Teardown by Clea Young reviewed in The Malahat Review

Susan Olding reads Clea Young’s Teardown on a flight from Toronto to Victoria and reflects on the collection’s strong sense of place for The Malahat Review:

“[Young’s stories] subtly and incrementally summon an atmosphere and convey to us the power of place. The ferries, beaches, conifers, craftsman’s houses, pastel apartment blocks, and swimming holes of Vancouver Island and the lower mainland may make it seem like an idyllic playground, but ferries sink, the ocean has an undertow, trees are subject to clear cuts, beetles, and fire. In other words, a beautiful backdrop can’t save anyone from making tough choices and facing tragedy. No wonder commitment seems risky. No wonder these characters hesitate to dive in.”

You can read the full review here.


Quill and Quire reviews Searching for Petronius Totem

In the June issue of Quill and Quire, Steven W. Beattie reviews Peter Unwin’s “flat-out, corrosive satire” Searching for Petronius Totem:

“a coruscating, frustrating, and sometimes blisteringly funny evisceration of sacred cows in the realms of digital technology, identity politics, and CanLit . . . a scabrous, gleefully offensive, high-energy ride across a landscape that looks oddly familiar, but is viewed at an oblique angle and through a purposefully distorted lens.”


Middenrammers by John Bart is shortlisted for the Kobo Emerging Writers Prize

Congratulations to Dr. John Bart, whose debut novel Middenrammers is a finalist for the 2017 Kobo Emerging Writers Prize! His fellow nominees in the literary fiction category are:

The literary fiction shortlist will be judged by Zoe Whittall, with the winner announced on June 27, 2017. For more information, including the non-fiction and speculative fiction shortlists, see here.


White Elephant is a finalist for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award

Congratulations to Catherine Cooper, whose novel White Elephant is a finalist for the $40,000 Amazon.ca First Novel Award! The award will be presented in Toronto on May 25, 2017.

Congratulations also to all the finalists:

  • White Elephant, Catherine Cooper (Freehand Books)
  • Accordéon, Kaie Kellough (ARP Books)
  • So Much Love, Rebecca Rosenblum (McClelland & Stewart)
  • Mysterious Fragrance of the Yellow Mountains, Yasuko Thanh (Hamish Hamilton Canada)
  • The Break, Katherena Vermette (House of Anansi)

And congratulations to Catherine’s editor, Barbara Scott. This is the second year in a row that a novel that Barb edited for Freehand has been on the Amazon.ca First Novel Award shortlist — last year it was Elizabeth Philips’s The Afterlife of Birds.



Teardown reviewed in the Winnipeg Review

This week in The Winnipeg Review this week, Josh Rioux writes:

“The central characters in Clea Young’s debut collection Teardown are all ‘adults,’ in the sense that they all seem to consider themselves to be hovering somewhere in relation to that concept, hyper-conscious of the space they’ve cultivated between themselves and whatever they imagine adulthood to mean… Teardown isn’t about characters who are growing up; it’s about characters who are desperate to convince themselves they are, which makes the collection an indicting read for anyone taking stock of how well they’re turning out.”

Read the full review here.


Teardown reviewed in Alberta Views

Naomi K. Lewis reviews Clea Young’s short story collection Teardown in the May issue of Alberta Views:

“This book’s captivating tales show characters in the last throes of nostalgia and regret for the heady joys and miseries of youth, awkwardly adjusting to unambiguous adulthood and approaching middle age . . . Young’s stories are as entertaining as they are devastating, and often take a deft, last-minute turn toward hope.”


What the Soul Doesn’t Want reviewed in Quill and Quire

Lorna Crozier’s stunning new collection, What the Soul Doesn’t Want, will be available in May, but Quill and Quire has an advance review now. They call What the Soul Doesn’t Want “a late-career highlight… [Crozier] can speak for the inanimate with whimsy and empathy, knows when and how to conjure sensuality, and can sneak in an emotional payload.”


Welcome to the Circus shortlisted for the ReLit Award

The “long shortlists” for the 2016 ReLit Awards — for Canada’s best independently published titles — were announced today, and Rhonda Douglas’s Welcome to the Circus finds itself in some nice company on the short fiction list! You can see the announcement and the shortlists here.


Perfect World audiobook available for preorder

An audiobook of Ian Colford’s novella Perfect World is available now for preorder from Audible and will be released on February 14. You can preorder the audiobook here.


Teardown reviewed in the Globe and Mail

Reviewer Steven W. Beattie calls Clea Young’s Teardown “impressive” and “accomplished,” reviewing it alongside Danila Botha’s For All the Men (and Some of the Women) I’ve Known. You can read the full review here.