Recent News and Announcements

news | Monday June 14, 2021

Five Father's Day Gift Ideas from Talonbooks

In anticipation of Father’s Day, we offer a list of five wonderful books to give fathers on Sunday, June 20, 2021:

1. In Search of New Babylon by Dominique Scali, translated by W. Donald Wilson. Order here.

2. Orwell in Cuba: How 1984 Came to Be Published in Castro’s Twilight by Frédérick Lavoie, translated by Donald Winkler. Order here.

3. Running on Fumes by Christian Guay-Poliquin, translated by Jacob Homel. Order here.

4. The Weight of Snow by Christian Guay-Poliquin, translated by David Homel. Order here.

5. Mégantic by Anne-Marie Saint-Cerny, translated by W. Donald Wilson. Order here.

Happy Father’s Day to all amazing dads from the Talon team!

news | Thursday June 3, 2021

Statement on the Kamloops Indian Residential School

At Talonbooks we grieve for the children whose lives were lost at the Kamloops Indian Residential School and for their families and communities. We stand in support of the Indigenous communities across Canada who have suffered the impacts of colonial violence. We offer our solidarity and our love.

We support the call for funding for ground-penetrating radar to be used at the sites of all former residential schools.

As publishers, we will continue to respond to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Calls to Action related to writing and publishing and to work to uplift and support the voices of Indigenous Peoples.

The Indian Residential Schools Crisis Line is available toll-free at 1-866-925-4419.

news | Tuesday June 1, 2021

2020 Governor General’s Literary Award Winner for Drama

We at Talonbooks are very excited to announce that Kim Senklip Harvey’s Kamloopa: An Indigenous Matriarch Story is the winner of 2020 Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama.

Talonbooks’ sincerest congratulations to Kim and the Fire Company!

Pick up your copy of Kamloopa: An Indigenous Matriarch Story today!

Kamloopa: An Indigenous Matriarch Story is the work of Kim Senklip Harvey, a proud Indigenous woman from the Syilx, Tsilhqot’in, Ktunaxa, and Dakelh First Nations, listed for the Gina Wilkinson Prize for her work as an emerging director and widely considered to be one of this land’s most original voices among the next generation of Indigenous artists.

The peer assessment committee of 2020 Governor General’s Literary Awards including Catherine Banks, Andrew Moodie, and Kenneth T. Williams have noted the following about Kamloopa: An Indigenous Matriarch Story: “The brilliance, the irreverence, the fire of Kamloop sweeps us into the world of three Indigenous women on a mind-bending quest. The audience is seduced by the love, humour and depth of these matriarchs as they embrace and celebrate who they are in the world and with each other. A play that will encourage you to re-evaluate your relationship with Canada.”

Listen to Kim’s interview about her award-winning play Kamloopa: An Indigenous Matriarch Story on CBC Radio One during As It Happens with Carol Off and Chris Howden here.

news | Friday May 21, 2021

The 2021 Indspire Awards Recipient in Arts

Talonbooks is so pleased to announce that Drew Hayden Taylor, one of our bestselling authors, is the recipient of the 2021 Indspire Awards in Arts.

The Indspire Awards is “the highest honour the Indigenous community bestows upon its own people.”

The awards ceremony will be broadcast during National Indigenous History Month on APTN, CBC TV, CBC Gem, CBC Radio One, and CBC Listen on June 22 at 8 p.m. Register your attendance to the 2021 Indspire Awards Watch Party here.

Among Taylor’s many awards are: the Canada Council Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for Theatre (2009); the Governor General’s Award for Drama, Nominee (2006) In a World Created by a Drunken God; the Siminovitch Prize in Theatre, Nominee (2005); James Buller Aboriginal Theatre Award for Playwright of the Year (1997) Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth; and the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play, Small Theatre Division (1996) Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth.

news | Thursday May 13, 2021

Governor General’s Literary Awards Finalists

We are so excited to announce that two of our wonderful books are finalists for the 2020 Governor General’s Literary Awards.

We have one finalist in Drama for Kim Senklip Harvey’s Kamloopa, and another in Poetry for Oana Avasilichioaei’s Eight Track.

Congratulations to all of our wonderful authors!

news | Tuesday May 11, 2021

Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show / Le Wild West Show de Gabriel Dumont, a bilingual co-publication, has arrived!

Talonbooks is so pleased to welcome the co-publication with Franco-Ontarian publisher Prise de Parole of Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show / Le Wild West Show de Gabriel Dumont, a bilingual book enhanced with a historical background, a chronology of the Métis Resistances, and visual documents.

Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show is a flamboyant epic, constructed as a series of tableaux, about the struggles of the Métis in the Canadian West. It is a multilayered and entertaining saga with a rodeo vibe, loosely based on Buffalo Bill’s legendary outdoor travelling show. In 1885, following the hanging of his friend Louis Riel, bison hunter Gabriel Dumont fled to the United States. There he was recruited by the legendary Buffalo Bill, founder of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West, a gigantic outdoor travelling show that re-enacted life in the American West. It made a huge impression on Dumont, and he dreamed of putting together a similar show to tell the story of the struggle of the Métis to reclaim their rights.

The creative team behind Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show – including fifteen authors and translators, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, French- and English-speaking men and women – brings Dumont’s dream to life in a captivating, joyously anachronistic saga.

Listen to Jean Marc Dalpé, David Granger, and Charles Simard discussing Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show on air with Radio-Canada’s Mireille Langlois here.

Pick up your copy of Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show today!

news | Monday April 26, 2021

Sharon Pollock, 1936–2021

We at Talonbooks are very sad to hear the news of Sharon Pollock’s passing at the age of 85.

A giant in the world of theatre, Pollock won the Governor General’s Award twice, and was formerly the artistic director of Theatre Calgary. She will be sorely missed, and our condolences go to her loved ones. Read more about her life and work over at the CBC.

Talonbooks is proud to be the publisher of Pollock’s play Walsh, and of Making Theatre: A Life of Sharon Pollock, by Sherrill Grace.

news | Monday April 26, 2021

CBC Books' Spring Poetry List

CBC Books has recommended four Talon titles on their Spring Poetry List!

They’ve recommended Stephen Collis’s A History of the Theories of Rain, Leanne Dunic’s One and Half of You, Anahita Jamali Rad’s still, and Daphne Marlatt’s Then Now.

If you have not picked up your copies of these wonderful books yet, follow the links above! All four are currently on sale for 25 percent off.

news | Thursday April 8, 2021

BC and Yukon Book Prize Finalists

We are so excited to announce that three of our wonderful books are finalists for the 2021 BC and Yukon Book Prizes.

We have two finalists for the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize Fred Wah’s Music at the Heart of Thinking, and Junie Désil’s eat salt | gaze at the ocean.

In addition, The Diary of Dukesang Wong, by Dukesang Wong, edited by David McIlwraith, and translated by Wanda Joy Hoe, has been shortlisted for the Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Prize.

Congratulations to all of our wonderful authors!

news | Thursday April 8, 2021

You’re invited to our Spring Launch on April 15!

Talonbooks Spring Launch poster.

Our Spring Launch, on next Thursday, April 15, at 5:30 p.m. PT, will feature Anahita Jamali Rad reading from their book still, Daphne Marlatt reading from her book Then Now, Leanne Dunic reading from One and Half of You, M.A.C. Farrant reading from One Good Thing, and Stephen Collis reading from A History of the Theories of Rain!

Thursday, April 15
5:30 p.m. PT
Register and receive the Zoom link

news | Tuesday March 23, 2021

We're Mad About Fado!

Cover of Fado.

We are so pleased to welcome Elaine Ávila’s Fado to Talonbooks!

A young Portuguese Canadian singer, Luisa, arrives home to find her mother weeping on the floor: back “home,” the greatest fadista of all time, Queen of Fado Amália Rodrigues, has just died. Luisa realizes she doesn’t know how to sing a single Portuguese song and that distance and time have separated her from an essential part of her roots. She embarks on a multicultural journey back to Lisbon’s meandering back alleys and lively cafés, winding through fados of resistance, emigrant fados, queer fados, in the hope of reclaiming her heritage and retrieving her own true song.

Playing to sold-out crowds in Vancouver and Victoria, Fado is on the
Playwrights Guild of Canada’s SureFire List of top Canadian plays by women
and is one of the 50 Playwrights Project’s 2018 Top Latinx Plays.

Pick up your copy of Fado today!

news | Tuesday March 23, 2021

And Now for Daphne Marlatt's Then Now!

Cover of Then Now.

Daphne Marlatt’s Then Now is hot off the presses!

A lyrical exploration of memory, family, catastrophe, immigration, and colonialism, Then Now was inspired by the discovery of letters written by Daphne Marlatt’s father, Arthur Buckle. Buckle left England in the early 1930s to join a British accounting firm in multiracial Penang, Malaysia. He continued living and working there until taking leave in 1941, returning after WW II, whose looming threat striates his early letters, and staying until 1951. Decades after the letters’ composition, Marlattbegan writing poems in response to them, interwoven with memories they provoked from her postwar childhood there. These poems are written from a sense of place and home on Canada’s West Coast now on the brink of another catastrophe, global climate change, so that throughout the book, “ThereThen” permeates any “Here Now” of immigrant consciousness and highlights the impermanent quality of “home.”

Pick up your copy of Then Now today!

news | Thursday March 4, 2021

Leanne Dunic’s One and Half of You is hot off the presses!

Photo of One and Half of You.

We are so pleased to welcome Leanne Dunic’s One and Half of You!

One and Half of You is a memoir that begins with the author’s growing up biracial on rural Vancouver Island. Not fitting in at school, she turns for comfort to her brother, who is in many ways her opposite. Only when she moves from the Island to the mainland does she meet another like her. Through sinuous language, risk, and surprising humour, this hybrid work explores sibling and romantic love and the complexities of being a biracial person looking for completion in another. Includes links to recordings of three songs.

Pick up your copy of One and Half of You today!

news | Monday February 22, 2021

Pink Shirt Day Is This Wednesday

This Wednesday, February 24 is Pink Shirt Day.

Pink Shirt Day raises awareness about bullying, and raises funds for anti-bullying initiatives.

We’re getting ready for Pink Shirt Day – are you?

news | Wednesday February 17, 2021

Impurity in Geist

An excerpt from Larry Tremblay’s Impurity, translated by Sheila Fischman, has been published in Geist!

“Something is choking him. He touches his face. It’s not his. The violent beating of his heart drives him out of bed. Then, all at once, it all comes back. He fell asleep with his wife’s herbal mask on his face. He showers. Greenish water runs off his face and disappears, swirling down the bathtub drain.”

Read more

news | Wednesday February 10, 2021

Good Thing: One Good Thing Has Arrived!

The most recent book from M.A.C. Farrant, who the Ottawa Citizen has called “One of the best humourists in the land,” has arrived!

One Good Thing is a charming collision of memoir with the living, exuberant, and vulnerable natural world. Written in sixty-four short epistolary chapters, Farrant’s latest offering represents a search for hope and appeasement in a rapidly changing and often perplexing society. One Good Thing is also an homage to gardening columnist extraordinaire Helen Chesnut of Victoria’s Times Colonist, each section of the book focusing and expanding on one of her gardening columns.

Using a familiar “Dear Helen” structure, almost every piece in One Good Thing intimately and playfully relates to the gardening article that gave rise to it while simultaneously ranging into myriad other topics, including the author’s creative practice, personal and familial details, and comic riffs on a number of close-to-the-heart themes. With a mindful persistence that’s often hilarious, the book strives to find personal “calm abidance” through the practice of gardening as mediated by the universal and personal practice of writing.

Pick up your copy of One Good Thing today!

news | Tuesday February 9, 2021

Painting Time Is Hot Off the Presses!

We are so pleased to welcome Painting Time, by Maylis de Kerengal and translated by Jessica Moore.

In 2007, Paula Karst begins her studies at the famous Institut de Peinture in Brussels. There she meets two friends, both enigmatic, resourceful, impulsive, and gifted. Together, the three weave a complex relationship that mirrors the interconnectedness of their artistic materials. Replicating the grain of wood, the wear of marble, or the protrusion on a tortoiseshell requires method, technique, talent … but also something else. Paula strives to understand what she’s painting, the “micro” that she is and the “macro” that she contemplates in art history. She chooses the painstaking demands of craftmanship over the abstraction of high art.

Paula’s apprenticeship is punctuated by hard work, sleepless nights, sore muscles, and saturnalian evenings. After completing her studies at the Institute, she continues to practise her art in Paris, in Moscow, and then in Italy at Cinécittà, on the sets of great films – dream factories! – as if rehearsing for the grand finale: Lascaux IV, a life-sized replica of the world’s most famous paleolithic cave art and a zenith of human cultural expression.

This exquisite and highly aesthetic coming-of-age novel by the author of Birth of a Bridge and Mend the Living uses a succession of trompe-l’oeil techniques to explore a young woman’s art apprenticeship. Maylis de Kerangal, expertly translated by Jessica Moore, offers the key to the enchanted materialism of her writing.

“Kerangal balances the gloriously sensuous with the deeply reflective in an exquisite and omniscient streaming narration … resplendently evocative and exhilarating.”
—Booklist

Pick up your copy of Painting Time today!

news | Thursday January 7, 2021

In remembrance of Taran Kootenhayoo

Talonbooks is deeply saddened to hear of the recent death of Taran Kootenhayoo. This gifted young actor, playwright, and poet performed in several plays we’ve published, and more than once kindly gave us permission to include his image in our books. Taran was integral to Vancouver film and theatre and will truly be missed. We send our heartfelt condolences to his family and to his communities.

Link to CBC Article
Link to fundraiser for Taran’s Family

news | Tuesday December 22, 2020

January 28 Zoom Launch!

We are very excited to be launching four wonderful new books, on Thursday, January 28, at 5:30 p.m. PT, via Zoom! Cecily Nicholson will introduce the following wonderful Talon authors:

Fred Wah reading from Music at the Heart of Thinking
Colin Browne reading from Here
Junie Desil reading from eat salt | gaze at the ocean
Taryn Hubbard reading from Desire Path

Thursday, January 28
5:30 p.m. PT
The reading is free, but you need to register in advance through Zoom.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the reading.

news | Monday December 21, 2020

Pause and Repeat: A Christmassy story from M.A.C. Farrant's The World Afloat

We’re happy to be sharing another Christmassy tale from M.A.C. Farrant this almost-Christmas! Talon’s offices will be closed from December 24th, reopening the morning of January 4th. Happy holidays, everyone!


We look forward to the comatose reverence that comes with Christmas.

The season begins in early November when time starts giving off a creaking sound. It’s going through its annual process of hardening. Our shoulders roll inward then and our heads collapse onto our chests as if in avoidance or prayer. Some of us make slow, grimacing smiles, stretching our mouths as wide as we can, repeating this motion several times, and then pausing.

During the lead-up to Christmas we no longer suffer from lost English reserve and everyone tries to be quiet. Once achieved, we bring our lips together and forward as though kissing a baby and flutter our eyelashes as fast as we can. This signals the arrival of the cart filled with tinsel. It’s drawn by Lula the Malamute wearing a hat of reindeer horns.

Her arrival completes the seasonal outline, the one that is meant to endure. And Jimmy in the red suit on the roof blowing his nose. 

From The World Afloat, 2014

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