Longlisted for the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize
Brilliantly sure-footed, strikingly original, tender and funny, this collection of nine linked stories follows a diverse group of curiously interrelated characters—from bank manager to crackhead to retired Samaritan to web designer to car thief--as they drift through each others’ lives in Vancouver’s notorious Downtown Eastside.
These engrossing stories, gleefully free of moral judgment, are about people who are searching in the jagged margins of life -- for homes, drugs, love, forgiveness. Ranging from the tragically funny opening story “Emergency Contact” to the audacious, crack-fuelled rush of “Goodbye Porkpie Hat” to the deranged and thrilling extreme of “King Me,” The Beggar’s Garden is a powerful and affecting debut, written with an exceptional eye and ear and heart.
About the author
MICHAEL CHRISTIE received his MFA in creative writing at the University of British Columbia. Prior to this, he worked in a homeless shelter on Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside and provided outreach to the severely mentally ill. A former professional skateboarder, he is a senior writer for Color Magazine, an award-winning publication that celebrates skateboarding culture. Michael Christie lives in Thunder Bay, and is working on his next book, a novel.