Most Anticipated Books of Fall 2012
It's August, and the buzzing has started already. Late summer sees the release of David Bergen's The Age of Hope, his follow-up to the award-winning The Matter with Morris. Former Ontario Attorney General Michael Bryant has written 28 Seconds, his account of the 2009 altercation that resulted in a cyclist's death. Y is the first novel by Marjorie Celona, a graduate of the Iowa Writers Workshop, the story of a girl who begins her life abandoned on the doorstep of the YMCA. Poet Lorna Crozier has written The Book of Marvels: A Compendium of Every Day Things, a series of prose meditations which, as Giller-winner Esi Edugyan writes, "raises the objects of everyday life into things of alien beauty." Detective novelist Louise Penny has released her latest Chief Inspector Gamache Novel, The Beautiful Mystery, about murder among monks at a remote monastery in Northern Quebec (to the soundtrack of Gregorian chants). Doug Saunders follows up his award-winning Arrival City with The Myth of the Muslim Tide. And Susan Swan's new novel is The Western Light, a return to the life of Mouse Bradford, heroine of Swan's 1993 novel The Wives of Bath.
With September comes The Selector of Souls by Shauna Singh Balwdin, her first novel since her Giller-nominated The Tiger's Claw. Swallow is the latest by Theanna Bischoff whose previous novel was nominated for both the 2009 Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book Award and the 2009 Re-Lit Award. CP Boyko follows up the acclaimed collection Blackouts with Psychology and Other Stories. Kin is the latest by well-loved East Coast author Lesley Crewe. We're intrigued by My Leaky Body: Tales from the Gurney by Julie Devaney, a memoir about a patient's stuggles within the health-care system. Embedded on the Homefront, edited by Joan Dixon and Barb Howard, is a collection of essays about war from an often unexamined angle. Emma Donoghue follows up her multi-award-winning Room with the story collection Astray. Acclaimed novelist Bill Gaston's latest is The World, the story of a man whose house burns down on the day he finally pays off his mortgage. Musician and radio personality Jian Ghomeshi makes his literary debut with the memoir 1982, an immigrant coming-of-age story with a David Bowie soundtrack.
No doubt, expectations are high that Rawi Hage's third novel Carnival will earn the awards and acclaim of his previous, De Niro's Game and Cockroach. Two-time Journey Prize nominee Fran Kimmel's first novel is The Shore Girl. Mark Kingwell's latest book is the essay collection Unruly Voices: Essays on Democracy, Civility and the Human Imagination. Now published in English translation by Wayne Grady, Marie Renee Lavoie's Mister Roger and Me won Quebec's Prix Archambault and won Radio-Canada's Battle of the Books 2010. Naomi K. Lewis' I Know Who You Remind Me Of is this year's winner of the Colophon Prize. Annabel Lyon follows up on her acclaimed The Golden Mean with sequel The Sweet Girl. Jeanette Lynes' latest collection of poetry is Archive of the Undressed, whose subject matter is said to range "from twirling tassels to dead playmates".
D.R. MacDonald, whose 2007 novel Lauchlin of The Bad Heart was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, releases Anna From Away, the story of a woman who escapes to Cape Breton to find complicated love and sexual betrayal. Sandra Martin's Working the Dead Beat is the memoir of an obit writer, interspersed with obituaries of great Canadian from the past decade. Pamela Mordecai's latest collection of poetry is Subversive Sonnets, which George Elliott Clarke has called "sweet, acerbic, scintillating, and sassy." Is This Your First War? by Maclean's senior writer Michael Petrou is an account of his work and other experiences reporting in the Middle East since 2001. Dora-winning playwright Anton Piatigorsky delivers The Iron Bridge, a collection of short stories imagining the inner-lives of the 20th century's most notorious tyrants.
Christine Pountney, whose first novel Last Chance Texaco was nominated for the Orange Prize in 2000, has written her third novel Sweet Jesus, about a road trip through the American south in the weeks before the 2012 American election. John Ralston Saul's novel Dark Diversions is the story of an international journalist who is perhaps too enmeshed in the the circles he's reporting from. The Stone Thrower by Jael Ealey Richardson is a journey through Black history, sports history, and the life of Richardson's father, former CFL quarterback Chuck Ealey. Hidden Lives: Coming Out on Mental Illness by Lenore Rowntree and Andrew Boden is a collection of essays by writers whose own experiences have been touched by mental health problems. Candace Savage's A Geography of Blood is a powerful reassessment of the history of the Canadian West. In her novel Braco, former peacekeeper Lesleyanne Ryan's tells a story which takes place over the five days following the fall of Srebrenica in 1995.
The latest poetry collection by the award-winning Maureen Scott Harris is Slow Curve Out. Cordelia Strube follows up her Giller-nominated novel Lemon with Milosz. We're looking forward to Sophie B. Watson's Cadillac Couches, about a late-nineties road-trip in a Volkswagen Beetle, destination: The Edmonton Folk Festival. Barry Webster's The Lava in My Bones is just your typical story of a geologist who eats rocks and his teenage sister who oozes honey through her pores. And philosopher, poet and essayist Jan Zwicky brings us The Book of Frog, which, according to Frog, is probably the best book ever written.
In October, Allison Baggio follows up her first novel Girl in Shades with a short story collection, In the Body. The Crimes of Hector Tomas is a new book by Ian Colford, whose first book was winner of the 2009 Margaret and John Savage First Book Award, and a finalist for the Re-Lit and Danuta Gleed Awards. Frank Davey's aka bp Nichol details the achievements of the poet from his literary work to Fraggle Rock. And since everybody's talking about sexy books, why not check out The Harem by Safia Fazlul, the story of a young Muslim woman who starts her own escort agency? Jeff Gailus' Little Black Lies "dissects the global war on truth that has come to define the battle for oil." Spencer Gordon's story collection Cosmo promises to be anything but ordinary, not least because it comes with a three-thousand word sentence in defense of Miley Cyrus passion.
And here's a premise: Beatriz Hausner's Enter the Raccoon is the latest in CanLit's love affair with inter-species romance, a collection of poems documenting the love between a woman and a raccoon. Whitetail Shooting Gallery is the latest by Giller-nominee Annette Lapointe. You Must Work Harder to Write Good Poetry by Donato Mancini is an irreverent study of Canadian poetry reviews since the 1960s. Speaking of the 1960s, Katherine Monk's latest book is Joni: The Creative Odyssey of Joni Mitchell. And Alice Munro, who never quits, is back with a new story collection, Dear Life.
Susan Musgrave's latest novel Given revisits the lives of her characters from Cargo of Orchids. Terry Reardon profiles the relationship of wartime leaders in Winston Churchill and Mackenzie King: So Similar, So Different. Corey Redekop's latest novel Husk is the story of a struggling actor turned zombie who must survive his death without falling apart. With Blackbirds, award-winning detective novelist Garry Ryan turns his hand to historical fiction. And Linda Svendson's satire Sussex Drive imagines the private lives behind the Canadian government's 2008 prorougement.