Most Anticipated: Our 2014 Fall Fiction Preview

We're having a hard time living in the moment right now, what with the Fall Fiction line-up as amazing as it is. There are books by big-names, exciting debuts, and so many books that are going to surprise, challenge and delight us. So many books to look forward to, and to help you figure out which ones should top your must-read list, we've rounded up the ones that sound fantastic. There is something here for every reader. And don't miss our non-fiction, poetry and kids' book previews, coming out over the course of this month. 

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Book Cover Ellen in Pieces

Angie Abdou's avid fans are excited about her third novel, Between (September), about foreign nannies and the complexity of modern family life. The Corpse With the Platinum Hair (October) is Cathy Ace's latest Cait Morgan mystery, in which the foodie criminologist encounters murder in Las Vegas. Ellen in Pieces (August) announces the return of Caroline Adderson, following her 2010 acclaimed novel, The Sky is Falling. Stone Mattress is Margaret Atwood's first collection of short stories since 2006. And Sophrosyne (September) is the latest from Marianne Apostolides, a complicated mother/son story about desire and restraint in a digital age.

Book Cover Fourth Betrayal

Hopes are high for The Search for Heinrich Schlögel (September) by Martha Baillie, a curious polar time travel story which has already received a starred review in Publisher's Weekly. Jacqueline Baker's The Broken Hours (September) is a ghost story that fictionalizes the life of horror novelist H.P. Lovecraft. In further creepiness, we bring you suspense-master Linwood Barclay's new book, No Safe House (August), a sequel to No Time for Goodbye. Giller-winner David Bergen is back with Leaving Tomorrow (September), about a young man in a small town who longs for the world. In her new novel, Interference (August), Michelle Berry once again demonstrates that there is no such thing as an ordinary life. Readers are eagerly awaiting Dionne Brand's Love Enough (September), her first novel since What We All Long For. And mystery author Bruce Burrows' latest is The Fourth Betrayal, set on the Pacific Northwest coast, about a pipeline conspiracy that pits the everyday working man against the government.

Book Cover Chloe Sparrow

Kate Cayley, who has won acclaim for her plays and a YA novel, releases the short story collection, How You Were Born. Poet Wayde Compton's short fiction debut is The Outer Harbour (October). Lesley Crewe's new novel, Chloe Sparrow (August), is about a reality television producer whose home life becomes just as crazy as her job. Consumed (September) is a novel by filmmaker David Cronenberg, about two journalists who become embroiled in a global conspiracy. Michael Crummey follows up Galore with Sweetland (August), the story of a man who refuses to resettle from the remote Newfoundland island his family has called home for generations. Nick Cutter's The Deep (January) promises to be as twisted as his last book. 

Book Cover Rose's Run

Dawn Dumont's Rose's Run (October) is about a single mother on the outs with everybody on her Native reserve who becomes the world's least likely marathon runner. In Would I Lie to You? (October), Mary Lou Dickinson tells the story of a widow who meets her husband's son from a previous relationship, and is forced to confront her own secrets. Loren Edizel, whose novel Adrift was nominated for a ReLit Award in 2012, returns with Confessions: A Book of Tales, a collection of stories about why we keep secrets and what makes us tell. 

Book Cover Between Clay and Dust

The Umbrella Mender (September) is journalist Christine Fischer Guy's debut, a novel about a young nurse in 1950s' Moose Factory working to stem the tide of tuberculosis at the local hospital, and finding herself increasingly drawn to the wilderness around her. Between Clay and Dust, by Canadian-Pakistani writer Musharraf Ali Farooqi, is published in Canada for the first time in September; it was nominated for the Man Asian Literary Prize in 2012. " In the woods outside Overdeere, Ontario, there are trees that speak, a village that doesn't appear on any map, and a hill that opens wide, entrapping unwary travellers"—see? Just try not to be intrigued by We All Go Down Together (August), the latest by Gemma Files. Barbara Fradkin's latest Inspector Green mystery is None So Blind, (October). Elyse Friedman's new novel is The Answer to Everything (August), about a down-and-out artist who starts a roaringly successful New Age cult. 

Book Cover Sons and Fathers

Journalist Daniel Goodwin's first book is Sons and Fathers (September), a story of men's lives set against the backdrop of national politics, journalism, and spin. In Cantata (September), Clare Goulet uses the musical form's structure to weave together story lines from a young woman who discovers she lost her twin sister to drowning, to Virginia Woolf, to Rabbi Ernest Klein with his history shrouded by WW II and his Comprehensive Etymological Dictionary of the English Language. Lori Hahnel, a veteran of Calgary's punk scene, tells the story of a jazz grandmother and her punk granddaughter in After You've Gone (October), showing how each one struggled with her choices and lifestyle 50 years apart. 

Boy Lost in Wild (September) is the first short fiction collection by Brenda Hasiuk, after two well-acclaimed novels. Lee Henderson follows up his award-winning The Man Game with The Road Narrows As You Go (September), about Charles Schultz-obsessed aspiring comic-marker Wendy Ashbubble, set against a 1980s backdrop. In My October (September), Clare Holden Rothman tells the story of a French-English family in Montreal during the early 2000s, about the power of language and the weight of history. In her second novel, The World Before Us (September), Aislinn Hunter's archivist character delves into history to find the meaning of a tragedy in her life from decades ago. And award-winner Nancy Huston's latest is Black Dance (September), a story delivered from a famous screenwriter's death-bed. 

Book Cover Parallel Rivers

Frances Itani's new novel is Tell (August), set in the aftermath of WW1. Short story writer Sean Johnston's We Don't Listen to Them (October) is described as "a series of puzzling and engaging fictions". Acclaimed writer Michael Kenyon, who won the ReLit Award in 2010, releases Parallel Rivers (October), stories that are informed by German, French, Italian, and Japanese cinema of the 70s. The Afterlife of Stars (August) is a novel set against the Hungarian Revolution, written by Joseph Kertes whose previous works have won the Stephen Leacock Award and a Canadian Jewish Book Award. Julia Leggett's first book is Gone South and Other Ways to Disappear (October), a collection of stories that focus on women's relationships with their bodies, their lovers, their female friends and their health. Ann-Marie Macdonald's new novel is Adult Onset (September), an engrossing drama about motherhood and the dark side of family life, set to join her previous books, Fall On Your Knees and The Way the Crow Flies, as contemporary classics. Tinker and Blue (September) by Frank Macdonald is a Cape Bretoners in Haight-Ashbury story. Janice MacDonald's The Roar of the Crowd (July) is her latest Randy Craig mystery. 

Book Cover Wiseman's Wager

Celebrated writer Dave Margoshes' latest novel is Wiseman’s Wager (September), a meditation on aging, family ties, faith, and the liquid concept of the truth. Elaine McCluskey is back with another collection of gritty, funny tales with Hello Sweetheart (September). Debut novel Stony Point (October) by S. Noël McKay is about a brave woman on a mission in the 1900s' wild west. Wendy McGrath follows the story of her previous book, Santa Rosa, into North East (October), about the dynamics of working class family life in 1960s' Edmonton. Debut novelist Laurence Miall's Blind Spot (September) is about a young man who returns home for his parents' funeral and remains troublingly detached from grief, embarking on an affair with a neighbour and discovering that his mother had secrets of her own. Carafola (October) by Christine Miscione explores the limits of where the narrator ends and her mental illness begins. Celebrated Newfoundland writer Trudy Morgan-Cole's latest novel is A Sudden Sun (September), about a mother and daughter at the turn of the last century. And Elise Moser has edited Salut King Kong (October), a collection of English Quebec writing. 

Book Cover The Pull of the Moon

Julie Paul's second short story collection is The Pull of the Moon (September), in which characters discover shocking truths about the people they thought they knew best. Molly Peacock follows up her acclaimed biography, The Paper Garden, with Alphabetique: 26 Characteristic Fictions (November), a magical short story for each letter of the alphabet. Alisha Piercy, who won the bp nichol Chapbook Poetry Award in 2010, marks her fiction debut with Bunny and Shark (October), about an ex-Playboy bunny who seduces young men in secret and has her foot bitten off by a shark. Ursula Pflug's Motion Sickness (August) is a "flash novel" consisting of 55 short chapters, each one accompanied by a scratchboard illustration by S.K. Dyment, about reproductive freedom, social justice and the mores of a creative life. What I Want to Tell Goes Like This (September) is the debut story collection by poet Matt Rader. Eliza Robertson's Wallflowers (August) is much anticipated by any reader who has encountered Roberston's work already (and that's a lot of readers—in 2013, she won the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and was a finalist for the Journey Prize and the CBC Short Story Prize). 

Abattoir Blues (October) is Peter Robinson's 22nd book in his bestselling Inspector Banks series. Chelsea Rooney's debut novel is Pedal (October), in which a young psych student's challenging theories of pedophilia and her own complicated past conspire to make her question everything she believes in. With The Glass House, David Rotenberg completes his Junction Chronicles trilogy. In Garry Ryan's latest, Glycerine (October), his Detective Lane has been promoted at head of Calgary's Major Crimes Unit and must foil a terrorist attack with just days to go before the Calgary Stampede. Mark Sampson's Sad Peninsula (September) connects the experiences of a young Canadian man teaching English in Korea with the traumatic history of Korea's "Comfort Women". Richard Scarbook's The Indifference League (September) is a superheroes tale for the Millennial set: meet The Statistician, Time Bomb, Hippie Avenger, SuperKen, SuperBarbie, Miss Demeanour, Mr. Nice Guy, Psycho Superstar, The Drifter, and The Stunner.

Book Cover Station Eleven

In By the Book (September), Diane Schoemperlen has created a sequel to her Governor-General's Award-winning Forms of Devotion with collages of words and pictures. She of the Mountains (September) by Vivek Shraya and Raymond Biesinger is a contemporary illustrated queer love story interwoven with a remaining of Hindu mythology. Readers are already talking about Chez l’arabe (August) by Mireille Silcoff, a collection of linked short stories about a character with chronic illness. Quartet for the End of Time (September) is Johanna Skibsrud's first novel since her Scotiabank-Giller-winning The Sentimentalists, a story of American WW1 veterans marching on Washington during the Great Depression. Carrie Snyder's Girl Runner will be published in September, and in countries around the world in 2015; it's a novel of history and intrigue, about a former Olympic athlete reflecting on her life at the age of 104. Emily St John Mandel's fourth novel is Station Eleven (September), the story of a theatre troop travelling a post-apocalyptic wasteland. 

Book Cover Mr Jones

Acclaimed writer Fred Stenson's latest novel is Who By Fire (September), about a family whose future is devastated by the arrival of a sour gas plant on the border of their Alberta farmland during the 1960s. Margaret Sweatman, whose novels have been awarded the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize, the Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction, the Sunburst Award for Canadian Literature of the Fantastic and more, releases Mr. Jones (September), set against the Red Scares of the 1950s—"a shattering exploration of a past where world governments threaten annihilation while training housewives in the proper techniques for sweeping up radioactive dust." Shawn Syms' debut collection is Nothing Looks Familiar (September), sharp-eyed tales about outsiders, non-conformists, and iconoclasts.

Whatever Lola Wants (September), by award-winner George Szanto, is a novel about three families' lives from the perspective of a man who sits on a cloud above Mount Washington, watching the earth. The barker in Barker (September) by Wayne Tefs (whose previous novels have been awarded the Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction and the McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award) is a carnival barker in the circus on the prairies during the 1930s. The stories in H. Nigel Thomas' collection, When the Bottom Falls Out (September), are set in Montreal and the Caribbean and are about the consequences of decisions great and small. 

Book Cover The OPening Sky

Of Joan Thomas' latest novel, The Opening Sky (September), about an ordinary family forced to confront tragedy in their past, Alissa York writes, "In rich, meticulously woven prose, Joan Thomas confronts the painful paradoxes at the heart of a family, and reports back on both the darkness and the light." Kim Thúy follows up her GG and Giller success with Mãn (August), which was a #1 bestseller when it was first published in Quebec. Crossing the City (October) is the second novel in Michel Tremblay's Crossing series, translated by Sheila Fischman. Deborah Jane Tunney's The View From the Lane (September), a collection of linked short stories about a woman whose life (so far) spans the second half of the 20th century, has been called "the product of a unique creative vision" by Isabel Huggan. 

LAst of the Independents

Non-fiction sensation John Vaillant's debut novel is The Jaguar’s Children (January), a novel that weaves ancient legends of Mexico with the dangerous future of biotechnology. Will Starling (September) by Ian Weir is a rollicking mystery set in early 19th century London. Russell Wangersky's new novel, Walt, is a dark thriller about a grocery store cleaner who collects shoppers' abandoned shopping lists and whose answers about his wife's disappearance have failed to satisfy police. Two-time Governor-General's Award winner Rudy Wiebe is back with a new novel, Come Back (September), about a grieving man whose life is thrown into further turmoil when he seems to spy from a distance his eldest son who'd killed himself 25 years before. Last of the Independents (August) by Sam Wiebe is a hardboiled detective novel, 2012 winner of the Arthur Ellis Award for Best Unpublished Novel. And Kathleen Winter follows up Annabel with a new collection of short fiction, The Freedom in American Songs (September).

August 5, 2014
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