Spring fiction title announcements are already upon us – and for Canadian fiction fans, there is much to be excited about. Here are a few forthcoming titles from authors we know and love — and a few we are sure to soon. Here’s part one of a two part post on a dozen such books to look out for.
The Glass Harmonica: a novel by Russell Wangersky: Another highly anticipated first novel from a Newfoundland author. Wangersky previously had critical and popular success with his memoir Burning Down the House: Fighting Fires and Losing Myself, a memoir that looked at his time as a volunteer fire-fighter. The publisher sets the scene of this suspense title in this way: “When retiree Keith O’Reilly witnesses the murder of his neighbour—an architect and “come-from-away” named Dennis Conners—by a pizza delivery man one night during a snowstorm, a unique series of stories begins to unfold.”(Thomas Allen Publishers – April)
Dahanu Road by Anosh Irani: the author of two previous novels, both set in Bombay, Irani returns to his native land for this third novel. “Zairos is a dissolute young landowner’s son living in the town of Dahanu, just outside Bombay, when his life of careless luxury is brought up short by a mysterious death: the sudden suicide of Ganpat, a tribal worker on his family’s estate. Soon Zairos has fallen in love with Ganpat’s daughter Kusum, and finds himself defying taboos with their relationship. At the same time his grandfather, Shapur, reveals to him the story of their family and of the land that Zairos stands to inherit. Violence and hatred echo through history, and Zairos learns the terrible truth his grandfather has spent a lifetime hiding.” (Doubleday – March)
One Bloody Thing After Another by Joey Comeau: Comeau is a young author of several titles, who lives in Toronto but once lived in Halifax. His latest(part horror story, part family tale) offers a strange and varied cast of characters, in a seemingly stranger and more varied series of situations. “One Bloody Thing After Another is a different sort of horror novel from the ones you’re used to. It’s as sad and funny as it is frightening, and it is as much about the way families rely on each other as it is about blood being drooled on the carpet. Though, to be honest, there is a lot of blood being drooled on the carpet.”(ECW Press – May)
Salt Water and Cinnamon Skin by Monica Rosas – “an inspiring first novel about a woman’s second coming of age. When thirty-year-old Clara returns to her native Brazil to put her life back together following a failed relationship, she witnesses a shattering scene and is suddenly forced to make a choice that will continue to haunt her in her quest for self-discovery.” The author describes herself as a first-generation Colombian-Peruvian Canadian author. She is based in Toronto. This title is the first book from a new imprint of Tightrope books, called Zurita, that will focus on Latino-Canadian writing. (Zurita – May)
Annabel by Kathleen Winter: The first novel from the Winterset Award winning author of boYs: a series of linked short stories that examine the male psyche. The setup for Winter’s much anticipated novel is as follows: “In 1968, into the beautiful, spare environment of remote coastal Labrador, a mysterious child is born: a baby who appears to be neither fully boy nor girl, but both at once.” The publisher describes the book as “Haunting, sweeping in scope, and stylistically reminiscent of Jeffrey Eugenides’ Middlesex, Annabel is a compelling debut novel about one person’s struggle to discover the truth in a culture that shuns contradiction.” (House of Anansi – June)
The Truth About Delilah Blue by Tish Cohen – a new book from an up and coming writer who made a splash in 2007 with her novel Town House. Her followup novel Inside Out Girl was released in 2008. In her next “Delilah Blue has always been an outsider, ever since she moved from Toronto to Los Angeles at eight years old, when, as her father informed her, her mother abandoned the family. Twenty now, and desperate to become an artist but unable to pay for classes, Delilah takes a job as an art model, removing her clothes for a room full of students so she can learn from the professors. Her only real companion is her still-single father, recently diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s. The condition worsens just as Delilah’s mother resurfaces and reveals an old secret that will change their lives. Delilah must decide if her mother is the selfish woman she assumed had left her behind, or whether somewhere deep inside her father’s memory lies a more complicated truth.” (Harper Collins – May)
all quotes are from publisher’s press materials unless otherwise indicated