Canadian novels

A little while ago PHX asked me if I had a top 3 Canadian authors and I can’t say that I honestly do. I can’t even say if I have a favourite author but what I can do is give you five six seven (I obviously kept coming back and adding more) newer Canadian novels that I have enjoyed – some recently and some that just stuck with me. Some of these are really well known (like the top three) and some of them aren’t but are really worth the read. I’m not going to give synopsis about the novels, abortion there are enough reviews on the internet if you are interested. I focused on recent novels because I am starting a project about classic Canadian literature that I will talk more about in the fall.

The Birth House by Ami McKay

McKay is an American married to a Canadian which makes her a Canadian author! (Seriously, hospital we take who we can get – most of the early Can Lit. Canon is by people who came from away). I almost got to interview Ami for one of the local papers but I was away at the time! I was so disappointed. Besides being a fantastic story, food I loved that it was set in rural N.S. near our cottage because I could really visualize the area.

A Complicated Kindness by Miriam Toews

Pretty well known right and it deserves all the praise it is getting. If you haven’t heard of it I would be surprised.

Clara Callan by Richard B. Wright

I wanted to read this book for years but didn’t get around to it until we were traveling through Ireland. I left it on the bookshelf at the hostel in Omagh – I like to spread the Canadian Lit. around so I bring Canadian books with me when I travel.

Before I Wake by Robert J. Wiersema

I probably would have never read this book if I wasn’t reviewing it for the local paper. I can’t remember exactly what I said but something along the lines of how at the onset I thought it was going to be your typical, depressing Canadian novel about a family losing a child and the struggle between the parents to find meaning in life saga – but it is so not! It was truly a surprise.

Doubting Yourself to the Bone by Thomas Trofimuk

Another gem that came to me from doing book reviews. Seriously – just go read this book. It made me laugh, cry and want to move to small town B.C. and live with Buddhist Monks.

Madame Zee by Pearl Luke – also check out her book Burning Ground

I read Burning Ground years ago. I think Luke wrote it as part of her graduate thesis at the U of C. Madame Zee is a fictional account of a real life character who was part of a notorious cult in Canada. Also, my sister and I were out looking at open houses years ago happened to be in Luke & her partner’s house (I had just read Burning Ground so I knew who she was). Needless to say, it was just like what you would expect an author’s house to look like – bookshelves everywhere and cool art. It was awesome.

Crow Lake by Mary Lawson

Very moving and quite sad. I felt very emotional reading it. Also left at that hostel in Ireland.

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