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Category: Essays

28 Rep Picks to Read this Spring

by Melissa
Biography & Memoir + Essays + Fiction + Graphica + Kids + Picture Books + YA Fiction / March 16, 2018

Spring is finally here, and with the new season comes a whole new batch of favourite books! Check out our sales reps' picks for the season and get those TBR lists ready!

 

Jessica Price

The Year of Less
by Cait Flanders

“The remarkable true story of a young woman who got herself out of debt by radically simplifying and redefining what it means to have, and be ‘enough.’”

Yoga Storytime
by Miriam Raventos, illustrated by Maria Giron

“Simple text paired with beautiful illustrations make this the perfect book to introduce children to the practice of yoga.”

 

Jenny Enriquez

Shit Is Real
by Aisha Franz

“A graphic novel chock-full of existential millennial themes? Sign me up!”

Children of Blood and Bone
by Tomi Adeyemi

“So excited about this new fantasy series! A high stakes adventure about a teenage girl named Zelie who has a chance to restore magic back to her home on Orisha, with the help of her brother and the fugitive Crown Princess. The striking cover art has been all over social media, so I am clearly not alone in my excitement!”

 

Saffron Beckwith

The Merry Spinster
by Mallory Ortberg

“Ortberg’s Texts from Jane Eyre was a hoot; this takes it up a notch with feminist fairy tales that are dark and playful.”

Sylvia Long’s Big Book for Small Children
by Sylvia Long

“I have been a huge fan of Sylvia Long’s for decades; she has brought together a number of our favourite classics in a wonderful treasury.”

 

Morgen Young

Carnegie’s Maid
by Marie Benedict

“Set in mid-nineteenth century Pittsburgh, this impeccably researched novel tells the tale of Clara Kelly, maid to Andrew Carnegie’s mother, in the time when Pittsburgh was earning its name as a steel town; before Carnegie was the philanthropist he would become. At heart a tale of the immigrant experience and the power of ambition, we see the undeniably important role Clara played in Carnegie’s life, and the risks she took along the way.”

Ocean
by Ricardo Henriques, illustrated by Andre Letria

“Amazing fun facts about ocean life and exploration throughout history for 8-12 year olds! These super cool illustrations will catch the eye of both parent and child alike and will be a perfect summer title for 2018.”

 

Lorna MacDonald

The Dry
by Jane Harper

“In the process of investigating his friend’s death, Melbourne Federal Agent Aaron Falk finds that small towns can harbour big secrets. Published in hardcover in January 2017, The Dry received stellar reviews both at home and abroad—The New York Times called it ‘a breathless page turner.’ This is an atmospheric mystery with surprising revelations and plot twists.”

The Big Bed
by Bunmi Laditan, illustrated by Tom Knight

“Two’s company. Three’s a crowd. A determined toddler explains why she needs to sleep in the big bed with Mommy and not in her own little bed. Only problem is Daddy taking up a lot of space. There’s no way three of them can fit in the bed comfortably. So Daddy has got to go—but not too far. Author Bunmi Laditan, creator of the blog The Honest Toddler, puts a new twist on a perennial parental struggle! This is a bedtime story to make both parents and toddlers laugh out loud.”

 

Evette Sintichakis

Sometimes I Lie
by Alice Feeney

“Why is Amber in a coma? Why doesn’t her husband love her anymore? What does she know? WHAT IS SHE LYING ABOUT!? Sometimes I Lie is so twisty and Amber so unreliable—you truly won’t see the twist coming!”
 

Unicorn (and Horse)
by David W. Miles and Hollie Mengert

"'Unicorn dances. Tra la la! Horse sits grumpy. Blah blah blah.' This is not your typical glitter and rainbows unicorn book! Kids and adults will both love this hilarious story that ultimately reminds us about the power of friendship even though we may be different."

 

Karen Stacey

How to Swear
by Stephen Wildish

“Chats, text, tweets. Some say we’re losing proper English usage. Art of conversation? Here’s your chance to refine your language skills, Chronicle style!! A new addition to our nasty words publishing program.”

I Got It!
by David Wiesner

“Each of David Wiesner’s amazing (almost) wordless picture books reveal the magic in simple everyday settings. A great journey of imagination.”

 

Ali Hewitt

How to Write an Autobiographical Novel
by Alexander Chee

“Alexander Chee’s Queen of the Night was such a gorgeous and special book, and now he’s written a collection of essays that weaves together his coming of age as a man, writer, and activist, exploring the craft of writing, and the many facets of his identity.”

I Love Kisses
by Sheryl McFarlane, illustrated by Brenna Vaughan

“A charming picture book about the many kinds of love a toddler can experience. Inspired by my niece and written by her extremely fond grandmother (my very own mum!).”

 

Dani Farmer

Even the Stiffest People Can Do the Splits
by Eiko

“I have NEVER been able to do the splits, even as a little kid. It’s perpetually on my New Years resolution list and I’m hoping, with the help of the Marie Kondo of stretching, that I’ll finally achieve my goal. Hopefully the rest of my colleagues will join me in doing some fun stretching too!”

As You Wish
by Chelsea Sedoti

“Being a teen in a small town is tough. High school, popularity, family issues, big decisions... But what if one of the big decisions you had to make was a single, magical wish? Suddenly, turning eighteen just got a whole lot more complicated!”

 

Judy Parker

What to Do When I’m Gone
by Suzy Hopkins, illustrated by Hallie Bateman

“I am a mother to daughters, and a daughter who lost her mother, and this graphic novel spoke to both of those sides of me. I could hear the advice my mother might have given me and could see myself giving advice to my daughters but the messages in the book reach beyond those roles. It is really about love and grief and life and the format is so accessible and immediate. Highly recommended.”

Polly Diamond and the Magic Book
by Alice Kuipers, illustrated by Diana Toledano

“Alice Kuipers is a well known Canadian author who has published in the teen and picture book market. Her new character, Polly Diamond, is an absolute charmer and she will be an inspiration to young writers everywhere. An engaging main character, a realistic family and a book that writes back to Polly combine in this great new series for emerging chapter book readers.”

 

Laurie Martella

The Radium Girls
by Kate Moore

“The true story of the young women who worked in deadly radium factories during WWI. The book reveals how their daily exposure and ingestion of the poisonous substance caused serious illness and death—all the while they were assured that this new, glowing substance was completely safe. In fact, their jobs as the shining girls was coveted. I encourage you to learn more about these extraordinary women, and read this carefully researched sad, sad story.”

Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years
by Stacy McAnulty, illustrated by David Litchfield

“Fun and whimsical, written by beloved children’s author Stacy McAnulty, and illustrated by the award winning and amazing illustrator David Litchfield, but told from the POV of Earth itself.”

 

Vanessa Di Gregorio

A Conjuring of Light
by V. E. Schwab

“The final book in the Shades of Magic trilogy has EVERYTHING. If this epically perfect series hasn’t been on your radar, it should be! Especially since it was just announced that there will be another four books set in the Shades of Magic universe—another trilogy and a standalone set in the future.”

100 First Words for Little Geeks
Familius

“This IS the book you’ve been looking for. As a geek mom with a geek baby (sorry Link!), this is exactly the kind of book I would love to get as a gift. Simply perfect!”

 

Laureen Cusack

The Mitford Murders
by Jessica Fellowes

“Based on a real unsolved murder! Set in London in 1920, a young impoverished woman is hired as a chaperone to Nancy Mitford and gets caught up in a murder that will haunt her and Nancy for decades to follow.”

I Really Want to See You, Grandma
by Taro Gomi

“With sparse text and bold illustrations, Taro Gomi captures the essence of that special grandparent-child bond.”

 

Louis-Marc Simard

Child of a Mad God
by R. A. Salvatore

“Few people in fantasy are as well established as R. A. Salvatore. In Child of a Mad God, Salvatore brings his storytelling talents to a whole new world: one where a young woman, a witch’s daughter, struggles to find her place in a barbaric world, as well as understand her origins. Fans of action and adventure will devour this new series debut, and hunger for more!”

The Brilliant Deep
by Kate Messner, illustrated by Matthew Forsythe

“In 2014, more than twenty species of coral were classified as endangered in the United States. In this nonfiction picture book, award-winning author Kate Messner tells the story of Ken Nedimyer, who, along with his daughter, founded the Coral Restoration Foundation. Matthew Forsythe’s gorgeous illustrations bring Ken’s quest to save the world’s coral reefs to life with its vibrant colours and bold art style.”


24 Rep Picks to Read this Fall

by Brooke
Art & Photography + Biography & Memoir + Essays + Fiction + Food & Drink + Graphica + Humour + Kids + Picture Books + YA Fiction / October 03, 2016



Fall is here! And fall = not feeling guilty about staying in all weekend with your books. So if you're ready to curl up with a blanket and a good read, but not sure which book to pair with your pumpkin spice beverage, let some of the pros help you out with some of their favourite books of the fall season.
 

Judy Parker

The Guineveres
by Sarah Domet
"I am eagerly anticipating The Guineveres. The editors at Flatiron Books have not yet let me down as they have introduced me to new voices and new stories in the past. Debut author Domet’s story of the complicated nature of female friendship is already receiving early rave reviews, including a comparison to The Virgin Suicides. I can’t wait!"
 
Waiting for Snow
by Marsha Diane Arnold, illustrated by Renata Liwska
"Despite complaints about long winters, we prairie people love the first snow! Waiting for Snow charmingly reflects the excitement and impatience of children waiting for those first snowflakes. Renata Liwska’s adorable illustrations of the cast of animals coming together to try to make it snow and learning that everything happens in its own time are spot on. This is a wonderful celebration of snow and an ode to the virtues of patience!"

 

Dani Farmer

Bad Girls Throughout History
by Ann Shen
"I’m a fan of any book that puts historical figures like Ada Lovelace alongside modern heroines like Malala Yousafzai. These 100 women deserve to be remembered for challenging the establishment with their politics, innovations and talents; after all, in the immortal words of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, 'Bitches get stuff done.'”
 
Vassa in the Night
by Sarah Porter
"Urban fantasy and Russian folklore make for page-turning magic when Brooklyn is plunged into darkness and Baba Yaga is to blame."
 
 

Ryan Muscat

We Gon' Be Alright
by Jeff Chang
"Jeff Chang is one of America’s most astute cultural observers, and in We Gon’ Be Alright, he turns his attention to race in America in light of police killings of unarmed civilians, Ferguson, and Black Lives Matter. Chang is the acclaimed author of Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip Hop Generation, and Who We Be. Built around a central essay on Ferguson and the killing of Michael Brown, We Gon’ Be Alright is an impassioned and charged look at the most contentious issues in the current discussion of race in America."
 
Gertie's Leap to Greatness
by Kate Beasley, illustrated by Jillian Tamaki
"In what’s sure to be an instant classic in the vein of Ramona Quimby, Gertie’s Leap to Greatness is a sweet and heartwarming story about a precocious and sassy young girl trying to be the best fifth grader ever, in order to show her absent mother what she’ll be missing if she leaves town. This is a masterful debut novel for Kate Beasley, and the book is also filled with gorgeous illustrations by the fantastic Toronto cartoonist Jillian Tamaki, a Governor General’s Award and Caldecott-winning veteran."
 
 

Laurie Martella

The Other Einstein
by Marie Benedict
"This is the untold story of Mileva Maric Einstein, a brilliant math scholar and Albert Einstein’s first wife. It’s the subject of debate just how much scientific contribution she had made to her husband’s famous works. A little more recognition would be nice."
 
The Trap (new in trade paper)
by Steven Arntson
"It’s A Wrinkle in Time set in the 1960s, small town Iowa. A sci-fi mystery that has four friends who travel through the “subtle plane” (sound familiar?) and discover that they are not the only ones with this amazing ability to have out-of-body experiences. Fun middle grade read!"

 

Lorna MacDonald

Table Manners
by Jeremiah Tower, illustrated by Libby VanderPloeg
"An entertaining and practical guide to manners for everyone and every occasion by Jeremiah Tower — a larger than life celebrity chef and food entrepreneur. Tower has advice on everything: food allergies, RSVPs, iPhones, running late, thank-yous, restaurant etiquette, even what to do when you are served something disgusting. Witty design and line drawings, couples with practical bits of advice make this an ideal gift for anyone of any age. This is Strunk & White for the table."
 
The Storybook Knight
by Helen Docherty, illustrated by Thomas Docherty
"From the author illustrator team who brought us the best-selling Snatchabook, The Storybook Knight celebrates the power of reading and the love of a good book. Leo is a gentle knight — a reader not a fighter. But his parents want him to battle griffins and trolls and slay dragons. Leo sets out on a quest with a sword and a shield and plenty of books. He manages to tame a number of unruly beasts in his own way — through the power of a good story. Written in rhyming text and richly illustrated, this is a story to delight children and parents alike."
 
 

Saffron Beckwith

Small Victories
by Julia Turshen, foreword by Ina Garten
"This is a fantastic book filled with tricks and tips and more importantly, yummy things to eat!"
 
The Odyssey: A BabyLit Monsters Primer
by Jennifer Adams, illustrated by Alison Oliver
"What a great addition to this awesome series... finally I can get all those mythical creatures straight!"
 
 

Jenny Enriquez

Mooncop
by Tom Gauld
"I absolutely loved Tom Gauld’s Goliath so I’m very excited for Mooncop, the story of the last policeman on the moon. This may be a sci-fi tale, but at its core it’s a very human story about looking to connect with others that’s perfect for both sci-fi fans and the general reader."
 
Bunny Slopes
by Claudia Rueda
"This very entertaining interactive picture book is like Hervé Tullet’s Press Here, but with an adorable skiing bunny! Tilt, turn, and shake the book to help Bunny make it down the hill and avoid dangerous obstacles. Lots o’ fun!"
 
 

 Karen Beattie

Ont-Pot Pasta
by Sabrina Fauda-Role
"This cookbook is the answer to every exhausted-at-the-end-of-the-day person’s dreams. Find 1 pot. Put the simple and few ingredients into the pot. Cook this pot over a medium heat for 15 minutes. Let pot rest off the heat for 5 minutes. Pour yourself a glass of wine and dinner is ready. No kidding! The design is fresh and hip with each recipe shown in arty before and after full colour photos. The yummy solution for workweek meals."
 
Other-Wordly
by Yee-Lum Mak, illustrated by Kelsey Garrity-Riley
"Here’s this season’s gift book for word nerds: an illustrated collection of words and definitions for unexpected things — like the sunlight that filters thru’ the leaves of trees. The illustrations are done in a dreamy palette of soft pinks, greys and blues, giving this wee gem a wistful vibe."
 
 
Cheryl Fraser
 

The Travel Book
by Lonely Planet
"With 800 new images in this third edition, The Travel Book features images from every country in the world. A perfect gift for anyone curious about the world. The interior pictures are compelling and the updated cover demands that you pick up this beautiful edition."
 
Busy Builders: Airport
by Timothy Knapman, illustrated by Carles Ballesteros
"A book, and airport set and model pieces — what a great way to start a trip, or just learn about busy airports. Little travelers can read all they need to know about airports on the plane, and have a total entertainment package when they arrive at their destination."
 
 

Ali Hewitt

A Beauty Collected
by Rachel Garahan
"Graceful and meditative, the abecedarium of photos for adults encourages all of us to find the beauty in the natural world."
 
Muddle & Mo
by Nikki Slade Robinson 
"This charmingly illustrated picture book shows what happens when you realize that your friend isn’t the same as you. Fortunately Muddle and Mo learn that even though one is a duck, and the other a goat, they can still be best friends!"
 
 
Karen Stacey
 

The Other Paris (new in trade paper)
by Luc Sante
"The Other Paris is a cross between Brassai’s and Bresson’s world, albeit a slightly grittier side of Parisian life; the cabarets, the bohemian world, the darker side of the city of lights. With vivid narration, impeccable research and an aesthete’s taste for anecdotes, Luc Sante’s newest collection will intrigue. Highly recommended for all history and culture collections."
 
How Cities Work
by Lonely Planet
"For fans of David McAuley’s How Things Work, another fabulous book for kids (ages 6+) to discover the inner workings of their world!"
 
 
Scott Fraser
 

The African Svelte
by Daniel Menaker, illustrated by Roz Chast
"An illustrated collection of malapropisms, eggcorns, and unintentional wit, sure to please all lovers of language."
 
Apocalypse Bow Wow
by James Proimos
"Many dog parents wonder what their fur babies get up to when they’re not home. But what if there were no humans around at all? The dogs in Apocalypse Bow Wow are learning to live in a world without people. What will they do now that they’re the leaders of the pack?"
 

New Nonfiction for February

by Dan
Biography & Memoir + Essays / February 19, 2013

This is Running For Your Life

In her new essay collection This is Running For Your Life, out this month, Michelle Orange takes us from Beirut to Hawaii to her grandmother's retirement home in Canada in her quest to understand how people behave in a world increasingly mediated — for better and for worse — by images and interactivity. Described by Publishers Weekly as a "whip-smart, achingly funny collection," the book was reviewed by Michael Redhill (author of Consolation and the Inger Ash Wolfe novels) in this weekend's National Post

This is Running For Your Life [is] a brave, new, and sometimes thrillingly difficult collection of essays by Canadian author Michelle Orange... Orange is an acolyte of the eye — as is John Berger and Susan Sontag — and many of the attempts in this collection consider movies and images in the context of our consumption of these things in the Internet age. In the strongest of them, Orange worries the barrier between seeing and being seen; and between witness and participation.

Also out this month is James Lasdun's extradordinary Give Me Everything You Have, which chronicles the author's strange harrowing ordeal at the hands of a former student — a self-styled "verbal terrorist," who began trying, in her words, to "ruin him." 

Give Me Everything You Have: On Being Stalked

Maureen Corrigan recently discussed the book on NPR's Fresh Air:

Over the past week or so, I've mentioned James Lasdun's new book, Give Me Everything You Have to a bunch of colleagues; they've all heard about it already and they're all dying to read it. What Amy Chua's Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother was to parenting a couple of years ago, Lasdun's Give Me Everything You Have may well be to teaching: a controversial personal reflection on the professor-student relationship — except Lasdun, unlike Chua, really has no advice to offer; no certitude, nor help for pain. His memoir attests to the fact that in the confusing Age of the Internet, we are all as on a "darkling plain," at the mercy of assault by email and wiki rumor.

This is Running For Your Life and Give Me Everything You Have are in stores now. Discover more new nonfiction releases in this week's Titlewave email newsletter

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