THE DANCEHALL YEARS
352 pages, $23.95
"With the splendid flexibility of her narrating voice and empathetic heart, Joan Haggerty has conjured up a richly textured world in order to explore the dreams, heartbreaks, adventures, and surprises of a unique collection of west-coasters. A major accomplishment.”–Jack Hodgins, author of Broken Ground
“The Dancehall Years is an elegy to a coastal culture almost lost—island cottages with views of the Union Steamships in Howe Sound, the Japanese gardeners before WWII and the terrible internments, forgotten inlets and logging camps, long summer evenings in the dancehall, with its circle of white Corinthian columns, where ‘you're only allowed to dance inside the columns if you're in love or if you're spectacular dancers.’ Haggerty explores the intricate ecology of families, where memory and love are as tangled and difficult as blackberry canes surrounding the cottages, their histories echoing.”–Theresa Kishkan, author of Patrin
This enriching, complex family saga and interracial drama brims with beautiful writing. It begins one summer on Bowen Island during the Depression and moves through Pearl Harbour and the evacuation of the Japanese and into the 1970s. Gwen Killam is a child on Bowen whose idyllic summers are obliterated by the outbreak of the war. Her swimming teacher, Takumi Yoshito, disappears along with his parents who are famous for their devotion to the Bowen Inn gardens. The Lower Mainland is in blackout, and so is the future of Gwen’s beloved Aunt Isabelle who must make an unthinkable sacrifice. The Bowen Island dancehall is well-known during the war as a moonlight cruise destination and it becomes an emotional landmark for time passing and remembered. Brilliantly crafted, The Dancehall Years is a literary gem.
Joan Haggerty was born in 1940 and raised in Vancouver, B.C. From 1962 to 1972 she lived and wrote in London, England; Formentera, Spain; and New York City. Returning to the B.C. coast, she made her home in Roberts Creek and Vancouver where she taught in the Creative Writing Dept. at U. B.C. She began a second career as a high school teacher in the Bulkley Valley in 1990. Her previous books are Please, Miss, Can I Play God?, Daughters of the Moon, and The Invitation which was nominated for the Governor General’s Award in 1994.
PRAISE FOR THE DANCEHALL YEARS
“Takumi’s story is one of the many rich narrative threads…the numerous characters are all well-developed. A beautifully written saga, combines the deep complexity of family, love, memory and community. A sophisticated novel.”- BC BookWorld
“Prepare to be swept away, rich and sweeping, Joan Haggerty is an extraordinary writer, her prose Woolfian in its stream of consciousness, its immediacy”- Pickle Me This
“Dancehall Years an intricate and intimate novel”-Vancouver Sun
by Theresa Kishkan
142 pgs, $17.95
"Follow Patrin on her delicate trail into the heart of old Europe, where time is one with experience--and experience is a satisfying feast for the senses. With inimitable, quiet graceTheresa Kishkan will gently lead you on an intimate journey into the truest places of the human heart.”–Pauline Holdstock
“Patrin is a thoughtful reflection on one's search for identity and self acceptance. Rooted in the exploration of origin stories and veiled connections to the present it reveals our innate need for ancestral belonging and meaning." –Gurjinder Basran
Patrin- is the old word for the clues Roma people left for their travelling fellows – a handful of leaves or twigs tied to a tree.
Patrin Szkandery, a young woman living in Victoria BC in the 1970s, restores an ancient quilt and travels to Czechoslovakia to trace her Roma history over the unsettling terrain of central Europe in the years of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The pieced cloth proves to be both coded map and palimpsest (patrin) of her extended family’s nomadic wandering through Moravia in the first decade of the 20th century. The elegant and beautifully attentive lyric prose of Kishkan’s earlier work in fiction and memoir is augmented here with masterful pace and plotting. Patrin is a little jewel of a novella, an exquisitely nuanced and moving glimpse into the grand themes of exile and homecoming across continents. Stitched seamlessly it is a suspenseful and historic tale.
Theresa Kishkan is the author of eleven books of poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction. Mnemonic: A Book of Trees was a finalist for the 2012 Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize. She won the Edna Staebler Personal Essay Prize. Her books have been nominated for many awards, including the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, the Pushcart Prize, and the Relit Award. She lives on the Sechelt Peninsula with her husband John Pass.
by Gillian Wigmore
120 pages, $16.95
Short-listed for the 1st Great BC Novel Contest
"deft, memorable language" - Quill & Quire
"Rarely have I read such a sensual engagement between words and landscape. Grayling is a work of profound Canadiana--as fast and rough and bright and bracing as the Dease River itself."–Annabel Lyon, author of The Sweet Girl
"Packing quiet wisdom and a poet's eye, Grayling takes us on a spellbinding journey through a grim and gorgeous north country. Haunting, surprising, and unforgettable."
–Bill Gaston, author of The World, Sointula and Juliet Was A Surprise
After surviving a health crisis, Jay heads to the remote and challenging Dease River in Northwestern BC for a canoe and fishing journey, but is unprepared for the mysterious stranger who becomes his passenger. A lean and intense tale that takes the reader to haunting depths. A seminal and brilliant addition to a neglected genre.
Gillian Wigmore is the author of three books of poetry including Soft Geography, which won of the 2008 ReLit Award. Her work has been shortlisted for the Great BC Novel Contest, the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize and the Malahat Review Long Poem Prize, and has been anthologized in Force Field: 77 Women Poets of British Columbia (Mother Tongue Publishing, 2013). This is her first work of fiction. She lives in Prince George, BC.
Eight debut short stories
by Julia Leggett
200 pages, $19.95
"A smart, surefooted collection that will steal your heart. Julia Leggett's debut offers engaging stories about the choices between love and despair with swift and sharp insights, page after page."- Eufemia Fantetti, author of A Recipe for Disaster & Other Unlikely Tales of Love
A collection of eight sharply imaginative short stories that focus on women's relationships with their bodies, their lovers, their female friends, and their health. After an overweight cubicle worker takes a diet pill she loses sixty pounds in eight hours and her relationships with other women begins to change. A bossy stay-at-home mom's husband leaves her for a younger woman, and while trying to make sense of her suddenly altered life, she has an otherworldly experience. A young therapist struggles to face her terminal cancer diagnosis as her body slowly gives out. While on vacation in Italy, a successful copy editor who longs to escape from her life follows a stranger home. These are just a few of the captivating characters that inhabit Julia Leggett's witty and brilliant debut fiction.
Julia Leggett was born in Calgary but grew up in Zimbabwe. She has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. She has served on the poetry editorial board for PRISM international Magazine. Her work has appeared in Force Field: 77 Women Poets of British Columbia, edited by Susan Musgrave (Mother Tongue Publishing, 2013). She lives in Victoria, B.C., where she is working on her Master's in Counselling Psychology and a book of poetry.
by Eufemia Fantetti
100 pages, $17.95
FINALIST for the Danuta Gleed Literary Award!
WINNER of the 2014 F.G. Bressani Literary Prize for Short Fiction
“Recipe for Disaster is a delicious treat. With her fresh, intelligent voice and lush prose, Eufemia Fantetti serves up stories that are at once achingly familiar and laugh-out-loud funny.”– Ayelet Tsabari, The Best Place on Earth
Funny, tender and poignant, A Recipe for Disaster is populated by quirky characters who blend desire, imperfect love and comfort food into the sweet and salty mix of daily life while they yearn for the sustenance of human connection. A bemused child witnesses her mother flirt with a police officer responding to a domestic dispute call. A young woman mourns the end of a relationship, recalling the potently toxic recipe that created the disastrous union. A son struggles to accept his father’s emotional frailties and reject his passive approach to loss. A couple finally commits–to breaking up. A recently divorced woman meditates on the source of her ravenous cravings. A woman decides to end the prolonged vow of silence she took with her devout, hyper-critical mother. Six skillful and witty stories that will engage your heart.
Eufemia Fantetti is a graduate of The Writer's Studio at SFU and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph. She is a winner of Event Magazine’s Creative Non-Fiction Contest and the 7th annual Accenti Writing Contest. Her essay, “Alphabet Autobiografica,” was listed under notable essays in the 2009 Best American Essay Series. Her work is included in the anthologies Contours, Beyond Crazy, Emails from India and the 2012 Fish Anthology. A two-time finalist for Theatre BC's National Playwriting Competition, Eufemia has had plays produced across Canada, including The Waiting Room, An Italian Tale, It’s All the Rage and My Own Private Etobicoke. She has performed stand-up comedy in Toronto, Vancouver and the Catskills. She co-hosted the SFU’s Studio Reading Series and co-founded the series, Speakeasy, in Ontario. A resident of BC for many years she now lives in Toronto, where she’s at work on a memoir. A Recipe for Disaster & Other Unlikely Tales of Love is her debut book. Visit eufemiafantetti.com.
260 pgs, $21.95
2012 Top 5 Canada reads Choice in BC/Yukon
Winner of the 2011 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize
Three weeks Reader’s Choice for the ScotiaGiller Prize
Search For the Great BC Novel Contest,
2008 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award semi-finalist
Everything Was Good-bye centers around Meena, a young Indo Canadian woman growing up in the lower mainland of British Columbia and traces her life as she struggles to assert her independence in a Punjabi community. Raised by her tradition bound widowed mother, Meena knows the freedoms of her Canadian peers can never be hers, but unlike her sisters, she is reluctant to submit to a life that is defined by a suitable marriage. Through a narrative moving between race and culture, it is ultimately a story of love, loss and self acceptance amidst shifting cultural ideals.
Gurjinder Basran’s debut novel, Everything Was Good-bye, was the winner of Mother Tongue Publishing's “Search for the Great BC Novel Contest” in 2010 and was recently awarded B.C.’s Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize for the most outstanding work of fiction. As a manuscript, Everything Was Good-bye was shortlisted for Amazon.com's 2008 Breakthrough Novel Award and earned her a place in The Vancouver Sun's annual speculative arts and culture article "One's to Watch." Gurjinder studied creative writing at Simon Fraser University and the Banff Center for the Arts and currently lives in Delta, British Columbia with her husband and two sons.
by Kathryn Para
224 pages, $21.95
Finalist for the 2014 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize!
WINNER of the 2nd Great BC Novel Contest!
"Lucky is a beautiful, harsh novel, tension-filled, its language startling and fresh. It's also funny, thanks to the unflinching perceptions of its daring and damaged protagonist, Ani, war photojournalist and surly survivor. Lucky me. I got to read this book first."– Caroline Adderson, Final Judge for the 2nd Search for the Great BC Novel Contest.
Lucky by Kathy Para, is an unflinching novel set in the Middle East and Canada. It tells the story of Anika Lund, a freelance war photographer with an ambition to photograph an infamous terrorist, and her best friend and translator, Viva, who seeks answers to the mystery of her husband's disappearance in Syria. In the fall of 2004, they gain access to Iraqi resistance fighters, and entrance to the broken city of Fallujah, igniting a series of terrifying events that exact a price that becomes too much to bear. Lucky explores essential questions about war photography, the price paid by journalists and the moral dilemmas of love and war.
Kathryn Para is an award-winning, multi-genre writer with a MFA in Creative Writing from UBC. Her fiction, non-fiction and poetry have been published in Grain, Room of One's Own, Geist, Sunstream, and Vancouver Review. She is the 2013 winner of Mother Tongue Publishing's Search for the Great BC Novel Contest. Her stage play, Honey, debuted in 2004. She has also written, directed and produced short films. She lives in Gibsons, BC. Lucky is her first novel. Visit