Canada Reads 2021 Longlist

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All together now

All together now

Doyle, Alan, 1969-, author
2020

In 'All Together Now', one of Newfoundland's funniest and most beloved storytellers offers his cure for the Covid blues. As he says about this troubling time: "We get through it. We do what has to be done. Then, we celebrate. With the best of them."

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Autopsy of a boring wife

Autopsy of a boring wife

Lavoie, Marie-Renée, 1974-, author
2019

The hysterically funny and ultimately touching tale of forty-eight-year-old Diane, a woman whose husband leaves her and is having an affair because, he says, she bores him. Diane takes the charge to heart and undertakes an often ribald, highly entertaining journey to restoring trust in herself and others that is at the same time an astute commentary on women and girls, gender differences, and the curious institution of marriage in the twenty-first century. All the details are up for scrutiny in this tender, brisk story of the path to recovery.

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Butter honey pig bread

Butter honey pig bread

Ekwuyasi, Francesca, 1990- author
2020

This is the interwoven stories of twin sisters, Kehinde and Taiye, and their mother, Kambirinachi. A devasting childhood trauma causes the family to fracture in seemingly irreversible ways. After more than a decade of living apart, Taiye and Kehinde have returned home to Lagos to visit their mother. It is here that the three women must face each other and address the wounds of the past if they are to reconcile and move forward.

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Dirty birds

Dirty birds

Murray, Morgan, author
2019


Hench

Hench

Walschots, Natalie Zina, 1983- author
2020

A novel of love, betrayal, revenge, and redemption follows a young woman as she discovers that the greatest superpower--for good or evil--is a properly executed spreadsheet.

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Jonny Appleseed

Jonny Appleseed

Whitehead, Joshua (Writer), author
2018


The lonely hearts hotel

The lonely hearts hotel

O'Neill, Heather, author
2017


The midnight bargain

The midnight bargain

Polk, C. L. (Chelsea L.), author
2020

A sweeping, romantic new fantasy set in a world reminiscent of Regency England, where women's magic is taken from them when they marry. A sorceress must balance her desire to become the first great female magician against her duty to her family.

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Tatouine.

Tatouine.

Réhel, Jean-Christophe
2020


Thunder through my veins : memories of a Metis childhood

Thunder through my veins : memories of a Metis childhood

Scofield, Gregory A., 1966-
1999

A memoir of a Metis poet and writer.

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Tilly and the Crazy Eights

Tilly and the Crazy Eights

Gray Smith, Monique, 1968- author
2018

When Tilly receives an invitation to help drive eight elders on their ultimate bucket-list road trip, she impulsively says yes. Before she knows it, Tilly has said good-bye to her family and is on an adventure that will transform her in ways she could not predict, just as it will for the elders who soon dub themselves the "Crazy Eights". They each choose a stop, somewhere or something they've always wanted to experience, on the way to their ultimate goal, the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow in Albuquerque. Their plan is to travel to Las Vegas, Sedona, and the Redwood Forests, with each destination the inspiration for secrets and stories to be revealed. The trip proves to be powerful medicine as they laugh, heal, argue, and dream along the way. By the time their bus rolls to a stop in New Mexico, Tilly and the Crazy Eights, with friendships forged and hearts mended, feel ready for anything. But are they?

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Two trees make a forest : travels among Taiwan's mountains & coasts in search of my family's past

Two trees make a forest : travels among Taiwan's mountains & coasts in search of my family's past

Lee, Jessica J., 1986- author
2020

Jessica J. Lee embarks on a journey to discover her family's forgotten history and to connect with the island they once called home. After unearthing a hidden memoir of her grandfather's life, Lee seeks to piece together the fragments of her family's history as they moved from China to Taiwan, and then on to Canada. But as she navigates the tumultuous terrain of Taiwan, Lee finds herself having to traverse fissures in language, memory, and history, as she searches for the pieces of her family left behind.

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Wendy, : master of art

Wendy, : master of art

Scott, Walter, 1985- author, illustrator
2020

Finally Wendy has space to refine her artistic practice, but in this calm, all of her unresolved insecurities and fears explode at full volume--usually while hungover. What is the post-Jungian object as symbol? Will she ever understand her course reading--or herself? What if she's just not smart enough? As she develops as an artist and a person, Wendy also finds herself in a teaching position, mentoring a perpetually sobbing grade-grubbing undergrad. At its heart, this is a book about the give and take of community--about learning to navigate empathy and boundaries, and to respect herself.

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Yiddish for pirates : being an account of Moishe the Captain, his Meshugeneh life & astounding adventures, his Sarah, the horizon, books & treasure, as told by Aaron, his African grey : a novel

Yiddish for pirates : being an account of Moishe the Captain, his Meshugeneh life & astounding adventures, his Sarah, the horizon, books & treasure, as told by Aaron, his African grey : a novel

Barwin, Gary, author
2016

Around 1492, Moishe, a Bar Mitzvah boy leaves home to join a ship's crew, where he meets Aaron, the polyglot parrot who becomes his near-constant companion. From a present-day Florida nursing home, this wisecracking yet poetic bird guides us through a world of pirate ships, Yiddish jokes and treasure maps. When all Jews are expelled from Spain, Moishe travels to the Caribbean with the ambitious Christopher Columbus, a self-made man who loves his creator. Moishe eventually becomes a pirate and seeks revenge on the Spanish while seeking the ultimate booty: the Fountain of Youth.

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You are eating an orange. You are naked : a novel

You are eating an orange. You are naked : a novel

Sheung-King, 1994-, author
2020

A young translator living in Toronto frequently travels abroad--to Hong Kong, Macau, Prague, Tokyo--often with his unnamed lover. In restaurants and hotel rooms, the couple begin telling folk tales to each other, perhaps as a way to fill the undefined space between them. Theirs is a comic and enigmatic relationship in which emotions are often muted and sometimes masked by verbal play and philosophical questions, and further complicated by the woman's frequent unexplained disappearances. YOU ARE EATING AN ORANGE. YOU ARE NAKED. is an intimate novel of memory and longing that challenges Western tropes and Orientalism. Embracing the playful surrealism of Haruki Murakami and the atmospheric narratives of filmmaker Wong Kar-wai, Sheung-King's debut is at once lyrical and punctuated, and wholly unique, and marks the arrival of a bold new voice in Asian-Canadian literature. "Sheung-King has written a wonderfully unexpected and maverick love story but also a novel of ideas that hopscotches between Toronto, Macau, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Prague. It is enchanting, funny, and a joy to read."--Kyo Maclear.

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