Why J.K. Rowling can't lose with The Casual Vacancy

Categories: Books


British writer J.K. Rowling is making her first foray into the world of adult writing Thursday with the release of The Casual Vacancy. The question is not whether she can deal with adult themes - she does that valiantly in the Harry Potter series - but whether she can write about them without the fantasy elements that appeal to her fans. No matter what the critics think, the book will be a bestseller.

FILM REVIEW: The Master

Categories: Featured, Movies

The Master revolves around a tortured follower (Joaquin Phoenix) and his leader (Philip Seymour Hoffman). As the two characters orbit each other, at times their positions seem almost to reverse. Though undeniably linked to Scientology, Paul Thomas Anderson's masterful drama is ultimately an exploration of the attraction and the physics of the personalities who pull us in.

Syrian filmmaker Orwa Nyrabia says thanks after being freed

Categories: Movies, Social Media


Five days after his release from a Syrian prison, filmmaker and artistic director Orwa Nyrabia has sent a thank you to artists and supporters around the world who called for his freedom. Nyrabia disappeared Aug. 23, as he prepared to board a plane to Egypt, but walked free last Wednesday after being held at an undisclosed location. His letter is an impassioned plea for freedom in his homeland.

TIFF movies that shone the brightest

Categories: Movies


Toronto International Film Festival spotlights shone for 11 days and now the clamour is but a faded blur. But of the 39 films seen by CBC's Eli Glasner, some shone more brightly than others. Glasner names 14 of his favourites.

Blackbird, Caught in the Web explore risks of online expression

Categories: Movies, Social Media

Coming out of the Toronto International Film Festival, a pair of thought-provoking dramas -- from opposite sides of the world and depicting completely different stories and styles -- stood out for web writer Jessica Wong because of a thread common to both movies: the serious consequences we face as we express ourselves online.

Malaysian writers make their mark

Categories: Books

A Malaysian writer has been shortlisted for this year's Booker Prize, celebrating the best in English-language books. Tan Twan Eng's inclusion signals a coming-of-age in literature for the country whose arts scene has been long overlooked.

Meet the CCMA Rising Star contenders

Categories: Music


CBC News looks at the contenders for the Rising Star Award, which aims to tap the next big talent, at the Canadian Country Music Association Awards scheduled for this Sunday. Kira Isabella, at age 19, is real newbie, but fellow contenders The Stellas have been juggling day jobs and songwriting for years. Dallas Smith has crossed over to country from alt rock band Default, while Ryan Laird and Codie Prevost have been working at writing country songs and touring before making a mark as Rising Star finalists.