoundland and Labrador Book Awards which carry the distinguished patronage of the Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador.

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The Other Side of Midnight: Taxicab Stories By Mike Heffernan 9781897174968 Publisher: Creative Book Publishing

The first St. John’s taxi stand started up in the early-20th Century and greatly expanded prior to the Second World War. There are now almost four hundred taxis operating within the city limits. The Other Side of Midnight: Taxi Cab Stories is not a traditional history of taxi cabs in St. John’s. It describes the commonly shared experiences of an underwritten portion of Newfoundland’s working class while presenting St. John’s from the front seat of a taxi cab. It will explore the working lives of its subjects, as well as their thoughts and feelings about their choice of career and their clients. Every segment of our society utilizes their services, from the social elite to the social obsolete: businessmen, drug pushers, prostitutes and forlorn lovers. They are witnesses to the best and worst in all of us. They are trained listeners to troubled people, as well as cheerleaders and goodwill ambassadors. Individuals will emerge, as well as equally unique understandings of their working lives. Comical, absurd and often dramatic, many of their reminiscences will be of long hours and years on the job, their hopes and decayed dreams.

In the Fieviewpic2.phpld By Joan Sullivan 9781550813913 Publisher: Breakwater Books

Freelance writer and playwright Joan Sullivan’s book In the Field is a work of non-fiction that tells the story of one young Newfoundlander soldier, Stephen Norris, lost in WWI, and how his death affected his family, his community, and, decades later, an entirely new generation. In 2004, a high school theatre class creates a musical about the Newfoundland Regiment. After pulling off a big production, teachers, students, and parents venture out on an overnight camping trip to Three Arm, where they find the remains of Stephen Norris’s boat. In the Field captures the haunting and profound experiences of adventure and homecoming.

Whiteout9781770410879 By George Murray 9781770410879 Publisher: ECW Press

Poetry that explores how accidental voyeurism can force reconsideration and reconciliation. White⋅out: n. a surface condition … in which no object casts a shadow, the horizon cannot be seen, and only dark objects are discernible … Whiteout: when the heavy weather of daily life establishes the measure of the measureless; when the predatory nature of the accidental conjures cowboys and the comatose; when the sickly sweet pop of life underfoot contrasts the televised image, shrinking to a pinprick. Whiteout: calques and towers, twin polar storms, falling, burning. Whiteout: “a book of white nothing.”  George Murray’s sixth collection has been a decade in the making. At once taut, tender and terrifying, haunted and haunting, Whiteout shatters convention in the collision of order and rage, formlessness and hard-won serenity.

Gift Horse483 By Mark Callanan 9781550653229 Publisher: Vehicule Press

Gift Horse, Mark Callanan’s second full-length collection of poetry, was largely written following a near-fatal medical emergency in 2007. The poems offer up the story of a young man whose gratitude at being alive is undercut by Lazarus-like confusion and ambivalence. Brandishing a newly acute sense of mortality, Callanan emerges as an Atlantic flâneur stalked by terrifying sea legends, death-steeped domesticity (where even supermarket lobsters “weigh in against oblivion”) and the extinct Newfoundland Wolf. Understated, sinister and unsettling, Gift Horse is a work of considerable craft and vision.

The 2013 Atlantic Book Awards and Festival runs May 9-16 and the awards will be announced at a special ceremony on the last night of Festival, Thursday, May 16, at 7:00p.m. at the Alderney Landing Theatre in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. For more details visit the Atlantic Book Awards website:  http://www.atlanticbookawards.ca/.

Congratulations to all of our nominees!!!