27 Canadian books coming out in April we can't wait to read

A new month means new books! Here are some of April's most anticipated Canadian titles.

A new month means new books! Here are some of the most anticipated Canadian titles of April. 

When I Listen to Silence by Jean E. Pendziwol, illustrated by Carmen Mok

When I Listen to Silence is a picture book by Jean E. Pendziwol, illustrated by Carmen Mok. (Groundwood Books)

When I Listen to Silence is a picture book about the power of silence when navigating your world. A girl looks out her window and discovers a space with breathing trees, dancing bears and a smoky dragon. It takes a bit of imagination and a dash of silence to save the day. 

When I Listen to Silence is for ages 3 to 6.

When you can read it: April 1, 2022

Jean E. Pendziwol is an author from Ontario. She is the author of the novel The Lightkeeper's Daughters and the children's books Once Upon a Northern NightMe and You and the Red Canoe and The Red Sash.

Carmen Mok is an illustrator. She has illustrated numerous books, including Ride the Big Machines in Winter: Waiting for Sophie by Sarah Ellis and Look at Me Now by Carol McDougall and Shanda LaRamee-Jones.

Mother Muse by Lorna Goodison

Mother Muse is a book by Lorna Goodison. (Véhicule Press, Hugh Wright)

In her first poetry collection in over nine years, Lorna Goodison highlights two "mothers" in Jamaican music in Mother Muse. Sister Mary Ignatius, who nurtured many of Jamaica's most gifted musicians, and dancer Anita "Margarita" Mahfood are the figures at the centre of this collection.

When you can read it: April 1, 2022

Lorna Goodison is one of Canada's most renowned writers. She was Jamaica's poet laureate from 2017 to 2020. Over the past 40 years, Goodison has written 14 books of poetry, including Collected Poems, and an award-winning memoir From Harvey River, which won the 2008 B.C. National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction and was a finalist for both the Trillium Book Award and the Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction. She was awarded the 2019 Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry for her body of work.

Grappling Hook by Sarah Yi-Mei Tsiang

Grappling Hook is a poetry collection by Sarah Yi-Mei Tsiang. (Palimpsest Press)

In Grappling Hook, Sarah Yi-Mei Tsiang explores identity, desire and the everyday struggles of motherhood. From the joys and perils of marriage to the evolving fight for social justice in a world divided by inequity, the poetry collection is dedicated to those making meaningful change in unprecedented times.

When you can read it: April 1, 2022

Sarah Yi-Mei Tsiang is a poet and children's book author. Her poetry collections include Sweet Devilry, which won the 2012 Gerald Lampert award, and Status Update, which was nominated for the Pat Lowther Award. Tsiang was shortlisted for the 2019 CBC Poetry Prize.

The Quiet in Me by Patrick Lane

The Quiet in Me is a book by Patrick Lane. (Harbour Publishing, Chris Hancock Donaldson)

In this final poetry collection, Patrick Lane contemplates the quiet of living in a body amongst so many other bodies. From the trout in the lake to geese arriving with the wind and a raccoon fishing in a river, Lane reveals a web of life filled with beauty and pain. 

When you can read it: April 2, 2022

Patrick Lane was an award-winning poet and novelist. He was the author of several books of poetry, along with works of fiction and nonfiction. Lane won many awards including the Governor General's Literary Award for Poetry, the Canadian Authors Association Award and three National Magazine Awards. In 2014, he was made an officer of the Order of Canada. Lane died at the age of 79 in March 2019.

Canadian poet Lorna Crozier was never much of a gardener — she left that work to her husband, writer Patrick Lane, until his death in 2019. But from a young age, she recognized the garden as a deeply important place from which to contemplate our biggest questions, including questions about life, death and loss. As Canadians once again settle into a spring spent at home, Crozier reflects on what Lane taught her about what a garden can be, and why we should all be digging our hands into the earth right now.

Rave by Jessica Campbell 

Rave is a comic book by Jessica Campbell. (Drawn & Quarterly)

This graphic novel follows a 15-year-old girl named Lauren, who is a faithful member of an evangelical church. After her devout parents banish evolution textbooks from the house, Lauren goes to study and sleeps over at her classmate Mariah's house. The evening develops into something Lauren never expected, and she's left to sort out a lifetime's worth of internalized homophobia and Christian guilt.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Jessica Campbell is an artist, originally from Victoria, whose work has been exhibited across the U.S. and Canada. Her previous books include Hot or Not: 20th Century Male Artists and XTC69.

Heady Bloom by Andrew Faulkner

Heady Bloom is by Andrew Faulkner (Coach House Books, Tiffany Pope)

Andrew Faulkner reflects on his experience suffering from an unending, low-grade headache that can only be resolved by Advil. Heady Bloom is a meditation on dealing with pain, struggle and the uncertainty of life. The poetry collection grapples with what it means to overcome a condition, when living is part of the condition itself.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Andrew Faulkner is a Canadian author based in Picton, Ont. His other books include Need Machine, which won a 2014 Bookie Award in Canadian poetry, and several chapbooks.

The Not-So-Uniform Life of Holly-Mei by Christina Matula

The Not-So-Uniform Life of Holly-Mei is a book by Christina Matula. (Inkyard Press)

The Not-So-Uniform Life of Holly-Mei is a middle-grade book about Holly-Mei Jones, a young girl from Toronto who is moving to Hong Kong when her mother gets a new job there. But moving means a new life — and leaving the old one behind. It takes determination and a positive attitude for Holly-Mei to adjust to her new world.

The Not-So-Uniform Life of Holly-Mei is for ages 8 to 12.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Christina Matula is an author raised in Ottawa. She has an MFA in creative writing from the University of Hong Kong and now lives in Finland with her husband, two children and puppy.

The Day-Breakers by Michael Fraser

The Day-Breakers is a book by Michael Fraser. (Biblioasis)

The Day-Breakers is an homage to the sacrifice of the Black Canadian soldiers who fought for the Union during the American Civil War. The poetry collection captures their voices and the era in which they lived, providing a new perspective on Black history.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Michael Fraser is an award-winning poet and writer. He has been published in several anthologies and his books include To Greet Yourself Arriving and The Serenity of Stone. His poem African Canadian in Union Blue won the 2016 CBC Poetry Prize

Fugue with Bedbug by Anne-Marie Turza

Fugue with Bedbug is a book by Anne-Marie Turza. (House of Anansi Press)

In her second poetry collection, Anne-Marie Turza uses the fugue form to weave a series of poems about time and mortality. It is part musical reference, part portraiture, part essay and a musical score. 

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Anne-Marie Turza is a poet and author who lives on Vancouver Island. Her other poetry collection, The Quiet, was a finalist for both the Gerald Lampert Memorial and Bronwen Wallace awards.

Bluebird by Genevieve Graham

Bluebird is an historical fiction novel by Genevieve Graham. (Simon & Schuster, Nicola Davison)

Bluebird is a novel that takes place during the First World War and tells the story of a young nurse named Adele who forms a strong bond with Jeremiah, a wounded soldier under her care. Jeremiah returns to the front — but when the war is over, the two cross paths in their hometown of Windsor, Ont., and see it as a second chance. Prohibition brings new danger to the city and it threatens to tear them apart.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Graham is a bestselling writer from Nova Scotia who has written several novels that highlight Canadian history. Her other books include At the Mountain's EdgeLetters Across the SeaCome From Away and The Forgotten Home Child.

Canadian writers Andrew Furey and Genevieve Graham reveal their touchstone books.

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

Composite image with two panels. On the left: Woman in grey shirt with short hair in front of black backdrop. On the right: illustrated book cover of grass and a hill at night with the moon just above the hill. White text overlaid.
Sea of Tranquility is by Emily St. John Mandel. (Sarah Shatz, HarperCollins Canada)

From Vancouver Island in 1912 to a colony on the moon 500 years later, Sea of Tranquility is a novel about time travel and metaphysics. 

When detective Gaspery-Jacques Roberts is hired to investigate an anomaly in the North American wilderness, he uncovers a series of lives upended — from an exiled son driven mad by beauty and mystery in a Canadian forest to a writer living in a colony on the moon as a pandemic ravages Earth. Through his work, Gaspery has the chance to do something extraordinary that will disrupt the timeline of the universe.

Sea of Tranquility unfurls a story about humanity across centuries and space.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Emily St. John Mandel is a bestselling author currently based in New York. Her other novels include The Glass Hotelwhich was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and selected by President Barack Obama as a favourite book of 2020; and Station Elevena bestseller adapted for HBO and a finalist for a National Book Award and the PEN/Faulkner Award.

Reading the description of the new HBO Max miniseries Station Eleven feels a bit eerie. The story is set in the future after a deadly flu pandemic has wiped out 99.9 per cent of the world’s population — and yet the post-apocalyptic series has somehow become comfort viewing for many in the era of COVID-19. Tom Power caught up with Canadian author Emily St. John Mandel, who wrote the novel the series was based on.

Sari, Not Sari by Sonya Singh

Sari, Not Sari is a book by Sonya Singh. (Simon & Schuster Canada)

Sari, Not Sari is a romcom novel. Manny Dogra is the CEO of a highly successful company that helps people manage their breakups. She's planning her wedding to a handsome architect, while in the midst of grieving the deaths of her parents. Her parents, who were both born in India, wanted Manny to become an "All-American girl," so that's what she did. Knowing next to nothing about her South Asian heritage, Manny meets an irritating client who agrees to give her a crash course in being Indian at his brother's wedding.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Sonya Singh is a writer, producer and former entertainment reporter. Sari, Not Sari is her first novel. Singh lives in Toronto.

Be a Triangle by Lilly Singh

Be a Triangle is a book by Lilly Singh. (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images, Doubleday Canada)

In this nonfiction book, Canadian actor, author and creator Lilly Singh explores how to create inner peace in the face of adversity. From Singh's personal struggles with identity, success and self-doubt, she teaches readers to "unsubscribe" from cookie-cutter ideals.

Be a Triangle is an uplifting guide to befriending yourself.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Singh is an actor, writer and social media creator from Scarborough, Ont. She was the executive producer and host of NBC's A Little Late with Lilly Singh. Singh is the author of the bestselling book How To Be a Bawse. She lives in Los Angeles.

Know It All by James H. Marsh

Know It All is a book by James H. Marsh. (Durvile Publications/CBC)

In this work of nonfiction, James Marsh tells the story of his evolution from a troubled childhood to a long career in Canadian publishing that culminated in the creation of The Canadian Encyclopedia. Through friendships, curiosity, a passion for books and the insights of a psychiatrist, Marsh championed an inclusive view of Canada.

Know It All offers insights into the intricacies of Canadian identity, the profession of book editors, and is a first-hand story about the creation of The Canadian Encyclopedia. 

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Marsh is an editor, writer and the creator of The Canadian Encyclopedia. He was the editor of the Carleton Library Series, a series of scholarly works on Canadian history and social science. He is the co-author of New Beginnings, a textbook on the history of Canada.

The Book of Grief and Hamburgers by Stuart Ross

The Book of Grief and Hamburgers is a book by Stuart Ross. (ECW Press)

Written after the sudden death of his brother, Stuart Ross is left the last living member of his family. This hybrid book of memoir, essays and poetic meditation reflects on what it means to grieve the people one loves and how to go on living in the face of an enormous accumulation of loss. 

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Ross is a writer, editor and teacher. He is the author of several books of poetry, fiction and essays including You ExistPockets and A Sparrow Came Down Resplendent. Ross was the 2019 recipient of the prestigious Harbourfront Festival Prize. He lives in Cobourg, Ont. 

I Was the President's Mistress!! by Miguel Syjuco

I Was the President's Mistress!! is a book by Miguel Syjuco. (Rennell Salumbre, Hamish Hamilton)

Vita Nova, the Philippines' most famous movie star, shares her story for the first time ever in a tell-all memoir. The actress was caught up in a political typhoon after having an affair with the country's most powerful man. From drug wars to a government on the brink, Vita's sensational story is one of a complicated society. 

I Was the President's Mistress!! is a novel about love, politics, faith, history, memory and what we know as truth.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Miguel Syjuco is a Filipino Canadian writer. His debut novel, Ilustrado, was a New York Times Notable Book of 2010, and the winner of the Man Asian Literary Prize, the Hugh MacLennan Prize, the Palanca Award, and the Filipino Readers' Choice Award.

Quiet Night Think by Gillian Sze

Quiet Night Think is a book by Gillian Sze. (ECW Press, Nadia Zheng)

Composed of personal essays and poems, Gillian Sze reflects on her familial and artistic origins in Quiet Night Think. This collection takes its name from a direct translation of an eighth-century Chinese poem by Li Bai, the subject of the opening essay. As Sze moves between poetry and prose, mother and writer, she meditates on ideas of emergence and transformation.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Gillian Sze is a poet from Winnipeg. She is the author of multiple poetry collections, as well as the 2021 children's book The Night is Deep and Wide. Sze lives in Montreal.

My Ackee Tree by Suzanne Barr, with Suzanne Hancock

My Ackee Tree is a book by Suzanne Barr, pictured, written with Suzanne Hancock. (Samuel Engelking, Penguin Canada)

Suzanne Barr began her journey to become a chef when she was 30 years old. After her mother was diagnosed with cancer, Suzanne moved home to Florida to care for her, but she didn't know how to cook. 

My Ackee Tree tells the story of a woman who battles the stereotypes of being a Black female chef to become a culinary star. The memoir is a celebration of creativity, soul searching and motherhood.

When you can read it: April 5, 2022

Barr is a chef, restaurateur, social advocate and author. She was one of the judges on Food Network Canada's new series, Wall of Chefs, and has a passion for local community and food security. Barr lives in Toronto.

Suzanne Hancock is the Toronto-based host and producer of Sunday Night Dinner, a podcast about cooking, food and that last meal of the weekend. She received an MFA in creative writing from the University of Michigan.

Boys and Girls Screaming by Kern Carter

A composite image of a portrait of a Black man looking into the camera beside a white book cover with the words Boys and Girls Screaming.
Boys and Girls Screaming is a YA novel by Kern Carter. (DCB, Filena Arcia)

In the YA novel Boys and Girls Screaminga teen named Ever is coping with the sudden death of her father. Ever decides to form a support group called Boys and Girls Screaming for kids who have suffered trauma. But while the other students share their stories and find solace, Ever is driven deeper into depression and hits her breaking point. It's up to the group to set Ever onto a path of healing. 

Boys and Girls Screaming is for ages 14 and up.

When you can read it: April 9, 2022

Kern Carter is a Toronto author and freelance writer. He has written and self-published two books — the novella Thoughts of a Fractured Soul and the novel Beauty Scars. Kern also has writing credits in Forbes, the New York Times, Global Citizen, Elle Magazine and

So You Girls Remember That by Gaadgas Nora Bellis, with Jenny Nelson

So You Girls Remember That is a book by Gaadgas Nora Bellis, right, written with Jenny Nelson, left. (Harbour Publishing)

So You Girls Remember That is an oral history of a Haida Elder, Naanii Nora, who lived from 1902 to 1997. It offers a window into Nora's life and her family, from the young girl who sang all the time to the days she spent picking berries and canning. The book reflects on the larger story of Nora's times, depicting the changing political relationships between Canada and the Haida people. 

So You Girls Remember That contains the collected wisdoms, reflections and stories of Elder Naanii Nora.

When you can read it: April 9, 2022

Gaadgas Nora Bellis was a storyteller and elder of the Haida Nation who was born in 1902. Jenny Nelson compiled the book So You Girls Remember That.

An Unthinkable Thing by Nicole Lundrigan

An Unthinkable Thing is a book by Nicole Lundrigan. (Viking, AnnaLena Seemann)

In this thriller novel, preteen Tommie Ware's life is turned upside down after his aunt is murdered. Tommie is forced to return to his mother, who works as a live-in housekeeper for the wealthy Henneberry family. While his mother works around the clock, Tommie becomes enmeshed in the secrets and games of the Henneberrys and eventually, a cold-blooded murder.

When you can read it: April 12, 2022

Nicole Lundrigan is the author of eight novels including The SubstituteThe Widow Tree and Glass Boys. Her book Hideaway, was shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Award. Lundrigan lives in Toronto.

My Face in the Light by Martha Schabas

My Face in the Light is a book by Martha Schabas. (R. Schabas, Knopf Canada)

Justine has made acting the centre of her life since she was a teenager. After a disastrous audition and a chance encounter with a stranger, things shift and Justine toys with the idea of leaving behind the life she was expected to want. 

My Face in the Light is an exploration of truth and identity. It's the story of a young woman owning up to the lies she has grown to love and figuring out if she can still recognize herself when she finally lets them go. 

When you can read it: April 12, 2022

Martha Schabas is a novelist and critic based in Toronto. Her first novel, Various Positions, was shortlisted for an Evergreen Fiction Award. She was the Globe and Mail's dance critic from 2015 to 2020, where she also wrote about theatre and books.

Time Zone J by Julie Doucet 

Time Zone J is a comic by Julie Doucet. (Drawn & Quarterly)

In the graphic novel Time Zone JMontreal artist Julie Doucet draws from her old diary entries to chronicle a whirlwind love affair from her early 20s. After developing an intimate correspondence with a reader overseas — not unheard of in the 1980s, when comic artists often mailed their work and communicated with readers through letters — Doucet flies from Montreal to France to meet the soldier, who's on furlough for a few days. 

When you can read it: April 19, 2022

Julie Doucet began drawing and publishing mini comics in 1988, and was featured in the anthology Heck! Comic Art of the Late 1980s. She started her groundbreaking strip Dirty Plotte in the 1990s, becoming an underground heroine and winning the Harvey Award for best new talent. Her comics — part-dream, part-diary — have been published serially as well as in collected formats. She famously quit the male-dominated comics industry in the late 1990s to focus on her other artwork. Time Zone J is her first inked comic since that announcement.

Send Me Into the Woods Alone by Erin Pepler

Send Me Into the Woods Alone is a book by Erin Pepler. (Invisible Publishing)

Send Me Into the Woods Alone is an honest, heartfelt and funny collection of essays about the joys, struggles and complexities of motherhood. Written from the perspective of a tired and often anxious mother, the essays in this book discuss giving birth, lying to kids about the Tooth Fairy and the online culture that puts unattainable expectations on mothers. 

When you can read it: April 19, 2022

Erin Pepler is a freelance writer who lives near Toronto. Her work has appeared in Today's Parent, ParentsCanada, Scary Mommy, MoneySense and elsewhere. Send Me Into the Woods Alone is her first book. 

Watch Out for Her by Samantha M. Bailey

Watch Out for Her is a thriller by Samantha M. Bailey.
Watch Out for Her is a thriller by Samantha M. Bailey. (Dahlia Katz, Simon & Schuster)

Watch Out for Her is a novel about a young mother named Sarah who thinks her problems are solved when she hires a young babysitter, Holly, for her six-year-old son. Her son adores Holly and Holly adores Sarah. But when Sarah sees something that she can't unsee, she uproots her family to start over. Her past follows her to this new life, raising paranoid questions of who is watching Sarah now? And what do they want?

When you can read it: April 26, 2022

Samantha M. Bailey is a journalist and editor in Toronto. Her first thriller, Woman on the Edgewas released in 2019.

Samantha M Bailey on her psychological thriller Woman on the Edge.

Kiss the Red Stairs by Marsha Lederman

A book cover featuring a photo of a woman's face overlain by a torn paper. The author's photo, a smiling woman with straight blonde hair.
Kiss the Red Stairs is a book by Marsha Lederman. (McClelland & Stewart, Ben Nelms)

Kiss the Red Stairs is a memoir of survival, intergenerational trauma and discovery. Marsha Lederman delves into her parents' Holocaust stories in the wake of her own divorce, investigating how trauma moves through generations and how history has shaped her own life. 

When you can read it: April 26, 2022

Lederman is the Western Arts Correspondent for the Globe and Mail. She previously worked for CBC Radio. Born in Toronto, Lederman lives in Vancouver. 

Dr. Brian Goldman speaks with psychiatrist and neuroscientist Judson Brewer about his new book “Unwinding Anxiety: New science shows you how to break the cycles of worry and fear to heal your mind”. It’s just what the doctor ordered to start out the new year.

The Power of Teamwork by Dr. Brian Goldman

The Power of Teamwork is a book by Dr. Brian Goldman. (HarperCollins, CBC)

The Power of Teamwork is a nonfiction book that shows how a team approach to medicine can improve more than our healthcare systems. This new model can lead to better customer service, solidify the provision of social services to troubled youth, make professional sports teams perform better and even help women break the glass ceiling. 

When you can read it: April 26, 2022

Dr. Brian Goldman is an ER doctor and a bestselling author. He is the host of CBC Radio's White Coat, Black Art and the CBC podcast The Dose, which is about the latest in health news. Goldman lives in Toronto.

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