All the Canadian books you should read this spring

Looking for a new read? Check out the books from the first half of 2023 we are excited about.

Looking for a new read? Check out the Canadian books from the first half of 2023 we are excited about.


The black book cover features a gothic illustration of purple iron gates opening with green ivy plants surrounding the gates, two gold birds above and in the opening of the gates, three symbols: two crescent moons and a gold spoon with a circle of gold light beams around it.
VenCo is a novel by Cherie Dimaline. (Random House Canada, Wenzdae Brewster)

Our top pick: VenCo by Cherie Dimaline 

VenCo is a subversive and imaginative adult novel about a coven of modern-day witches. The book's protagonist, Lucky St. James, finds herself down on her luck when she and her grandmother Stella are set to be evicted from their apartment. One night, doing laundry in the building's basement, Lucky finds a tarnished silver spoon that features an illustration of a witch over letters that spell out S-A-L-E-M. 

This alerts Lucky to Meena, someone who is part of VenCo, an international headhunting firm that seeks out exceptional women. An adventure unfolds involving secret witches, witch hunters, magic spoons and an epic road trip from Toronto to Salem, through Appalachia and into New Orleans.

Cherie Dimaline is a Métis author and editor. Her other books include Red RoomsThe Girl Who Grew a GalaxyA Gentle Habit and Empire of WildThe Marrow Thieves was named one of Time magazine's top 100 YA books of all time

The Marrow Thieves was defended by Jully Black on Canada Reads 2018. The Marrow Thieves also won the Governor General's Literary Award for Young people's literature — text and the Kirkus Prize for young readers' literature.

LISTEN | Cherie Dimaline on infusing her fiction with magic:
Cherie Dimaline on her new young adult novel Funeral Songs for Dying Girls, and how she sneaks social commentary into children's books.


On the left is a book cover with a photo of a person with short brown hair wearing a white tank top, black belt, and jeans on the cover. He is sitting in front of a red wall. There is a white border around the image with black text overlay that is the book's title and author name. On the right is a headshot photo of the same person wearing a long-sleeved white shirt with his arms crossed sitting in front of a yellow wall.
Pageboy is a book by Elliot Page. (HarperCollins Publishers, Elliot Page)

Our top pick: Pageboy by Elliot Page

Elliot Page shares his personal journey from the massive success of Juno to discovering his queerness and identity as a trans person, while navigating criticism and abuse from some of the most powerful people in Hollywood. Pageboy is filled with behind-the-scenes details and interrogations on sex, love and trauma. It's a story about what it means to free ourselves from the expectations of others and step into our truth with defiance, strength and joy.

Pageboy will be available on June 6.

Page is an Academy Award-nominated actor, producer and director. He currently stars in the hit TV-series The Umbrella AcademyPageboy is his first book. 


An illustration of an all-white woman walking through a grey field with grey trees behind, all set against a yellow sky. Scattered through the field are yellow pieces of furniture and other objects.
Adherent is a graphic novel by Chris W. Kim. (Chris W. Kim, Conundrum Press)

Our top pick: Adherent by Chris W. Kim

Adherent follows a young woman in a remote community that survives by scavenging for food and supplies in the forest where objects from civilizations past are scattered throughout. When the community finds several notebooks, the woman becomes obsessed with the idea of venturing out to find the author.

Chris W. Kim is a cartoonist and illustrator from Toronto. His graphic novels include Herman by Trade and Strays


The magenta book cover features the book's title "Wires that Sputter" in big, orange block letters, covering most of the book cover.
Wires that Sputter is a book by Britta Badour. (Penguin Random House Canada, Gilad Cohen)

Our top pick: Wires that Sputter by Britta Badour

Britta Badour's debut collection of poetry, Wires that Sputter, explores topics like pop culture, sports, family dynamics and Black liberation. 

Badour, better known as Britta B., is an artist, public speaker and poet living in Toronto. She is the recipient of the 2021 Breakthrough Artist Award from the Toronto Arts Foundation. She teaches spoken word performance at Seneca College.

WATCH | Britta B. performs her powerful poetry: 

Poetic License: Britta B - Dear Young Woman

5 years ago
Duration 2:49
Britta B performs Dear Young Woman and shines with a message all young women should hear.

Young adult

Delicious Monsters by Liselle Sambury
Delicious Monsters is a book by Liselle Sambury. (Stuart W., Margaret K. McElderry Books)

Our top pick: Delicious Monsters by Liselle Sambury

The YA novel Delicious Monsters is set in Toronto and involves a girl named Daisy who can see ghosts. When her mother inherits a secluded mansion in northern Ontario, Daisy discovers supernatural secrets that might be beyond her control. Flash forward a decade later and a teen named Brittney gets wrapped up in a mystery about what befell Daisy years prior. 

Delicious Monsters is for ages 12 and up.

Liselle Sambury is a Trinidadian Canadian YA writer and blogger. Her debut novel, Blood Like Magic, was on the shortlist for the 2021 Governor General's Literary award for young people's literature — text

LISTEN | Liselle Sambury reflects on writing for young people: 
Timmins author Liselle Sambury has released her third young-adult novel in as many years. Jonathan spoke to her about the inspiration behind "Delicious Monsters" - which is set in Northern Ontario.

Middle grade

Two white twin sisters with short brown hair in front of beige wall. Illustrated book cover of two young twin girls with grown hair touching hands. Multi-coloured background with many objects falling.
Tegan and Sara: Junior High is a middle-grade graphic novel by Tegan Quin, Sara Quin and illustrated by Tillie Walden. (Trevor Brady, Macmillan)

Our top pick: Tegan and Sara: Junior High by Tegan Quin & Sara Quin, illustrated by Tillie Walden

Tegan and Sara: Junior High is a middle-grade graphic novel by Canadian sister musician duo Tegan and Sara. The story is inspired by the authors' own experiences of finding one's identity, musicianship and family in their adolescence. Growing up as identical twins, Tegan and Sara move to a new home and school, and begin to come into their own as individuals.

Tegan and Sara: Junior High is for ages 10 to 14.

Tegan Quin and Sara Quin are twin sisters and a pop music duo from Calgary. They previously published a memoir called High School

Tillie Walden is an American cartoonist, illustrator and writer. She has published several graphic novels, including On a Sunbeam and Spinning.

LISTEN | Tegan and Sara talk about how their childhood inspired a middle-grade comic: 
Pop duo Tegan and Sara talk to Shelagh Rogers about their graphic novel Junior High, their lightly fictionalized account of entering Grade 7 in 1990s Calgary, illustrated by Tillie Walden.

Picture books

Man with short brown hair, bear and black glasses smiling. Person with pink hair and light skin. Illustrated book cover of the inside of a whirlpool with two people swimming. Blue text overlaid.
The Song that Called Them Home is a picture book written by David A. Robertson, left, and illustrated by Maya McKibbin. (Amber Green, Penguin Random House Canada, Maya McKibbin)

Our top pick: The Song that Called Them Home by David A. Robertson, illustrated by Maya McKibbin

Inspired by Indigenous legends, The Song that Called Them Home is a fantasy-adventure about a summer day with two siblings and their Moshom (grandfather) visiting the land. As Lauren, her younger brother James and their Moshom canoe on the lake, the waves begin to thrash and James is taken by the Memekwesewak creatures. Lauren is determined to find him and bring him back.

The Song that Called Them Home is for ages 4 to 8.

David A. Robertson is a children's author and member of Norway House Cree Nation. His previous picture books On the Trapline and When We Were Alone are both recipients of the Governor General's Literary Award. He currently lives in Winnipeg.

Maya McKibbin is a Two-Spirited Ojibwe, Yoeme and Irish illustrator, filmmaker and writer. She was nominated for the Governor General's Literary Award for illustrating the picture book Swift Fox All Along by Rebecca Thomas.

WATCH | David A. Robertson on what it will take for reconciliation: 

The path to healing and reconciliation in Canada

2 years ago
Duration 2:21
A visual essay by award-winning Cree author David A. Robertson and Anishinaabe filmmaker Jordan Molaro reflecting on the path toward healing and reconciliation in Canada.

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