Our publishers and their book elves have been working very hard, and they’re excited about some of the new books that are coming out this spring. Keep these titles in mind for your summer reading lists and look for SaskBooks at display events this year, because we will have these awesome books.
From Wild Sage Press:
Tending the Tree of Life by Irwin Kahan, illustrated by Wendy Winter
Limited edition of 200 copies; 112 pages, softcover, 6×9, full colour cover, b&w illustrations interior
$25 ISBN 978-0-9881229-8-7
Release date: March 2015
How did a Jewish farm boy from Saskatchewan end up participating in LSD experiments and other cutting-edge psychiatric research? The author tells the often dramatic story of his life simply, with humour and optimism, whether recounting anecdotes of life on the farm during “the dirty thirties,” in the Royal Canadian Air Force during World War II, or as a member of the research team that developed “megavitamin therapy.” He also describes his time with the Canadian Mental Health Association (Saskatchewan Division) and as founding General Director of the Canadian Schizophrenia Foundation, highlighting the compassion and dedication of a man who did his best to make the world a better place and tend the tree of life.
From Coteau Books (consider downloading their spring catalogue!):
Street Symphony by Rachel Wyatt
Short Fiction; 224 pages; 5.5×8.5
$18.95 ISBN: 9781550506181
Release Date: May 2015
A collection showcasing the trademark piercing insight and sardonic humour of one of Canada’s true masters of the short story. These are the songs of people – many of them seniors – sidelined and dismissed, but refusing to go gently into that good night – a night that isn’t even on their concert program! Be it through a percussive storm of revelation, or a quietly insistent ostinato that won’t be ignored, this is an orchestra of characters never content to be nothing, determined to be heard.
Rachel Wyatt is the award-winning author of seven novels, five short fiction collections, stage and radio plays, and non-fiction works. Over 100 of her plays have been produced by the CBC and BBC radio. She has been awarded both the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals, and in 2002 was made a member of the Order of Canada for her continuing lifetime contribution to the literary arts. She lives in Victoria, BC. Her other titles published with Coteau Books are Suspicion and Letters to Omar
The Tongues of Earth: New and Selected Poems by Mark Abley
Poetry; 128 pages; 5.5×8.5
$16.95 ISBN: 9781550506105
Release date: April 2015
The Tongues of Earth combines new Mark Abley poems with the best of his previously-published work. Endorsed by Julie Bruck, who won the Governor General’s Award for English-language poetry in 2012.
Mark Abley is a Canadian poet, journalist, editor, and non-fiction writer. The winner of Canada’s National Newspaper Award for critical writing, he has been a contributing editor of both Maclean’s and Saturday Night magazines, and is a regular contributor to the Times Literary Supplement.
The Days Run Away by Robert Currie
Poetry; 120 pages; 5.5×8.5
$16.95 ISBN: 9781550506082
A series of narrative poems in which Currie examines the moments that make up every ordinary, extraordinary life. In this sublime collection, the ‘eternal’ boyhood of setting traps, making dens, reading the Hardy Boys, spying on girls, worshiping cowboys, and playing hockey with frozen horse dung pucks gives way to sharp lessons about becoming a man – and to even harder ones about the coming of old age and infirmity. Sometimes mischievous, always commanding, and often heartbreaking, The Days Run Away is the human condition, handled in the unflinching yet compassionate words of a master poet.
Robert Currie is a former Poet Laureate of Saskatchewan and the author of numerous poetry and short story collections and novels. A teacher for thirty years, he lives in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. He is the recipient of Saskatchewan’s Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts.
Between Shadows by Kathleen Cook Waldron
Juvenile Fiction (grades 4-7, ages 8-12);112 Pages; 22.214.171.124
$8.95 ISBN: 9781550506129
12-year-old Ari inherits his grandfather’s unspoiled lakeside land and cabin. But his aunt and father want to sell it all to luxury hotel developers. It’s bittersweet: Ari’s beloved grandfather has died, but he’s left Ari an amazing gift – the inheritance of his log cabin and all the land he owned. Tucked into a small lakeside community, the cabin and its land are unusual, full of secrets to discover…and very, very marketable. As the grownups proceed with the paperwork, Ari sets about everything his new property has to offer. But the deadline to sign away the property is approaching. How can Ari speak up for his hopes, for his grandfather, and for the land itself?
Kathleen Cook Waldron is the author of numerous books for younger and older children. Kathleen lives and writes in 100 Mile House, BC.
Ghost Most Foul by Patti Grayson
Juvenile Fiction (Grades 5-8; ages 10-13); 192 pages; 5.5×8.5
$10.95 ISBN: 9781550506143
A gripping ghost story for younger teens about teamwork and standing up for what you know is right. Summer has just been made captain of her junior high school basketball team when her coach is “lost” in a plane crash. When she returns to school, Summer discovers the most popular all-star player’s step-dad is now the coach, and he’s a jerk; the team is already working hard to lump her in with Dodie, the team loser; and she can see the ghost of Coach Nola when she plays ball. With a crappy coach and a broken team that refuses to acknowledge its captain, they begin their worst season ever. If the ghost is trying to send energy through Summer to help the team, then summer is failing her miserably.
Patti Grayson is the author of two novels for adults (Core Samples, 2004; and One Spring, 2010). She is a school librarian who’s worked as a bank teller, an advertising writer, and a puppeteer (among other things!). Patti makes her home in St. Andrews, Manitoba.
The Lake in the Clouds, The Shards of Excalibur, Book 3 by Edward Willett
Young Adult Fantasy (grades 7-9; ages 13-15); 218 pages; 5.5×8.5
$14.95 ISBN: 9781550506167
The third shard of the sword Excalibur is calling Ariane. From a really, really long way away. In the third instalment of this modern take on Arthurian legends, Ariane – descendent of none other than the Lady of the Lake herself – is on the run and on her own. With her aunt under threat, Ariane has no choice but to walk straight into a trap. No longer using her powers to stay ahead of her enemy’s spies, she can sense the third Shard. Now all she has to do is win back a friendship, protect her aunt’s life, figure out her enemy’s next move – oh, and get to New Zealand and safely back with the Shard whose song is beginning to call her…
Edward Willett, writing under his own name and also as E.C. Blake, is the author of nearly 50 science fiction and fantasy, science, and other non-fiction books for both young readers and for adults. His science fiction novel Marseguro won the 2009 Prix Aurora Award for best Canadian science fiction and fantasy novel. His non-fiction writing for young readers has received National Science Teachers Association and VOYA awards. He was born in New Mexico and now lives in Regina, Saskatchewan. Also in the series: Song of the Sword, the Shards of Excalibur Book 1; and Twist of the Blade, the Shards of Excalibur Book 2.
From Thistledown Press:
The Greatest Lover of Last Tuesday by Neil McKinnon
Novel; 240 pages; 5.5×8.5
$19.95 ISBN: 978-1-77187-062-7
“Love is actually a blend of science and art, and like any science or art, it must be studied. It must be approached with the right attitude and from the right angle—from the point of view of finding someone to love — not of finding someone to love you.” This is the key lesson that self-proclaimed World’s Greatest Lover, eighty-year-old Alberto Camelo, aims to teach his skeptical neighbour Adriana in this comical novel about sexuality, relationships, and aging. Hilarity ensues as Alberto recounts the lascivious details of his lifetime of experience including his first brief sexual encounter in the garden and his marriage to a gold-digger. The Greatest Lover of Last Tuesday follows Alberto’s quest to climb to the summit of love and stand alone as a virtuoso in the realm of love. This uproarious novel will appeal to anyone with an open mind and a well-developed funny bone.
Neil McKinnon was raised in Saskatchewan and served in the Royal Canadian Navy before working as a businessman, archaeologist, university lecturer, and freelance writer in China, Japan, Mexico, Canada, and the United States. His articles have appeared in Canadian, Japanese, Mexican, and US publications, and his book Tuckahoe Slidebottle (Thistledown Press, 2006) was short-listed for the Stephen Leacock Award for humour and the Alberta Literary Award for short fiction. He has served on literary juries and has edited and published academically. When not visiting family in Vancouver, McKinnon lives in Mexico.
nakamowin’sa for the seasons by Rita Bouvier
Poetry; 80 pages; 5.5×8.5
$17.95 ISBN: 978-1-77187-0055-9
Release Date: March 2015
Rita Bouvier’s third collection of poetry nakamowin’sa for the seasons reflects her experiences as a Métis woman and as a guide to the history of relations with indigenous peoples. Her poems often focus on the sacred relationship to the land and changing seasons that is central to the imaginative and creative thinking of the Cree, Dene, and Métis cultures. Bouvier illustrates how much has changed as Western ideals have seeped into indigenous culture and explores the thinking that gives rise to injustice and inequity in the world. Through explorations of Métis identity, Bouvier captures the essence of a life that can be joyful one minute and filled with agony the next. This is a collection that encourages the reader to become caught in the movement and beauty of life — to dance, to breathe, to listen, and, of course, to sing.
Rita Bouvier is an educator and a writer. She has published two collections of poetry with Thistledown Press, Blueberry Clouds (1999) and papîyâhtak (2004), and has been nominated for several Saskatchewan Book Awards. Bouvier’s poetry has been translated into Spanish and German, and her work has appeared in literary anthologies, musicals, and television productions. Bouvier lives in Saskatoon.
Brunch with the Jackals by Don McLellan
Short Fiction; 160 pages; 5.5×8.5
$18.95 ISBN: 978-1-77187-050-4
Release date: March 2015
In Brunch with the Jackals, Don McLellan explores the dark side of urban life through stories that combine black comedy, sharp observation, and heart-wrenching irony in a collection of neo-noir fiction. Featuring an abundance of twisting plots, seedy villains, and anti-heroes with questionable moral compasses, McLellan’s subjects hearken back to the era of dames and dirty cops, with observations and dialogue delivered in the stark language of classic noir. Brunch with the Jackals is both a throwback to and an advance on the “hard-boiled” style of forerunners like Raymond Chandler and Mickey Spillane. At times clipped and edgy, the tone hovers on the boundary between light and darkness. Mistrust and betrayal drive the plots, death lurks in the shadows, and blood is often spilled, demonstrating McLellan’s love of the literary grotesque.
Don McLellan has worked as a journalist in Canada, South Korea, and Hong Kong, and his journalism has been featured in countless publications including Vancouver, Equity, V, and Toronto Life. His short fiction has been published in Descant, Joyland, and The Dalhousie Review, and his debut story collection, In the Quiet After Slaughter (Libros Libertad), was a 2009 ReLit Award finalist. McLellan currently edits a trade magazine in Vancouver.
Bindy’s Moon by Lloyd Ratzlaff
Autobiography/Essays; 128 pages; 5.5×8.5
$18.95 ISBN: 978-1-77187-054-2
Release date: March 2015
In a series of reflections focused on his hard-working Mennonite family and touching on childhood exploits ranging from shoplifting and go-kart racing to the fear of dying (which arises during the rehearsal for a school Christmas concert), Lloyd Ratzlaff takes readers on a journey from youth to philosophical maturity. Humour and honesty define this spiritual journey, as Ratzlaff must confront his fundamentalist upbringing after his closest childhood friend Bindy is diagnosed with cancer and consequently reconnects with his own Mennonite faith. Ratzlaff offers a unique take on the spiritual journey many others have experienced, combining humour and quiet reflection in a poignant prairie coming-of-age autobiography.
3rd place winner 2014 John V. Hicks Long Manuscript Award
Bindy’s Moon is the third book in Lloyd Ratzlaff’s series of literary essays. Ratzlaff is the editor of an anthology of seniors’ writings published by READ Saskatoon and is a columnist for the Prairie Messenger Catholic Journal. He has served on the boards of several writing organizations and taught writing classes for the University of Saskatchewan Certificate of Art & Design program and the Western Development Museum. Ratzlaff lives in Saskatoon.
The Little Washer of Sorrows by Katherine Fawcett
Short Fiction; 208 pages; 5.5×8.5
$18.95 ISBN: 978-1-77187-049-8
Release date: March 2015
The Little Washer of Sorrows is a collection of short fiction that explores what happens when the expected and usual are replaced with elements of the rare and strange. Drawing on elements of magic and myth, Katherine Fawcett creates a world where science fiction and fantasy fuse with reality, and her strong, richly drawn characters face universal issues in unusual settings. The collection is both dark and comical with engaging plot twists and elements of the macabre as characters attempt to cope with high-stakes melodramas that drift further out of their control.
Katherine Fawcett was born in Montreal, raised in Calgary, has lived in Japan, and now calls Pemberton, British Columbia home. She began her career as a sports reporter before venturing into freelance journalism and commercial writing. After becoming a mother and turning forty, Katherine could no longer ignore her tendency to flout the boundary between real and imagined and has since turned her hand to fiction. Her short fiction has been published in Wordworks, Event, Freefall, subTerrain, and Other Voices. She teaches music in Whistler, BC and plays violin with the Sea to Sky Orchestra and the fiddle whenever possible.
What Can’t be Undone by dee Hobsbawn-Smith
Short Fiction; 280 pages; 5.5×8.5
$18.95 ISBN 978-1-927068-89-2
Release Date: March 2015
What Can’t Be Undone is a collection anchored in the Western Canadian landscape, and the natural imagery that has become synonymous to the area reigns supreme. These stories are powerfully influenced by local colour as Hobsbawn-Smith travels with her protagonists across rolling prairies, unforgiving mountain ranges, and along coastal highways. Each story combines Hobsbawn-Smith’s keen observation with an unflinching eye on her characters’ flaws to bring into painful focus the challenges of coming to terms with loss.
dee Hobsbawn-Smith’s award-winning poetry, essays, fiction, and journalism have appeared in Canadian, American, and international literary journals, newspapers, magazines, and anthologies including The Malahat Review, Gastronomica, and Western Living. Her first book of poetry, Wildness Rushing In (Hagios Press) was published in 2014. She recently completed her M.F.A. in Writing at the University of Saskatchewan, and she is an alumna of the Sage Hill Writing Experience. Hobsbawn-Smith lives west of Saskatoon.
From Gabriel Dumont Institute:
Taanishi Books—Emergent Reader Series by Wilfred Burton and Angela Caron
Complete 27-book set: $175
Individual titles: $7
This levelled reader set contains 27 books under 9 different themes, all relating to Métis culture. Each book has a level from A to I, word counts, cultural connections, and a lesson plan.
The Sash (Level A), Time to Dance (Level D), All About the Sash (Level I), We are Métis (Level B), Back to Batoche Days (Level E), Batoche Cheerleader (Level G), Dancing Shapes (Level B), Métis Dance Shapes (Level F), The Métis Star Dance (Level I), Bang! Beigne! (Level A), What Do You Like On Your Beignes? (Level D), Making Beignes with Kohkum (Level F), Can You See Flowers? (Level A), I Spy Flower Beadwork (Level D), Maria Beads a Flower (Level G), Yummy, Yummy in My Tummy (Level C), What’s for Lunch? (Level E), Rababoo Stew for Lunch (Level H), Squeak Squawk (Level C), Andy Learns to Fiddle (Level E), The Fiddle Competition (Level H), Where is the Métis Flag? (Level C), High in the Sky (Level G), Let’s Make a Métis Flag Pin (Level H), Where’s the Roogaroo? (Level B), Do You Believe in Roogaroos? (Level F), Is There a Roogaroo in You? (Level I)
From Purich Publishing:
Nationhood Interrupted: Revitalizing nêhiyaw Legal Systems by Sylvia McAdam (Saysewahum)
Non-Fiction – History, Indigenous Studies; 120 pages
$25 ISBN: 978-1895830-804
Release Date: February 2015
This book is the first of its kind. Traditionally and through custom, nêhiyaw (Cree) laws are shared and passed down through the generations in the oral tradition, utilizing stories, songs, ceremonies, lands, waters, animals, land markings and other sacred rites. The loss of the languages, customs, and traditions of Indigenous peoples as a direct result of colonization has necessitated this departure from the oral tradition to record the physical laws of the nêhiyaw, for the spiritual laws can never be written down. McAdam, a co-founder of the international movement Idle No More, shares nêhiyaw laws so that future generations, both nêhiyaw and non-Indigenous people, may understand and live by them to revitalize Indigenous nationhood. Nationhood is about land, language, and culture. Understanding and gaining an awareness of Indigenous laws will provide insight into the thoughts and worldview of Indigenous people before and during the numbered Treaty making process, and help create a harmonious society for all. Hopefully, then, the pain of the poverty, incarceration, suicide, death after death, without hope for the future, of nêhiyaw will become a distant memory. Nationhood Interrupted contains a significant amount of Cree, with a Cree Glossary for assistance. McAdam’s first language is Cree, and she explains significant cultural beliefs, traditions, protocols, and practices in an understandable way.
Sylvia McAdam (Saysewahum) is a nêhiyaw woman, a citizen of the nêhiyaw Nation, who holds a Juris Doctorate (LL.B) from the University of Saskatchewan and a Bachelor’s of Human Justice (B.H.J) from the University of Regina.
From Your Nickel’s Worth Publishing:
Am I the Only One? Struggling Being a Teen by Treena Wynes
Teen/Self-Help; 208 pages
$16.95 ISBN: 978-1-927756-37-9
Release Date: February 2015
It’s not easy being a teen. entering the adult world of judgment and responsibility can be tough, especially when you’re already dealing with a changing body. the need to stand on your own can conflict with your need to belong, and the overwhelming nature of it all can make you wonder if you’re the only one who feels this way. Am I the Only One? helps you see your potential, providing tools to build confidence and hope, and letting you know that even if it feels like it, you’re not alone.
Treena Wynes is a registered social worker with over 15 years experience working with teens as a child welfare worker, counsellor, and child and youth advocate. treena is also a mother of two boys: one transitioning out of adolescence and the other smack in the middle of it. Working with teens and raising her own has provided insight on the way our highly competitive, technological, materialistic world has changed the landscape of teen development.
Honouring the Buffalo: A Plains Cree Legend by Ray Lavalee, Judith Silverthorne and Mike Keepness
Children’s, First Nations; 48 pages
$14.95 ISBN: 978-1-927756-33-1
Release: February 2015
Through the Creator, the buffalo gave themselves as a gift for the sustenance and survival of the Plains Cree people. the largest land animal in North America once thundered across the Great Plains in numbers of 30 to 50 million. they provided shelter, food, clothing, tools, hunting gear, ceremonial objects and many other necessities for those who lived on the Plains. By 1889, just over a thousand buffalo remained, and the lives of the Plains Cree people changed. The buffalo is honoured to this day, a reminder of life in harmony with nature as it was once lived. This is the story of how the buffalo came to share themselves so freely.
Ray Lavallee is a Wisdom Keeper and Medicine Man from Piapot First Nations in the Qu’Appelle Valley of Saskatchewan. He has spent his life preserving and sharing the spiritual traditions of his Cree ancestors.
Judith Silverthorne, a multiple-award winning author, has lived most of her life in Saskatchewan, exploring its culture and history, and revelling in the natural beauty of the prairie landscape, which provides inspiration for many of her books.
Mike Keepness grew up on the Pasqua First Nation in southern Saskatchewan. To this day, the Qu’Appelle Valley, with its coulees, hills and rivers, is a place of prayer, sanctuary and inspiration for his work.
Dead Rock Stars (Illustrated Edition) by Wes Funk and Kevin Hastings (with foreword by Jay Semko of the Northern Pikes)
Fiction; 184 pages
$19.95 ISBN: 9781927756416
Release date: March 2015
Quirky record store owner Jackson Hill doesn’t know it, but his routine life in Saskatoon is about to take a bumpy ride. When his father dies unexpectedly, Jackson heads down the highway to his hometown in southern Saskatchewan. He knows the funeral will be rough, but he doesn’t expect to meet a handsome stranger along the way or to face-off with his brother about dark issues of the past.
A humorous tale of one man’s fascination with rock ’n’ roll, Dead Rock Stars is a stirring account of sibling rivalry, acts of forgiveness, and growing up gay on the Canadian Prairies.
A love of the prairie lifestyle, a strong belief in diversity, and a passion for music are strong themes in Wes Funk’s books. In addition to writing, Wes is also the host of the Saskatchewan weekly TV program, Lit Happens. Wes lives in Saskatoon.
Wascana Lake Through 4 Seasons, text and photography by Sheena Simonson
Photography, History; 144 pages hardcover
$34.95 ISBN: 9781927756409
Release Date: March 2015
From its humble, resourceful beginnings in 1883 as a reservoir, Wascana Lake and its surrounding area, known as Wascana Centre, have developed into a beautiful natural
oasis in the heart of the City of Regina. Wascana Centre has something to offer everyone—from recreational enthusiasts who hike, skate and cycle on its shores and paddle its waters to motorists who enjoy scenic drives; from wildlife that make their home in the vegetation along its banks to waterfowl that drop in en route to other destinations; from institutions that educate about nature to those that endow careers upon future generations and govern society; from locals to tourists who picnic in its parks and admire its flower gardens. The beauty of nature is evident in all seasons to the many people from near and far who have come to enjoy what Wascana Lake and its surroundings have to offer.
All the photographs in this book were taken in Wascana Centre between the Albert Memorial Bridge and the Broad Street Bridge, and most were taken within steps of the pedestrian trail that encircles the lake between these two bridges. Photographer Sheena Simonson trekked this four-kilometre circuit 82 times over three years to collect images of Wascana Lake and the nature surrounding it through all seasons. An estimated 328 kilometres of trail were covered in order to come up with the final images that make up this book.