Bernice is a collector—of items rescued from her thrift shop and memories of a husband who abandoned her years ago—until one day she decides to take her sister’s advice and downsize. “The Queen of Cans and Jars” is part of Michael Christie’s critically acclaimed short-story collection, The Beggar’s Garden.
The Beggar’s Garden follows a diverse group of characters, from a bank manager to a drug addict to a retired Samaritan, a web designer, and a car thief, as they drift through each other’s lives in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. Michael Christie’s darkly funny debut collection won the Vancouver Book Award; it was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and was a finalist for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize.
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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.