Use Your Imagination! by Kris Bertin

Halifax-based writer Kris Bertin has won many awards for his previous short story collection, Bad Things Happen (2016, Biblioasis) and I'm sure that Use Your Imagination! (2019, Vagrant Press*) will garner its share. Composed of seven stories spread over 200 pages, these are the type of short stories you can really get into.

Three New 2018 Titles From Breakwater Books

These three new titles from Newfoundland’s Breakwater Books have something for everyone, from very young to a more mature audience.

Peter Pan Statue, Bowring Park

The Secret of Bowring Park by Christine Gordon Manley (with illustrations by Laurel Keating) is a fairytale for all ages, not just children. It concerns two sisters, Natalie and her older sister Elizabeth. They are visiting Bowring Park in St. John’s where there is a statue of Peter Pan with other creatures embedded in the base.… Continue reading

The Pink House and Other Stories by Licia Canton

I enjoy reading short story collections, particularly when there are connections between the stories, for instance, reoccurring characters. Such is the case in Licia Canton’s The Pink House and Other Stories (2018, Longbridge Books), her second collection of short fiction.

The two main characters throughout the majority of the stories are Rita, an Italian-Canadian, and an unnamed woman who gets struck by a car outside the Bell Centre in Montreal.… Continue reading

This Time Might Be Different: Stories of Maine by Elaine Ford

the healthcare world in which I work, a “sentinel event” is defined as: “any unanticipated event in a healthcare setting resulting in death or serious physical or psychological injury to a patient or patients, not related to the natural course of the patient’s illness.”  In the day to day mundane world in which we all live, there is typically one (possibly two) sentinel-like events that physically, if not psychologically change our life course.… Continue reading

Peninsula Sinking by David Huebert

(The following review is reproduced in part by the kind permission of Naomi MacKinnon of the Consumed by Ink book review blog. – James)

at the cover of this book. It couldn’t be more stunning. With stories to match. Peninsula Sinking is David Huebert‘s first short story collection. He has won the CBC Short Story Prize, the Sheldon Currie Fiction Prize, and the Walrus Poetry Prize, and is the author of one poetry collection We Are No Longer the Smart Kids in Class (which I haven’t read).… Continue reading

Too Unspeakable for Words by Rosalind Gill

Gill is originally from Corner Brook and attended Memorial University of NL before going on to do graduate work at McGill University. She is now a Senior Scholar in French and Translation at Glendon College, York University. Her stories and translations from French and Spanish have appeared in various Canadian journals and magazines.

Newfoundland & Labrador’s Breakwater Books has just released what may be considered quintessential short stories of growing up in Newfoundland in the late 50’s to early 70’s.… Continue reading

First Things First: Early and Uncollected Stories by Diane Schoemperlen

Schoemperlen is the award-winning author of twelve books of fiction and non-fiction. In 2016, she published is This Is Not My Life: A Memoir of Love, Prison, and Other Complications regarding her relationship with a federal inmate serving a life sentence for second-degree murder. Diane has lived in Kingston, Ontario, since 1986.

While Ms Schoemperlen has been a published author and one of Canada’s best-known writers of fiction, it was not until I came across This is Not My Life that I was introduced to her work.… Continue reading

The Fiddlehead No.272 Summer 2017

The “all fiction” issue of The Fiddlehead literary journal is packed with an amazing amount of short stories and reviews by authors from all over Canada. I have been working my way through it and I have hit several standout stories: Mrs Flood was Here by Sam Shelstad about a woman trapped in her car by a wolf.  Another is Mandrill in Repose by Richard Cumyn, an established master of the short story and novella.… Continue reading