Tag Archives: fiction

Vaughan Loves Reading

In honour of Canada 150, we’re rounding out the year with a celebration of Canadian literature. On November 25th, the Vaughan Public Libraries is excited to be hosting acclaimed Canadian author Heather O’Neill as part of our Vaughan Loves Reading series. You might recognize O’Neill’s name from her multiple Scotiabank Giller Prize nominations, or her inclusion on Indigo’s Best Books of 2017 list, with The Lonely Hearts Hotel coming in at number four.

I recently had the opportunity to read O’Neill’s newest novel, and it didn’t disappoint. Like her past works, The Lonely Hearts Hotel isn’t always an easy read. There’s abuse, addiction, questionable sexual encounters—but there’s also love, whimsy, and above all, enduring optimism. It’s a story of love flourishing in the seedy underworld of 1930s Montreal.

the lonely hearts hotel book coverAlthough the book is about both Rose and Pierrot, it’s Rose who is the heart of the story. She is a character just buzzing with energy—you half expect her to somersault off the page into your living room as part of one of her acts. Pierrot is less dynamic than Rose, but he’s affable enough to charm his own way around Montreal. O’Neill creates characters who do terrible things without ever losing their innocence, and so you’re always rooting for them to make it through whatever predicament they’ve gotten themselves into. O’Neill’s historic Montreal is alive as well, the chill of a Canadian winter almost tangible through the writing. The story will fully transport you to another time in our country’s history.

If you’re a fan of literature, or want to support the Canadian literary community, come check out Vaughan Loves Reading at the Bathurst Clark Library on Saturday November 25th, from 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm. Heather O’Neill will be giving a talk on her experience as a Canadian writer, and we’ll also be unveiling an anthology curated by local authors titled Voices of Vaughan. We’ll also be serving wine and cheese! So come have a drink, and mingle with the local literary community.

To attend Vaughan Loves Reading, please register on Eventbrite. This event is 19+.

Image result for canada 150 logo

Alex’s Picks – Psychological Thrillers

Web of AngelsIdenticalShutter IslandBefore I Go to SleepMisery

While I am all about the Chick Lit genre, every now and then I enjoy reading a book that makes my hair stand on end and keeps me at the edge of my seat. If you are one for Psychological Thrillers, here are my top picks:

Web of Angels by Lilian Nattel: A woman with Dissociative Identity Disorder looks for answers behind the suicide of a pregnant teenage girl, and what may be happening to her surviving younger sister.

Identical by Ellen Hopkins: An “All-American family” with a deep, dark secret.

Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane: A U.S Marshall tasked with capturing an escaped convict ends up questioning his own sanity.

Before I Go To Sleep by S.J Watson: A woman with amnesia wakes up every morning unable to remember her past. Leaving herself clues, she slowly pieces together her life and starts to doubt the people closest to her.

Misery by Stephen King: A crazed fan saves the life of her favourite author, then holds him captive.

Amerika and The Miner

Franz KafkaGiven the sort of novels I generally go for, it will probably come as a bit of a surprise that this is the first Kafka novel I have ever finished. And given that I’ve never read Kafka before, my statement just now was based completely on the plot plot (i.e. plotting the shape of plots on a graph) of Kafka’s novels by Kurt Vonnegut (as seen in A Man Without a Country). To save you the work of tracking a copy down (though we do have it!), here’s how he described Kafka’s Metamorphosis:

A young man is rather unattractive and not very personable. He has disagreeable relatives and has had a lot of jobs with no chance of promotion. He doesn’t get paid enough to take his girl dancing or to go to the beer hall to have a beer with a friend. One morning he wakes up, it’s time to go to work again, and he has turned into a cockroach... It’s a pessimistic story.

Who wouldn’t want to read that?*

 

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