Book picks as published in the March 11, 2020 St. Albert Gazette. For more great reads, check here.
Son of a trickster : a novel
By Eden Robinson
Eden Robinson blends humour with heartbreak in this compelling coming-of-age novel. Jared is only sixteen but feels like he is the one who must stabilize his family’s life, even look out for his elderly neighbours. But he’s puzzled over why his maternal grandmother has never liked him, why she says he’s the son of a trickster, that he isn’t human. Shortlisted for Canada Reads 2020.
Radicalized : a novel
By Cory Doctorow
Told through one of the most on-pulse genre voices of our generation, Radicalized is a timely collection consisting of four SciFi novellas connected by social, technological, and economic visions of today and what America could be in the near, near future. Shortlisted for Canada Reads 2020. Join us for the Library’s own Canada Reads debate with local celebrities on Saturday, March 14.
The Seniors Book Club will meet at 2:00 pm on Wednesday, March 11 in Forsyth Hall to discuss The Stranger in the Woods by Michael Finkel.
About the book
Many people dream of escaping modern life. Most will never act on it—but in 1986, twenty-year-old Christopher Knight did just that when he left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the woods. He would not have a conversation with another person for the next twenty-seven years.
Drawing on extensive interviews with Knight himself, journalist Michael Finkel shows how Knight lived in a tent in a secluded encampment, developing ingenious ways to store provisions and stave off frostbite during the winters. A former alarm technician, he stealthily broke into nearby cottages for food, books, and supplies, taking only what he needed but sowing unease in a community plagued by his mysterious burglaries. Since returning to the world, he has faced unique challenges—and compelled us to reexamine our assumptions about what makes a good life. By turns riveting and thought-provoking, The Stranger in the Woods gives us a deeply moving portrait of a man determined to live his own way. (Publisher)
About the author
A hermit’s lonely path: an interview with Michael Finkel
‘There have always existed people who’ve simply wanted to be alone’: an interview with Michael Finkel
Review in The Globe and Mail
Review in The Guardian
Review in the New York Times
This reclusive life: what I learned about solitude from my time with hermits
Hermitary: hermits around the web
The Monday Evening Book Club will meet at 7:00 pm on Monday, March 9 in Forsyth Hall to discuss Homes: A Refugee Story by Abu Bakr Al Rabeeah with Winnie Yeung.
About the book
In 2010, the al Rabeeah family left their home in Iraq in hope of a safer life. They moved to Homs, in Syria – just before the Syrian civil war broke out.
Abu Bakr, one of eight children, was ten years old when the violence began on the streets around him: car bombings, attacks on his mosque and school, firebombs late at night. Homes tells of the strange juxtapositions of growing up in a war zone: horrific, unimaginable events punctuated by normalcy – soccer, cousins, video games, friends.
Homes is the remarkable true story of how a young boy emerged from a war zone with a passion for sharing his story and telling the world what is truly happening in Syria. As told to her by Abu Bakr al Rabeeah, writer Winnie Yeung has crafted a heartbreaking, hopeful, and urgently necessary book that provides a window into understanding Syria. (Amazon)
About Winnie Yeung
Radio interview with Shelagh Rogers
Interview with Chuck Comeau for Canada Reads
Article in The Guardian
Article in the Edmonton Journal
Review in Quill and Quire
Review in Alberta Views
Book backgrounder for teachers
BBC News: Syria: The story of the conflict
Book picks as published in the February 12, 2020 St. Albert Gazette. For more great reads, check here.
A Small silence : a novel
By Jumoke Verissimo
Prof is an ex-prisoner, activist and retired academic, who resolves to live a life of darkness after his release from prison. He holes up in his apartment, pushing away friends and family, and embraces his status as an urban legend in the neighbourhood until a knock at the door shakes his existence. Join us at the Library on Feb. 29 for an event with the author and Edmonton Journal columnist Lisa Martin.
Small game hunting at the local Coward Gun Club : a novel
By Megan Coles
This is a blistering Newfoundland Gothic for the twenty-first century, a timely portrait of a place in the throes of enormous change, where two women confront the traumas of their past in an attempt to overcome the present and pick up the future. Shortlisted for Canada Reads 2020. Join us for the Library’s own Canada Reads debate with local celebrities on Saturday, March 14.
Book picks as published in the February 19, 2020 St. Albert Gazette. For more great reads, check here.
How to do nothing : resisting the attention economy
By Jenny Odell
When the technologies we use every day collapse our experiences into 24/7 availability, platforms for personal branding, and products to be monetized, nothing can be quite so radical as . . . doing nothing. Here, Jenny Odell sends up a flare from the heart of Silicon Valley, delivering an action plan to become more meaningfully connected in the process.
All things being equal : why math is the key to a better world
By John Mighton
Mighton argues that math study is an ideal starting point to break down social inequality and empower individuals to build a smarter, kinder, more equitable world. Bringing together the latest cognitive research and incremental learning strategies, Mighton goes deep into the classroom and beyond to offer a hopeful–and urgent–vision for a numerate society.