Books·Canadian

Touch Anywhere to Begin

Touch Anywhere to Begin is a book by Mark Anthony Jarman.

Mark Anthony Jarman

Two hands, one on either side of the book cover, reach for each other. The hand on the right is holding a glass cup with black liquid in it. Behind the hands is the sky. An airplane flies through among the clouds.

From acclaimed author Mark Anthony Jarman comes Touch Anywhere to Begin, his first book of travel writing since the publication of the critically acclaimed Ireland's Eye in 2002.

In 18 unusual, head-spinning essays, Jarman can drift through Venice amid the revelry of carnival and the arrival of the impending pandemic or visit a private club along Shanghai's Huangpu River to be serenaded by a band of retired People's Liberation Army singers. In "Panthers and Gods Prowl a Palace of Sin," an invitation to the Kala Ghoda Festival in Mumbai forges a connection with a jetlagged pair of Arctic throat singers and a doctor fascinated by Canada. In "Jesus on the Mainline," an extended hospitalization beside the intubated victim of a drunk-driving accident reveals a difficult family drama.

And this, of course, is only the beginning. Masterfully written, Touch Anywhere to Begin penetrates the impressionistic moments and intimacies of travel to reveal character and place like none other. (From Goose Lane Editions)

Mark Anthony Jarman is an essayist and short story writer. His writing has earned him the Gold National Magazine Award and Jack Hodgins Fiction Prize. Jarman's contributed to publications like The Walrus and The Globe and Mail and is a teacher at the University of New Brunswick, where he serves as the fiction editor of The Fiddlehead. His books include 19 Knives and Knife Party at the Hotel Europa.

Interviews with Mark Anthony Jarman

Mark Anthony Jarman has a new collection of short stories called Knife Party at the Hotel Europa. The Fredericton-based writer speaks with Colleen about how it came together.

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