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March 2015

Friday March 6, 2015
Book Launch: page as bone – ink as blood by Jónína Kirton

Tuesday March 10, 2015
Play Reading: The Book of Esther by Leanna Brodie

Wednesday March 11, 2015
Nikki Reimer at Twisted Poets Literary Salon, Vancouver

Thursday March 12, 2015
Poetry Reading: Phinder Dulai in Calgary

April 2015

Thursday April 2, 2015
M.A.C. Farrant at the Sidney Literary Festival on Vancouver Island

Tuesday April 7, 2015
Nikki Reimer at the Art Bar Reading Series, Toronto

Wednesday April 8, 2015
Nikki Reimer at Pivot Reading Series, Toronto

Sunday April 12, 2015
M.A.C. Farrant at gritLIT in Hamilton, ON

Wednesday April 15, 2015
Poetry Reading: Catriona Strang at SFU Lunch Poems, Vancouver

Thursday April 23, 2015
Play: “In Piazza San Domenico” by Steve Galluccio in Sudbury, ON

Thursday April 23, 2015
Talonbooks Spring 2015 Poetry Launch!
Wednesday February 25, 2015 in News
derek beaulieu’s ACAD students respond to Thrum

What have derek beaulieu’s ACAD students been up to this year? For one thing, creating gorgeous print-on-demand books. In Antiphon, a new POD book published by derek beaulieu, seventeen undergraduate art students from the Alberta College of Art and Design reply to the poetic implications of Natalie Simpson’s 2014 collection of poetry, Thrum, published by Talonbooks. About Antiphon:

In Thrum Simpson explores how language “grapple[s] every filament twisting without wind” in a roiling boil of the everyday made strange. An “antiphon” is a call-and-reponse, choir-based form of chant and with Antiphon a choir of students add their artistic responses to the fray. Each piece is accompanied by a short statement of artistic intent, allowing the artists to expand upon visuality. In this volume each contributor explores the boundaries of their own expectations allowing language to be loosened from the need to mean in favour of a reveling in sound.

Read more about Antiphon, or buy yourself a copy, on Lulu.

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Monday February 23, 2015 in News
From the Poplars to the City of Roses

Poet Cecily Nicholson will speak tomorrow at the University of Windsor, Ontario. Hosted by the English department, Nicholson will read once at noon on Tuesday and again at 7 PM. Nicholson will read from her latest collection of poetry, From the Poplars, which explores the history and socio-political dimensions of Poplar Island in New Westminster, BC. Windsorites, don’t miss this wonderful reader!

Find full details in our event listing.

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Thursday February 19, 2015 in News
Today on the Mountain: the Daphne Marlatt Archive Inauguration

Are you up on the mountain in Burnaby, BC? Head over to the library in an hour to hear Daphne Marlatt read from Liquidities and other works to celebrate the library’s acquisition of her archive.

Daphne Marlatt was born in Australia and immigrated to Vancouver as a child. She studied English and writing at U.B.C. (B.A. 1964), where she was a member of the TISH group of young writers that included Fred Wah, Frank Davey, and George Bowering. She is known best as a poet but has also published works of fiction, criticism and oral history, and has worked extensively as an editor and a teacher. In 2004 she became writer-in-residence at S.F.U., the first in three decades to hold this post. She was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2006, and in 2009 was awarded the Dorothy Livesay Prize for Poetry for her long poem, The Given. In 2012 she received the George Woodcock Lifetime Achievement Award.

Thursday, February 19, 2015
12:30–1:30 PM
Room 7100, 7th floor, W.A.C. Bennett Library (Special Collections)
Simon Fraser University, 8888 University Drive
Burnaby, BC

Refreshments & question period afterward.

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Monday February 16, 2015 in News
Birth of a Bridge a “Frontrunner” in Competition for Best Translated Book Award 2015

Birth of a Bridge is up for Three Percent’s Best Translated Book Award of 2015!

Maylis de Kerangal’s Birth of a Bridge (2014, translated by Jessica Moore), is a sweeping novel in which a dozen characters gather with a throng of workers to build a massive bridge somewhere in a mythical California.

While about 500 titles are in consideration for this annual award (which is given by the University of Rochester’s journal of translated literature, Three Percent), Birth of a Bridge has been included on the list of frontrunners (part one), with the following comment:

…yet another translation that hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves but which has the stuff to go far in the BTBA, introducing a new and distinctive voice (in admirable translation)

We wish Birth of a Bridge all the best in this competition!

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Friday February 13, 2015 in News
Book Review: Birth of a Bridge in the Bull Calf

The Bull Calf has recently published a review by Gediminas Dainius, in Issue #5.1, of Maylis de Kerangal’s 2014 novel, Birth of a Bridge (translated by Jessica Moore). Birth of a Bridge is a sweeping novel in which a dozen characters gather with a throng of workers to build a massive bridge somewhere in a mythical California.

Our favourite parts of the review are here:

The author is at her best when the metaphoric bridges that proliferate in the novel are understated, occurring organically and without fanfare. … de Kerangal uses the bridge motif in interpersonal moments like these to make some of the questions surrounding new connections more tangible, if no less easily answerable.

PEN America Translation Award winner Jessica Moore does an admirable job in keeping a strong sense of de Kerangal’s style intact. … ambitious prose that ebbs and flows in long, graceful sentences interspersed with shorter, punchier ones. _Birth of a Bridge_’s vocabulary is extensive, making free use of both colloquial and more esoteric terms and thus reflecting the diversity present in the narrative. …

de Kerangal refrains from taking a black or white stance concerning the issue of globalization, but instead uses the narrative to invite the reader to consider the complex environmental, social, and economical factors at play. … a relevant novel that leaves the reader with few concrete answers, but artfully poses a number of questions worthy of attention.

Read the full review here.

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Monday February 9, 2015 in News
Interview: rob mclennan interviews Phinder Dulai

Check out rob mclennan’s blog for an interview with poet Phinder Dulai, published late last week. Here is just one question and answer, as a teaser:

What other writers or writings are important for your work, or simply your life outside of your work?

There have been many writers, critical thinkers, artists, film-makers visual artists, as well as quotidian moments of everyday living, listening, and the collation of ephemera that my poetry and creative antennae pick up on. In terms of writing, this includes literature that is considered ‘high art’ and also popular fiction. My bookshelf includes a range of books by authors who make a home in Canada, the U.S., England and other nations. The first time I read something that absolutely shifted my thinking about narrative time was Virginia Woolf’s Orlando. The novel is truly an innovative fiction and engaged a robust re-consideration of narrative time that was revolutionary; and considering it was published in 1929, it adds more weight to Woolf as a true innovator at a time where the great novels were being celebrated. This is equally true of my second defining reading experience that led me to move my commitment to greater learning and discipline in my embryonic stage of writing, and that was after reading Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children and reading all of his subsequent novels. Both these novels really did do that for me in terms of then considering how I have looked at how time is sequenced within fiction and poetry, or in poetry’s case, how that flow is really more like dream time – image experiences that one floats through in a disjointed string of dream tableaus experiences. I see a clear connection to the sub-genre of magic realism to my work in poetry; and there are many poets who may not really have this in their lexicon, but I realize for the work I generate, I am always balancing the use of a clear social realism lens with interior lyric mode of address in poetry.

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Friday February 6, 2015 in News
Book Review: Birth of a Bridge in Three Percent

Three Percent is the University of Rochester’s periodical about international literature and translation. In the latest issue, Christopher Iacono reviewed Birth of a Bridge (2014) by Maylis de Kerangal, translated by Jessica Moore. Here are the final thoughts from the review:

The action in this novel (de Kerangal’s first to be translated into English) is fast-paced with long sentences that sparkle and flow like that under the sun; just as the characters in the story occasionally mingle, so do references to nature, artifice, and culture. … the reader never feels bogged down because of the passion and intelligence she displays in her subject, as well as her inventive use of language. In addition, Moore’s translation manages the impressive balancing act of maintaining the originality of Kerangal’s French prose while making it accessible for non-French readers. Overall, unlike the characters that constantly move from place to place, Birth of a Bridge will stay with readers long after they finish it.

Read the full review online.

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Wednesday February 4, 2015 in News
Read the Talonbooks Newsletter for February 2015

Check out our February newsletter, which includes the Spring 2015 catalogue, news, reviews, Valentine’s Day ideas, and more! Online here.

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Wednesday February 4, 2015 in News
Q&Q Shouts Out to Meredith Quartermain and Jordan Abel

Quill & Quire previews Spring 2015 books of all genres on its website this month, and two Talonbooks are mentioned in short fiction and poetry – Meredith Quartermain’s forthcoming collection of poetic short stories, I, Bartleby, and Jordan Abel’s Un/inhabited.

Pauline Johnson, Robin Blaser, Daphne Marlatt, and, of course, Melville haunt I, Bartleby (Talonbooks), the new collection of stories from Vancouver poet Meredith Quartermain. (source)
Un/inhabited (Talonbooks), the second collection from Nisga’a poet Jordan Abel, is a “source text” created by searching all the instances of words relating to territory, land, and ownership in the public domain works catalogued online by Project Gutenberg. The result is what fellow poet Shane Rhodes calls “graphic art, anti-poetry, a trace history of reading, and sociological groundwork.” (source)

Un/inhabited is available now for $24.95. Watch for I, Bartleby in April. See Q&Q’s other spring previews online.

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Monday February 2, 2015 in News
The Vancouver Sun recommends Phyllis Webb

Veteran Vancouver poet, George Fetherling, recommended “three books by B.C. poets that stand out in a crowded field” in his special article for the Saturday, January 30 edition of the Vancouver Sun: George Stanley’s North of California St. (selected poems), David Zieroth’s Albrecht Durer and Me, and Phyllis Webb’s collected poems, Peacock Blue. Rightly introducing Webb as “one of Canada’s most senior and most revered poets,” he writes that

Reading her work this way [as an edition of collected poems from a long span of years] is like watching the seasons change, for people who have been writing as many years as she has don’t ordinarily stand still for long. … she has remained active politically, gradually settling on a mixture of anarchism, feminism and environmentalism that is to be found only on the West Coast. … Peacock Blue is a most important book. It’s both a testament and a trophy.

Read Fetherling’s full article online.

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Thursday February 26, 2015 in Meta-Talon

A New Friend That Year in Paris: An Excerpt from As Always

At the end of September 1961, Madeleine Gagnon arrived in Paris to begin courses at the Sorbonne. Over the period of two years alive in that city as a woman in her early twenties, Gagnon reflects on the impact of the friendships, education, and culture she experienced as an “enigma of time written slowly” and a touchstone for life’s later challenges.

Today on Meta-Talon, read an excerpt from As Always: Memoir of a Life in Writing.

Thursday February 19, 2015 in Meta-Talon

Sample this book! It’s not shoplifting if we give it to you.

Today on Meta-Talon, read the first scene from Morris Panych’s new play, The Shoplifters.

Monday February 16, 2015 in Meta-Talon

Just for Fun: International Editions of Talonbooks

Many of the books Talon publishes are translations from French (Quebec) to English. But did you know that a number of our English books have been translated into other languages for audiences all around the world? On Meta-Talon today we show off a couple of examples.

Thursday February 12, 2015 in Meta-Talon

Literary Love: A Talonbooks Valentine’s Day List

A certain holiday whose focal point is romantic love will be celebrated this weekend. Whether or not you go in for flowers, chocolates, and candlelit dinners, we know your love for the lexical is long-lasting. Today on Meta-Talon we highlight ten Talonbooks that marry touching love stories with the power and beauty of the written word. We invite you to celebrate Valentine’s Day with us – by reading!


There are no specials at this time.

Current Catalogues

[image: Spring 2015 catalogue] [image: Talonbooks 2014 First Nations catalogue]



As Always

Madeleine Gagnon
Translated by Phyllis Aronoff & Howard Scott

Canada: A New Tax Haven cover
Canada: A New Tax Haven

Alain Deneault
Translated by Catherine Browne

Dead Metaphor

George F. Walker

Ebooks (Full List)


Get Me Out of Here

Sachiko Murakami

I, Bartleby

Meredith Quartermain

Limbinal cover

Oana Avasilichioaei

Odd Ducks cover
Odd Ducks

Bryden MacDonald

page as bone – ink as blood cover
page as bone – ink as blood

Jónína Kirton

Peacock Blue cover
Peacock Blue

Phyllis Webb
Edited by John F. Hulcoop

The Hatch

Colin Browne

The Keeper's Daughter cover
The Keeper’s Daughter

Jean-François Caron
Translated by W. Donald Wilson

The Shoplifters

Morris Panych

The St. Leonard Chronicles

Steve Galluccio


Jordan Abel

Winners and Losers

Marcus Youssef & James Long

Copyright Talonbooks 1963-2015



We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF); and the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council for our publishing activities.

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