Books

36 Canadian books coming out in October we can't wait to read

A new month means new books!

A new month means new books! Here are the Canadian releases coming out in October we can't wait to read!

The Cine Star Salon by Leah Ranada

The Cine Star Salon is a novel by Leah Ranada. (NeWest Press)

In The Cine Star Salon, Phillippine-born Vancouverite Sophia is grateful for two things, her hair salon and for her mild-mannered fiancé Adrian. She can't wait to get married and move away from her parents, who want their daughter to be more than just a beautician. One day, her estranged friend reaches out from Manila, desperate for Sophia to help save her auntie's Cine Star Salon, where she first wanted to become a salon owner and hairstylist. But Sophia worries that coming to her auntie's aid could reopen old wounds and threaten her future. 

When you can read it: Oct. 1, 2021

Leah Ranada was born in the Philippines and moved to Canada in 2006. She attended The Writer's Studio at Simon Fraser University in 2013. Her work has been published in On Spec, Room, Scarlet Leaf Review, and elsewhere. Ranada lives in New Westminster, B.C.

Dying for Attention by Susan MacLeod

Dying for Attention is a comic by Susan MacLeod. (Conundrum Press)

Dying for Attention is a graphic memoir by Susan MacLeod about nursing home care. When MacLeod accompanied her 90-year-old mother through long-term care, it was a nine-year journey navigating a very cold system. The book also includes tips for communicating with nursing homes as well as background research.

When you can read it: Oct. 1, 2021

MacLeod is an artist and writer. Her illustrations have been published by Kaiser Permanente, Halifax Magazine and the Globe and Mail. 

Pandemic Spotlight by Ian Hanomansing

Pandemic Spotlight: Canadian Doctors at the Front of the COVID-19 Fight is a book by Ian Hanomansing. (Douglas & McIntyre/CBC)

One of the most remarkable features of the COVID-19 pandemic are the previously low-profile doctors who took to the public stage with strength and compassion to lead Canada through the pandemic. They counteracted misinformation and gave the most up-to-date medical advice on avoiding infection. In Pandemic Spotlight, Ian Hanomansing profiles Canadian doctors, such as Dr. Bonnie Henry, Dr. Zain Chagla and Dr. Sumon Chakrabati, who stepped up to guide the nation through its worst medical crisis in a century.

When you can read it: Oct. 2, 2021

Hanomansing is a host and reporter who has been a journalist for more than 30 years. He currently co-hosts The National and is an interim host on CBC Radio's Cross Country Checkup.

Binge by Douglas Coupland

Binge is a short story collection by Douglas Coupland. (Random House Canada)

Binge contains 60 stories about the way we live and Douglas Coupland's existential worry about how we should be living, which is the very thing that made him an influential writer. Inspired by the way we write about ourselves and our experiences in online forums, Coupland creates characters we can all relate to. 

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Coupland is a writer, visual artist and designer who lives in Vancouver. He has authored 14 novels, two collections of short stories and eight nonfiction books. He's a recipient of the Lieutenant Governor's Award for Literary Excellence. His artwork has been exhibited in The Vancouver Art Gallery, The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art and The Royal Ontario Museum.

A Tale of Two Omars by Omar Sharif Jr.

A Tale of Two Omars is a book by Omar Sharif Jr. (Catapult Press, Thomas Synnamon)

Omar Sharif Jr.'s name always protected him wherever he went, until he made the difficult decision to come out in the pages of The Advocate. He knew his life would never be the same, but he didn't expect the backlash that followed. He endured bullying, illness, attempted suicide, becoming a victim of sex trafficking, death threats by the thousands, and never being able to return to a country he once called home. Drawing on the lessons he learned from both sides of his family, A Tale of Two Omars charts the course of an unconventional life, revealing in the process the struggles and successes of a public journey of self-acceptance and a life dedicated in service to others.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Sharif Jr. is an Egyptian Canadian actor and model who lives in the U.S. He is the grandson of actor Omar Sharif. He is widely considered to be the first openly gay person in the Arab world.

The Bjorkan Sagas by Harold Johnson

The Bjorkan Sagas is a novel by Harold Johnson. (Calvin Fehry, House of Anansi Press)

Myth, fantasy and history are merged in The Bjorkan Sagas, an epic saga of exploration and adventure. This trio of sagas follows three Bjorkans, led by Juha the storyteller, who leave their valley to discover what lies beyond its borders. They meet a devious story-trader, gun-toting aliens searching for heaven and Lilly, a medicine woman. Juha must protect his people from invaders who plan on stealing the valley's secrets, while Lilly travels across the universe to help Juha and the Bjorkans, who are facing their deadliest enemy yet.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Harold R. Johnson has written five works of fiction and five works of nonfiction, including Firewater: How Alcohol is Killing My People (and Yours), which was shortlisted for the Governor General's Literary Award for Nonfiction. He served in the Canadian Navy and was a Crown prosecutor. He lives in Saskatchewan.

An Embarrassment of Critch's by Mark Critch

An Embarrassment of Critch's is a book by Mark Critch. (Viking, Aaron McKenzie Fraser)

An Embarrassment of Critch's is the second memoir by Canadian comedian Mark Critch. It follows Critch's journey from Newfoundland to the national stage and back again. Critch's earliest acting gigs was in a Newfoundland tourist production. Since then, he's found more opportunities to take his show on the road. He revisits some of his career's biggest moments in this memoir, revealing all the things that have happened along the way.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Critch is a Canadian comedian. For 14 years, he has starred on CBC's flagship show, This Hour has 22 Minutes. He's the host of CBC's Halifax Comedy Festival and has written for and appeared in CBC's Just for Laughs series. He is also the author of the memoir Son of a Critch.

Off the Record by Peter Mansbridge

Off the Record is a book by Peter Mansbridge. (Simon & Schuster, CBC)

Peter Mansbridge is one of the most recognized faces and voices in Canadian news, and he's finally sharing his story in a new memoir. Off the Record chronicles his 50-year career, from hosting a local late night music program in Manitoba to becoming the chief correspondent and anchor of The National. He shares never-before-told stories from his career, including reporting on the fall of the Berlin Wall and the horror of 9/11, walking the beaches of Normandy and talking with Canadian prime ministers.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Mansbridge is the former chief correspondent for CBC News, anchor of The National, where he worked for 30 years and host of Mansbridge One on One. He is also the author of the Peter Mansbridge One on One: Favourite Conversations and the Stories Behind Them and co-author of Extraordinary Canadians: Stories from the Heart of Our Nation.

The Whisper on the Night Wind by Adam Shoalts

The Whisper on the Night Wind is a book by Adam Shoalts (Adam Shoalts, Allen Lane)

In the early 1900s, the isolated little settlement of Traverspine, a place you will not find on most maps, was the scene of an extraordinary haunting by large creatures none could identify. Strange tracks were found in the woods and cries were heard in the night. Sled dogs went missing and children reported being stalked by a terrifying grinning animal. As a result, families slept with their cabin doors barred and weapons by their bedsides. Explorer Adam Shoalts picks up the trail left by eye-witness accounts and sets off into the Labrador wild to investigate the tale. He chronicles what he finds in The Whisper on the Night Wind.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Shoalts has been called one of Canada's greatest living explorers. In 2018, was named an explorer-in-residence of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. He has written three other books, Alone Against the North, Beyond the Trees and A History of Canada in Ten Maps

The Apollo Murders by Chris Hadfield

The Apollo Murders is a novel by Chris Hadfield. (Random House Canada)

The Apollo Murders is a thriller about the Cold War and the space race between Russia and America. Three astronauts aboard Apollo 18 are miles away from home, on a top-secret mission to the Moon. As political stakes are stretched thin, Houston flight controller Kazimieras Zemeckis must do everything to keep the NASA crew together, while staying ahead of the Soviets. But not everyone on Apollo 18 is who they seem.

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

Chris Hadfield is one of the most accomplished astronauts in the world, serving as NASA's director of operations in Russia and commander of the International Space Station. He gained worldwide acclaim for his photographs and educational videos about life in space. His other books include An Astronaut's Guide to Life on EarthYou Are Here and The Darkest Dark are international bestsellers. 

The 500 Years of Indigenous Resistance by Gord Hill

The 500 Years of Indigenous Resistance is a comic by Gord Hill. (Gord Hill, Arsenal Pulp Press)

The 500 Years of Indigenous Resistance Comic Book is about the Indigenous resistance to the European colonization of the Americas throughout 500 years of history. It begins with the Spanish invasion under Christopher Columbus and ends with the Six Nations land reclamation in Ontario in 2006. The book documents the fighting spirit and ongoing resistance of Indigenous peoples with words and illustrations. 

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

Gord Hill is a member of the Kwakwaka'wakw nation on the Northwest Coast of B.C. He is also the author of The Anti-Capitalist Resistance Comic Book and The Antifa Comic Book.

Special Topics in Being Human by S. Bear Bergman, ​​illustrated by Saul Freedman-Lawson 

Special Topics in Being Human is a comic by S. Bear Bergman, ​​illustrated by Saul Freedman-Lawson. (Saul Freedman-Lawson, Arsenal Pulp Press)

Special Topics in Being Human is a queer and tender guide to things the author has learned the hard way about caring for people — including himself. The book offers Dad advice and Jewish bubbe wisdom, all filtered through a queer lens, to help readers navigate some of the complexities of life.

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

S. Bear Bergman is an author, educator and public speaker. He has documented his experience as a trans parent and writes the advice column Asking Bear. He is also the founder and publisher of the micropress Flamingo Rampant. 

Saul Freedman-Lawson is an illustrator, zine-maker and educator. He makes art about queerness, transness, Judaism and childhood. Special Topics in Being Human is his first full-length book.

State of Terror by Louise Penny & Hillary Clinton

State of Terror is a novel by Louise Penny, left, and Hillary Clinton, right. (Jean-Francois Berube, Simon & Schuster, Joe McNally)

State of Terror is a thriller co-written by Canadian writer Louise Penny and former U.S. secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton. The president of a newly sworn in administration has chosen Ellen Adams, a political enemy, as his secretary of state. It's a canny move on his part, as he's effectively silenced one of his harshest critics. As the new president addresses Congress for the first time, with the secretary in attendance, a young foreign service officer receives a baffling text — and a series of terrorist attacks that follows is revealed to involve the volatile politics of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran, the Russian mob and an American government weakened on the world stage. Now, it's up to Adams and her team to defeat it.

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

Penny is the author of the bestselling series of Chief Inspector Armand Gamache novels. She's won numerous prestigious literary awards focused on mystery fiction. In 2017, she received the Order of Canada for her contributions to Canadian culture.

Clinton served as the 67th U.S. secretary of state and was the first woman in United States history to become the presidential nominee of a major political party. She has been in public service for nearly four decades advocating for children and families as an attorney, first lady and senator. She is the author of seven previous books.

Chemical Valley by David Huebert

Chemical Valley is a short story collection by David Huebert. (Biblioasis, Nicola Davison)

Chemical Valley is a collection of stories that follow the rich emotional worlds of characters — ranging from city-dwelling doomsday preppers, nurses, dishwashers, professional hockey enforcers and refinery workers. Rather than shying away from urgent modern questions, this book grounds these anxieties in vivid and humorous intricacies of these characters' lives.

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

David Huebert's writing has won the CBC Short Story Prize, The Walrus Poetry Prize and was a finalist for the 2020 Writers' Trust McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize. He is also the author of the short story collection Peninsula Sinking. He lives in Halifax and teaches at The University of King's College.

The Light Streamed Beneath It by Shawn Hitchins

The Light Streamed Beneath It is a memoir by Shawn Hitchins. (Jen Squires Photography, ECW Press)

In his memoir The Light Streamed Beneath It, comedian and writer Shawn Hitchins writes about losing two great loves of his life, just five months apart, to sudden death. The book is an open examination of grief, as the comedian is forced to put the punchlines aside in order to confront the raw pain of death.

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

Shawn Hitchins is a Toronto-based comedian, author, media personality and actor. The Light Streamed Beneath It is his latest memoir, following his 2017 nonfiction book A Brief History of Oversharing. His one-man show Ginger Nation toured extensively before being filmed in concert and aired on television.

Over the Boards by Hayley Wickenheiser

Over the Boards is a book by Hayley Wickenheiser. (Viking, Ceilidh Price)

Hayley Wickenheiser is one of the greatest hockey players of all time. She's played at 13 world championships, six Olympics and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. She holds multiple university degrees and is a medical doctor, all while raising a child. In the memoir Over the Boards, Wickenheiser shares her story and reflects on what the game gave her. 

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

Wickenheiser has represented Canada at 13 world championships and made six Olympic appearances, bringing home four gold medals. She's been inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame, Hockey Hall of Fame and is the founder of Canadian Tire WickFest. She's currently the senior director of player development for the Toronto Maple Leafs and a medical doctor.

Persephone's Children by Rowan McCandless

Persephone's Children is a book by Rowan McCandless. (Dundurn Press)

Persephone's Children tells the story of Rowan McCandless escaping the stranglehold of a long-term abusive relationship and rediscovering her voice and identity. Through a series of thematically linked and inventive essays, including a contract, a crossword puzzle and a metafictional TV script, she explores the relationship between memory and trauma. 

When you can read it: Oct.12, 2021

McCandless is a writer from Winnipeg. She has won the Constance Rooke Creative Nonfiction Prize and has been longlisted for the Writers' Trust McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize. 

All the Quiet Places by Brian Thomas Isaac

All the Quiet Places is a novel by Brian Thomas Isaac. (Touchwood Editions)

In All the Quiet Places, it's 1956 and young Eddie Toma lives on the far edge of the Okanagan Indian Reserve with his mother and little brother. In the summer, he tags along with his mother, his nephew and her friends to farm in Washington state. After tragedy strikes, Eddie comes home grief-stricken, confused and lonely. As he grows up, his life is governed by the decisions of the adults around him. And every time things start to look up, circumstances beyond his control crash down around him — and the effects of guilt, grief and despair keep piling up, threatening everything Eddie has ever known or loved.

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

Brian Thomas Isaac was born on the Okanagan Indian Reserve, in south central B.C. He's worked in oil fields, as a bricklayer, and he had a short career riding bulls in local rodeos. As a lover of sports, he has coached minor hockey. All the Quiet Places is his first book.

The Vinyl Cafe Celebrates by Stuart McLean

The Vinyl Cafe Celebrates is a posthumous collection of stories by Stuart McLean. (CBC, Random House Canada)

The Vinyl Cafe Celebrates is a collection featuring never-before-published stories and 10 old favourites. From the Christmas classic Dave Cooks the Turkey and Morte d'Arthur, this collection is a celebration of the importance of love, community, kindness and the healing power of laughter. 

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

For more than two decades, Stuart McLean hosted the radio program Vinyl Cafe, which was an hour-long storytelling and variety show. It was broadcast on CBC Radio and syndicated to approximately 80 U.S. public radio stations. He died in 2017 at age 68.

Any Kind of Luck at All by Mary Fairhurst Breen

Any Kind of Luck at All is a book by Mary Fairhurst Breen. (Second Story Press, Maggie Knaus)

In the memoir Any Kind of Luck at All, Mary Fairhurst Breen details scenes from a life darkened by four generations of mental illness and addiction. Her sense of humour and willingness to practice "radical acceptance" help her cope with the chaos and lead a life full of friends, art and the joys of being a grandmother. 

When you can read it: Oct. 12, 2021

Breen is a writer and translator. She spent 30 years in the not-for-profit sector, managing small organizations with big social-change mandates. Any Kind of Luck at All is her first book.

The Blue Moth Motel by Olivia Robinson

The Blue Moth Motel is a novel by Olivia Robinson. (Breakwater Books, Scott Robinson)

The Blue Moth Motel is about Ingrid and Norah, sisters who grew up in a motel, raised by their mother and her partner. Years later in England, while studying to be a soloist, Ingrid loses her voice. She then hears from Norah, who's reviving a party that began during their childhood to celebrate the arrival of the mysterious and elusive blue moths. 

When you can read it: Oct. 15, 2021

Olivia Robinson is from Annapolis Valley, N.S., and currently lives in St. John's. Her work has appeared in Riddle Fence, Cargo Literary Magazine and the UPEI Arts Review. 

Petrozavodsk by Alison McCreesh

Petrozavodsk is a comic by Alison McCreesh. (Conundrum Press)

Petrozavodsk is about the time Alison McCreesh discovered a lump in her breast while on the Russian leg of a circumpolar journey. Concerned about navigating an unfamiliar healthcare system, she embarks on a new excursion — to find a doctor and a diagnosis in the town she was visiting. Petrozavodsk takes an intimate look at what it's like to be vulnerable in a foreign place. 

When you can read it: Oct. 15, 2021

McCreesh is an artist who currently lives in Yellowknife. She has travelled around the Arctic and sub-Arctic and the theme of contemporary day-to-day life in the North carries through her creative work.

The Collected Poetry of Carol Shields, edited by Nora Foster Stovel

The Collected Poetry of Carol Shields is a poetry collection. (Richard Lam, McGill-Queen's University Press)

The Collected Poetry of Carol Shields includes three previously published collections and over 80 unpublished poems from iconic Canadian American writer Carol Shields. The included works are from the early 1970s through to Shields's death in 2003. Editor Nora Foster Stovel provides detailed annotations of Shields' work.

When you can read it: Oct. 15, 2021

Shields was an American Canadian novelist, short story writer, essayist, playwright and poet. Best known for her fiction writing, Shields received both the Pulitzer Prize and the Governor General's Literary Award for fiction for her novel The Stone Diaries. Her other books include Unless, The Republic of Love and Jane Austen: A Life. She died in 2003 at the age of 68.

Stovel is an author, editor and professor emerita at the University of Alberta.

The Man Who Walked Through Walls by Obom 

The Man Who Walked Through Walls is a comic by Obom. (Conundrum Press)

The Man Who Walked Through Walls is Diane Obomsawin's graphic adaptation of Marcel Aymé's 1943 short story Le passe muraille. Dutilleul lives a quiet life until the night his power flickers on and off. Dutilleul discovers he's developed the ability to walk through walls. He visits the doctor, but doesn't quite follow the prescription and before long, he's in over his head.

When you can read it: Oct. 15, 2021

Diane Obomsawin was born in Montreal and spent the first 20 years of her life in France. After studying graphic design, she returned to Canada in 1983 and turned her attention to painting, comics and animation. She created the autobiographical film Here and There and has published two books.

Essential Ingredients by Carol Rose GoldenEagle

Essential Ingredients is a poetry collection by Carol Rose GoldenEagle. (Inanna Publications)

In Essential Ingredients, Carol Rose GoldenEagle recalls when Creator's blessings have truly been bestowed in a parent's shared life with their children. The poems in this collection examine hardship and struggle, triumph of spirit and joy, and serve as a reminder to all parents that childhood is fleeting. It is a celebration of parenthood.

When you can read it: Oct. 16, 2021

GoldenEagle is a Cree and Dene author and journalist from Saskatchewan. Her book Bearskin Diary was chosen as a national Aboriginal Literature Title for 2017. She is also the author of Hiraeth and Bone Black. GoldenEagle is the ninth poet laureate of Saskatchewan.

Hunting by Stars by Cherie Dimaline

Hunting by Stars is a follow-up to Cherie Dimaline's YA novel The Marrow Thieves. (cheriedimaline.com, Penguin Teen)

Hunting by Stars takes place in the world of The Marrow Thieves, a post-apocalyptic North America where only Indigenous people have the ability to dream. Residential schools are re-established to imprison Indigenous people, and search for the secrets to dreaming in their bones. Hunting by Stars picks up on 17-year-old French, who wakes up in a pitch-black room. In The Marrow ThievesFrench lost his family to the residential schools and found a new family to travel with, while dodging the "Recruiters."

Hunting by Stars is for ages 12 and up.

When you can read it: Oct. 19, 2021

Cherie Dimaline is a Métis author and editor whose award-winning fiction has been published and anthologized internationally. Her first book, Red Rooms, was published in 2007, and her novel The Girl Who Grew a Galaxy was released in 2013. In 2014, she was named the Emerging Artist of the Year at the Ontario Premier's Award for Excellence in the Arts, and became the first Aboriginal Writer in Residence for the Toronto Public Library. Her book A Gentle Habit was published in August 2016.

In 2017, The Marrow Thieves won the Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature — text and the Kirkus Prize for young readers' literature. It is currently being adapted for television.

The Marrow Thieves was defended by Jully Black on Canada Reads 2018.

Once a Bitcoin Miner by Ethan Lou

Once a Bitcoin Miner is a book by Ethan Lou. (ECW Press, Ke Yan)

Journalist Ethan Lou recounts his experiences with Bitcoin in Once a Bitcoin Miner. He started by investing in bitcoin in university, then wrote for Reuters, then tried his hand at mining the digital asset. He's met the likes of Gerald Cotten, CEO of QuadrigaCX, and a co-founder of Ethereum and hung out in North Korea with Virgil Griffith, the man arrested for teaching blockchain to the totalitarian state. This book is both a personal story of adventure and fortune, and a deep dive into all things bitcoin.

When you can read it: Oct. 19, 2021

Lou is a journalist and writer. He is also the author of Field Notes from a Pandemic: A Journey Through a World Suspended. He is a former Reuters and Toronto Star reporter and writes regularly in publications including the Washington Post, the Guardian and CBC. 

Shut Out by Bernie Saunders

Shut Out is a book by Bernie Saunders, pictured, written with Barry Meisel. (HarperCollins Canada/Lisa Young)

Bernie Saunders was one of the few Black hockey players in the NHL, and he shares his story for the first time in the memoir Shut Out. Saunders was talented at hockey, but because he was Black, he was obstructed at every turn and experienced taunting from opponents, spectators, coaches and even his own teammates. Despite this, he continued to play. He was signed by the Quebec Nordiques for two years, but spent most of his career playing collegiately at Western Michigan University and in minor leagues across North America. In the end, the racism became too much and he left hockey to work in the corporate sector. 

When you can read it: Oct. 19, 2021

Saunders is a retired professional hockey right winger who played two seasons in the National Hockey League for the Quebec Nordiques. 

Nothing But Blackened Teeth by Cassandra Khaw

Nothing But Blackened Teeth is a novel by Cassandra Khaw. (Raincoast Books, Cassandra Khaw)

In the thriller Nothing But Blackened Teeth, the foundations of an abandoned mansion rest on the bones of a bride — and the walls are packed with the remains of the girls sacrificed to keep the bride company. While it seems to be the perfect venue for thrill-seeking friends to celebrate a wedding, their night quickly becomes a nightmare as secrets are exposed and relationships are tested. And lurking in the shadows is the ghost bride who gets lonely down there in the dirt.

When you can read it: Oct. 19, 2021

Cassandra Khaw is an author, game writer and former scriptwriter at Ubisoft Montreal. Their first novella, Hammers on Bone, received a British Fantasy Award and was a finalist for the Locus Award.

The Spirits Up by Todd Babiak

The Spirits Up is a novel by Todd Babiak. (McClelland & Stewart, Cooper & O'Hara)

In The Spirits Up, Benedict is an inventor whose clean energy machine has just made him an overnight sensation and his family wealthy. His wife Karen and teenage daughters Charlotte and Poppy are proud of him. But Benedict doesn't realize that Karen is contemplating an affair, Charlotte has a chronic illness and the pressures of Poppy's social circle is getting too much for her. Benedict also holds a terrible secret about his clean energy machine. On Halloween night, an accident starts a series of hauntings — and the ghosts want something from the family. 

When you can read it: Oct. 26, 2021

Todd Babiak is a Canadian author and a screenwriter whose novels include The Empress of IdahoSon of FranceCome BarbariansThe Garneau BlockThe Book of Stanley and Toby: A Man. He currently lives in Tasmania.

Nothing Will Be Different by Tara McGowan-Ross

Nothing Will Be Different is a book by Tara McGowan-Ross. (Dundurn Press)

Tara McGowan-Ross has a nice job, a writing career and a forgiving boyfriend. She has it pretty good and she should be happy. Yet, she can't stay sober and she's terrible at monogamy. She's always feeling sick and tired. In the autumn after she turns 27, an abnormal lump discovered in her left breast becomes the catalyst for a journey of rigorous self-questioning. She shares this story in her memoir Nothing Will Be Different.

When you can read it: Oct. 26, 2021

McGowan-Ross is an urban Mi'kmaw artist and writer. She's the author of Girth and Scorpion Season and the host of Drawn & Quarterly's Indigenous Literatures Book Club. She's also a critic of experimental and independent Montreal theatre and an editor for Insomniac Press. 

My Best Mistake by Terry O'Reilly

My Best Mistake is a book by Terry O'Reilly. (HarperCollins Canada)

In My Best Mistake, Terry O'Reilly recounts how some of the biggest breakthroughs and best-loved products began with a mistake. Some mistakes lead to dramatic life changes and new opportunities and others seem minor, almost insignificant, until they lead to a famous brand, band or work of art. And occasionally, a mistake saves lives. This book will change how you think about screwing up and will encourage you to accept mistakes. 

When you can read it: Oct. 26, 2021

O'Reilly is an advertising expert, broadcaster and the author of two other books,The Age of Persuasion and This I Know. His radio shows have been broadcast on CBC Radio since 2005. He currently hosts Under the Influence. He lives near Huntsville, Ont.

No One Wins Alone by Mark Messier

No One Wins Alone is a book by Mark Messier. (John Ulan/Canadian Press, Simon & Schuster)

Mark Messier, one of the most accomplished athletes in the history of professional sports, tells his inspiring story in the memoir No One Wins Alone. He shares the lessons about leadership and teamwork that defined his career. He recounts his early years with his tight-knit family, learning from his father Doug, who was a hockey player, coach and teacher. He describes what it was like to enter the NHL as an 18-year-old and growing close with teammates during their high-flying years with the Edmonton Oilers. He shares the highs, lows and hard work that brought the New York Rangers to the ultimate moment, lifting the Stanley Cup.

When you can read it: Oct. 26, 2021

Messier is a former professional hockey player from Alberta. He played in the NHL for 25 years and won six Stanley Cups, five with the Edmonton Oilers and one with the New York Rangers. He's the only player to have captained two NHL franchises to championships. In 2007 he was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. That same year, the NHL introduced the Mark Messier Leadership Award, given annually to the player who's a great leader to his team, on and off the ice. 

Leonard Cohen: On a Wire by Philippe Girard, translated by Helge Dascher & Karen Houle

Leonard Cohen: On a Wire is a comic by Philippe Girard, translated by Helge Dascher and Karen Houle. (Philippe Girard, Drawn & Quarterly)

Leonard Cohen: On a Wire is a graphic biography of the legendary musician and poet. Written with details and drawn with rich colours by cartoonist Philippe Girard, Leonard Cohen is an engaging portrait of a cultural icon. 

When you can read it: Oct. 26, 2021

Girard is a comics artist from Quebec. He published his first comic in a children's magazine when he was eight and has since published more than 20 books. His comics have received awards such as the Joe Shuster and the Bedeis Causa Awards.

Dusk in the Frog Pond by Rummana Chowdhury

Dusk in the Frog Pond is a short story collection by Rummana Chowdhury. (Inanna Publications, Vidur Suddul)

Dusk in the Frog Pond is a collection of eight short stories that explore the lives of immigrants as they face the challenges of migration, displacement and cultural assimilation. Readers are introduced to unique social, cultural and traditional rural lifestyles in a remote village in Bangladesh, where the women are often in arranged marriages. These stories reflect joy and sorrow — depicting culture, tradition and past history in parallel with today's modernized world.

When you can read it: Oct. 29, 2021

Rummana Chowdhury has written 43 books in both Bengali and English, including poetry, short stories, novels and essays. She's a leading global commentator on issues of migration that affect the South Asian Diaspora. She emigrated to Canada in 1982 and now lives in Mississauga.

Me Tomorrow edited by Drew Hayden Taylor

Me Tomorrow is a book by Drew Hayden Taylor. (Douglas & McIntyre)

Me Tomorrow features essays by First Nations, Métis and Inuit artists, activists, educators and writers who discuss everything from language renewal to sci-fi. This collection is a powerful and important expression of imagination rooted in social critique, cultural experience, traditional knowledge, activism and the experiences of Indigenous people on Turtle Island. The book features Darrel J. McLeod, a Cree author from Treaty-8 territory in Northern Alberta, Autumn Peltier, an Anishinaabe water-rights activist and Lee Maracle, acclaimed Stó:lō Nation author and educator. 

When you can read it: Oct. 30, 2021

Drew Hayden Taylor is a playwright, novelist, script-writer and journalist from the Curve Lake First Nation in Central Ontario. He has authored nearly 30 books. He has also edited the anthologies Me Funny, Me Sexy and Me Artsy

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