Anne of Green Gables – Lucy Maud Montgomery

“People laugh at me because I use big words. But if you have big ideas, you have to use big words to express them, haven’t you?” For over a century, the red-haired heroine of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables (1908), Anne (“with an e”) Shirley, has stolen the hearts of readers across Canada…

Poems from Guantánamo: The Detainees Speak – Edited by Mark Falkoff

What kind of spring is this, / Where there are no flowers and / The air is filled with a miserable smell? – Shaikh Abdurraheem Muslim Dost The above poem was etched into a styrofoam cup and passed between detainees in the infamous Guantánamo Bay detention camp. It is included alongside twenty-one other poems in…

Update: Roald Dahl Episode in the Works!

Dreamers, wishers, tricksters, and magic-makers rejoice! I am currently working on a new episode featuring the work of beloved children’s author Roald Dahl. Our twenty-seventh reader will share her thoughts on her favourite Dahl novel, her doctoral studies into the role of food within his work, and much more! This glorious episode will be posted…

Mary Poppins – P.L. Travers

On a rainy afternoon our twelfth reader and I took a stroll around a neighbourhood readying itself for Halloween and spoke about Mary Poppins (1934), the first installment in P.L. Travers’ immensely popular series. Our reader fell in love with the story as a child and had plenty to say about its impact on her…

A Complicated Kindness – Miriam Toews

Our second reader selected the novel A Complicated Kindness (2004) by celebrated Canadian author Miriam Toews. We spoke about teenage reading, the author’s deft treatment of emotional trauma, and the profound empathy found in reading the right book at the right time. Our reader (a very talented writer) also emphasized the importance of reading in…

A Bird in the House – Margaret Laurence

Ah, the profound satisfaction of picking up the right book at the right time. The subject of this first post is the novel A Bird in the House (1970) by beloved Canadian author Margaret Laurence. This series of short stories chronicles a writer’s recollection of her childhood in the small fictional town of Manawaka, Manitoba….