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On Classic 107

Tune in to Morning Light with Michael Wolch on Classic 107 FM the first Friday of every month at 8:30 am and catch McNally Robinson co-owner Chris Hall as he shares his passion for good books of all kinds.

Here are Chris' recent Classic 107 selections.

As We Have Always Done

- Hardcover

by Leanne Betas Simpson - $34.95 - Add to Cart

Across North America, Indigenous acts of resistance have in recent years opposed the removal of federal protections for forests and waterways in Indigenous lands, halted the expansion of tar sands extraction and the pipeline construction at Standing Rock, and demanded justice for murdered and missing Indigenous women. In As We Have Always Done, Leanne Betasamosake Simpson locates Indigenous political resurgence as a practice rooted in uniquely Indigenous theorizing, writing, organizing, and thinking.Indigenous resistance is a radical rejection of contemporary colonialism focused around the refusal of the dispossession of both Indigenous bodies and land. Simpson makes clear that its goal can no longer be cultural resurgence as a mechanism for inclusion in a multicultural mosaic. Instead, she calls for unapologetic, place-based Indigenous alternatives to the destructive logics of the settler colonial state, including heteropatriarchy, white supremacy, and capitalist exploitation.

At the Strangers' Gate

- Hardcover

by Adam Gopnik - $34.00 - Add to Cart

A vivid memoir that captures the energy, ambition and romance of New York in the 1980s from the beloved New Yorker Canadian writer, to stand alongside his bestselling Paris to the Moon and Through the Children's Gate.When Adam Gopnik and his soon-to-be-wife, Martha Parker, left the comforts of home in Montreal for New York, the city then, much like today, was a pilgrimage site for the young and the arty and ambitious. But it was also becoming a city of greed, where both life's consolations and its necessities were increasingly going to the highest bidder. At the Stranger's Gate builds a portrait of this moment in New York through the story of their journey--from their excited arrival as aspiring artists to their eventual growth into a New York family. Gopnik transports us to their tiny basement room on the Upper East Side--the smallest apartment in Manhattan--and later to SoHo, where he captures a unicorn: an affordable New York loft. Between tender, laugh-out-loud reminiscences, including affectionate portraits of New York luminaries from Richard Avedon to Robert Hughes and Jeff Koons, Gopnik takes us into the corridors of Condé Nast, the galleries of MoMA and many places between to illuminate the fascinating world capital of creativity and aspiration that is New York, then and now.

Future Home of the Living God

- Trade paperback

by Louise Erdrich - $21.99 - Add to Cart

A New York Times Notable Book of 2017Louise Erdrich, the New York Times bestselling, National Book Award-winning author of LaRose and The Round House, paints a startling portrait of a young woman fighting for her life and her unborn child against oppressive forces that manifest in the wake of a cataclysmic event.The world as we know it is ending. Evolution has reversed itself, affecting every living creature on earth. Science cannot stop the world from running backwards, as woman after woman gives birth to infants that appear to be primitive species of humans. Twenty-six-year-old Cedar Hawk Songmaker, adopted daughter of a pair of big-hearted, open-minded Minneapolis liberals, is as disturbed and uncertain as the rest of America around her. But for Cedar, this change is profound and deeply personal. She is four months pregnant.Though she wants to tell the adoptive parents who raised her from infancy, Cedar first feels compelled to find her birth mother, Mary Potts, an Ojibwe living on the reservation, to understand both her and her baby's origins. As Cedar goes back to her own biological beginnings, society around her begins to disintegrate, fueled by a swelling panic about the end of humanity. There are rumors of martial law, of Congress confining pregnant women. Of a registry, and rewards for those who turn these wanted women in. Flickering through the chaos are signs of increasing repression: a shaken Cedar witnesses a family wrenched apart when police violently drag a mother from her husband and child in a parking lot. The streets of her neighborhood have been renamed with Bible verses. A stranger answers the phone when she calls her adoptive parents, who have vanished without a trace. It will take all Cedar has to avoid the prying eyes of potential informants and keep her baby safe. A chilling dystopian novel both provocative and prescient, Future Home of the Living God is a startlingly original work from one of our most acclaimed writers: a moving meditation on female agency, self-determination, biology, and natural rights that speaks to the troubling changes of our time.

Game Change

- Hardcover

by Ken Dryden - $32.00 - Add to Cart

Longlisted for the BC National Award for Canadian Non-FictionA Globe and Mail Best Book From the bestselling author and Hall of Famer Ken Dryden, this is the story of NHLer Steve Montador--who was diagnosed with CTE after his death in 2015--the remarkable evolution of hockey itself, and a passionate prescriptive to counter its greatest risk in the future: head injuries.   Ken Dryden's The Game is acknowledged as the best book about hockey, and one of the best books about sports ever written.  Then came Home Game (with Roy MacGregor), also a major TV-series, in which he explored hockey's significance and what it means to Canada and Canadians. Now, in his most powerful and important book yet, Game Change, Ken Dryden tells the riveting story of one player's life, examines the intersection between science and sport, and expertly documents the progression of the game of hockey--where it began, how it got to where it is, where it can go from here and, just as exciting to play and watch, how it can get there.

In Search of A Better World

- Trade paperback

by Payam Akhavan - $19.95 - Add to Cart

A work of memoir, history, and a call to action, In Search of a Better World, the 2017 CBC Massey Lecture, is a powerful and essential work on the major human rights struggles of our times.In February of 2017, Amnesty International released their Annual Report for 2016 to 2017, concluding that the "us versus them" rhetoric increasingly employed by politicians is endangering human rights the world over. Renowned UN prosecutor and human rights scholar Payam Akhavan has encountered the grim realities of contemporary genocide throughout his life and career. He argues that deceptive utopias, political cynicism, and public apathy have given rise to major human rights abuses: from the religious persecution of Iranian Bahá'ís that shaped his personal life, to the horrors of ethnic cleansing in Yugoslavia, the genocide in Rwanda, and the rise of contemporary phenomena such as the Islamic State. But he also reflects on the inspiring resilience of the human spirit and the reality of our inextricable interdependence to liberate us, whether from hateful ideologies that deny the humanity of others or an empty consumerist culture that worships greed and self-indulgence.A timely, essential, and passionate work of memoir and history, In Search of a Better World is a tour de force by an internationally renowned human rights lawyer.

The Inner Life of Animals

- Hardcover

by Peter Wohlleben - $29.95 - Add to Cart

"Like The Hidden Life of Trees, Peter Wohlleben's The Inner Life of Animals will rock your world. Surprising, humbling, and filled with delight, this book shows us that animals think, feel and know in much the same way as we do--and that their lives are, to them, as precious as ours are to us."--Sy Montgomery, author of The Soul of an OctopusThrough vivid stories of devoted pigs, two-timing magpies, and scheming roosters, The Inner Life of Animals weaves the latest scientific research into how animals interact with the world with Peter Wohlleben's personal experiences in forests and fields.Horses feel shame, deer grieve, and goats discipline their kids. Ravens call their friends by name, rats regret bad choices, and butterflies choose the very best places for their children to grow up.In this, his latest book, Peter Wohlleben follows the hugely successful The Hidden Life of Trees with insightful stories into the emotions, feelings, and intelligence of animals around us. Animals are different from us in ways that amaze us--and they are also much closer to us than we ever would have thought.Published in partnership with the David Suzuki Institute.

The Inviting Life

- Hardcover

by Laura Calder - $30.00 - Add to Cart

Far more than a guide to homemaking and being a fine host--although it is definitely all that too--The Inviting Life is about how to live each day with a desire and determination to turn the ordinary into something lovely. It's also a book about why we should bother. Whether the subject is décor, ambience, shopping, feeding weary travellers, mixing cocktails, planning dinner parties, or getting yourself motivated for spring cleaning, Laura Calder affirms the value of our everyday activities and shows how beauty, creativity, and delight have the power to change the world. This one-of-a-kind book is both a page-turning narrative about Laura's own hosting and home-making adventures and an invaluable work of reference. It's a spur to ideas for everything from creating a welcoming living space and making a respectable salad, to putting guests at their ease and writing a thank-you note worth receiving. Written with candour and humour in Laura's inimitable and engaging voice, The Inviting Life offers empowering guidance for anyone looking to take more pleasure in their life and home.

Leonardo da Vinci

- Hardcover

by Walter Isaacson - $45.00 - Add to Cart

The #1 New York Times bestseller "A powerful story of an exhilarating mind and life...a study in creativity: how to define it, how to achieve it." --The New Yorker "Vigorous, insightful." --The Washington Post "A masterpiece." --San Francisco Chronicle "Luminous." --The Daily Beast He was history's most creative genius. What secrets can he teach us? The author of the acclaimed bestsellers Steve Jobs, Einstein, and Benjamin Franklin brings Leonardo da Vinci to life in this exciting new biography.Based on thousands of pages from Leonardo's astonishing notebooks and new discoveries about his life and work, Walter Isaacson weaves a narrative that connects his art to his science. He shows how Leonardo's genius was based on skills we can improve in ourselves, such as passionate curiosity, careful observation, and an imagination so playful that it flirted with fantasy. He produced the two most famous paintings in history, The Last Supper and the Mona Lisa. But in his own mind, he was just as much a man of science and technology. With a passion that sometimes became obsessive, he pursued innovative studies of anatomy, fossils, birds, the heart, flying machines, botany, geology, and weaponry. His ability to stand at the crossroads of the humanities and the sciences, made iconic by his drawing of Vitruvian Man, made him history's most creative genius. His creativity, like that of other great innovators, came from having wide-ranging passions. He peeled flesh off the faces of cadavers, drew the muscles that move the lips, and then painted history's most memorable smile. He explored the math of optics, showed how light rays strike the cornea, and produced illusions of changing perspectives in The Last Supper. Isaacson also describes how Leonardo's lifelong enthusiasm for staging theatrical productions informed his paintings and inventions. Leonardo's delight at combining diverse passions remains the ultimate recipe for creativity. So, too, does his ease at being a bit of a misfit: illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, easily distracted, and at times heretical. His life should remind us of the importance of instilling, both in ourselves and our children, not just received knowledge but a willingness to question it--to be imaginative and, like talented misfits and rebels in any era, to think different.

A Newfoundlander in Canada

- Hardcover

by Alan Doyle - $32.95 - Add to Cart

Following the fantastic success of his bestselling memoir, Where I Belong, Great Big Sea front man Alan Doyle returns with a hilarious, heartwarming account of leaving Newfoundland and discovering Canada for the first time.Armed with the same personable, candid style found in his first book, Alan Doyle turns his perspective outward from Petty Harbour toward mainland Canada, reflecting on what it was like to venture away from the comforts of home and the familiarity of the island.     Often in a van, sometimes in a bus, occasionally in a car with broken wipers "using Bob's belt and a rope found by Paddy's Pond" to pull them back and forth, Alan and his bandmates charted new territory, and he constantly measured what he saw of the vast country against what his forefathers once called the Daemon Canada. In a period punctuated by triumphant leaps forward for the band, deflating steps backward and everything in between--opening for Barney the Dinosaur at an outdoor music festival, being propositioned at a gas station mail-order bride service in Alberta, drinking moonshine with an elderly church-goer on a Sunday morning in PEI--Alan's few established notions about Canada were often debunked and his own identity as a Newfoundlander was constantly challenged. Touring the country, he also discovered how others view Newfoundlanders and how skewed these images can sometimes be. Asked to play in front of the Queen at a massive Canada Day festival on Parliament Hill, the concert organizers assured Alan and his bandmates that the best way to showcase Newfoundland culture was for them to be towed onto stage in a dory and introduced not as Newfoundlanders but as "Newfies." The boys were not amused.     Heartfelt, funny and always insightful, these stories tap into the complexities of community and Canadianness, forming the portrait of a young man from a tiny fishing village trying to define and hold on to his sense of home while navigating a vast and diverse and wonder-filled country.

Once More with Feeling

- Trade paperback

by Meira Cook - $22.95 - Add to Cart

After twenty years Max Binder is still in love with his fiery wife, Maggie, and is determined to get her the perfect fortieth birthday gift. But Max's singular desire -- to make his wife happy -- leads to an unexpected event that changes the course of his family's life and touches the people who make up their western prairie city.Set over the course of a single year, Once More With Feeling tells the story of a community through intersecting moments and interconnected lives. The colourful citizens who make up this city -- bisected by railway lines and rivers, connected by boulevards and back alleys -- are marked by transformation, upheaval, and loss: the worker at a downtown soup kitchen who recognizes a kindred spirit amongst the homeless; the aging sisters who everywhere see the fleeting ghosts of two missing neighbourhood children; a communal voice of mothers anxious for the future of their children in the discomfiting world they inhabit -- this place of memory, amnesia, longing, and belonging.Featuring a cast of eclectic characters, Once More With Feeling is about a community, about a family, and about the way time makes fond fools of us all. Award-winning author Méira Cook has crafted a novel that is at once funny, poignant, and yes, full of feeling.

Red Famine

- Hardcover

by Anne Applebaum - $42.00 - Add to Cart

From the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Gulag and Iron Curtain, winner of the Cundill Prize and a finalist for the National Book Award, a revelatory history of Stalin's greatest crime.In 1929, Stalin launched his policy of agricultural collectivization -- in effect a second Russian revolution -- which forced millions of peasants off their land and onto collective farms. The result was a catastrophic famine, the most lethal in European history. At least five million people perished between 1931 and 1933 in the U.S.S.R. In Red Famine, Anne Applebaum reveals for the first time that three million of them died not because they were accidental victims of a bad policy, but because the state deliberately set out to kill them. Applebaum proves what has long been suspected: that Stalin set out to exterminate a vast swath of the Ukrainian population and replace them with more cooperative, Russian-speaking peasants. A peaceful Ukraine would provide the Soviets with a safe buffer between itself and Europe, and would be a bread basket region to feed Soviet cities and factory workers.      When the province rebelled against collectivization, Stalin sealed the borders and began systematic food seizures. Starving, people ate anything: grass, tree bark, dogs, corpses. In some cases they killed one another for food. Devastating and definitive, Red Famine captures the horror of ordinary people struggling to survive extraordinary evil.

Runaway Wives and Rogue Feminists

- Trade paperback

by Margo Goodhand - $20.00 - Add to Cart

In the supposedly enlightened '60s and '70s, violence against women was widespread. It wasn't talked about, and women had few, if any, options to escape their abusers. Yet in 1973 -- with no statistics, no money and little public support -- five disparate groups of Canadian women quietly opened Canada's first battered women's shelters. Today, there are well over 600. In Runaway Wives and Rogue Feminists, journalist Margo Goodhand tracks down the "rogue feminists" whose work forged an underground railway for women and children, weaving their stories into an unforgettable -- and until now untold -- history. As they lobbied for funding, scrounged for furniture and fended off outraged husbands, these women marked a defining moment in Canadian history, triggering monumental changes in government, schools, courts and law enforcement. But was it enough to stop the cycle of violence? Forty years later, these pioneers describe how and why Canada has lost its ground in the battle for women's rights.

The Shoe on the Roof

- Hardcover

by Will Ferguson - $32.00 - Add to Cart

Imagine...meeting someone with the same name, the same history, the same family, the same identity as you. Now, imagine meeting another person making the same exact claim. What would that do to you? From the Giller Prize-winning novelist of 419 comes the startling, funny, and heartbreaking story of a psychological experiment gone wrong.Ever since his girlfriend ended their relationship, Thomas Rosanoff's life has been on a downward spiral. A gifted med student, he has spent his entire adulthood struggling to escape the legacy of his father, an esteemed psychiatrist who used him as a test subject when he was a boy. Thomas lived his entire young life as the "Boy in the Box," watched by researchers behind two-way glass. But now the tables have turned. Thomas is the researcher, and his subjects are three homeless men, all of whom claim to be messiahs--but no three people can be the one and only saviour of the world. Thomas is determined to "cure" the three men of their delusions, and in so doing save his career--and maybe even his love life. But when Thomas's father intervenes in the experiment, events spin out of control, and Thomas must confront the voices he hears in the labyrinth of his own mind. The Shoe on the Roof is an explosively imaginative tour de force, a novel that questions our definitions of sanity and madness, while exploring the magical reality that lies just beyond the world of scientific fact.

Stuck in the Middle 2

- Trade paperback

by Bartley Kives - $35.00 - Add to Cart

Somewhere between North Dakota and Nunavut sits a curious land with a coastline patrolled by polar bears, highways lined with monuments to household produce and dinner plates drenched in a gluey condiment known as honey dill sauce. This is Manitoba, a province that has captured the imagination of ... well, maybe dozens of people around the world for more than a century. To many Canadians, Manitoba is nothing but canola, snow and mosquitoes. To people in Winnipeg, its capital and largest city, it's that place where the flood happens three out of every five years. So what exactly is Manitoba? It's one of the newest places on Earth, carved by glaciers and shaped by meltwater. It's one of the most Indigenous places on Earth, as all of its residents are beginning to comprehend and respect. But it's also a vast and largely empty land that lacks a singular identity, partly because of its vastness and emptiness - but also because most of its population barricades itself within Winnipeg's city limits. Stuck In The Middle: Defining Views of Manitoba finds photographer Bryan Scott and journalist Bartley Kives venturing beyond the Perimeter Highway to explore the architecture, landscapes and waterways of a province they know and love but will never truly understand. Armed with passionate ambivalence and an unwavering commitment to equivocation, Scott and Kives paint a perfectly imprecise picture of Manitoba for the rest of the planet to appreciate and revile and ultimately ignore.  The sequel to Stuck in the Middle: Dissenting Views of Winnipeg

Swing Time

- Trade paperback

by Zadie Smith - $22.00 - Add to Cart

A New York Times bestseller Finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for FictionFinalist for the L.A. Times Book Prize for FictionAn ambitious, exuberant new novel moving from northwest London to West Africa, from the multi-award-winning author of White Teeth and On BeautyTwo brown girls dream of being dancers--but only one, Tracey, has talent. The other has ideas: about rhythm and time, about black bodies and black music, about what constitutes a tribe, or makes a person truly free. It's a close but complicated childhood friendship that ends abruptly in their early twenties, never to be revisited, but never quite forgotten, either.     Dazzlingly energetic and deeply human, Swing Time is a story about friendship and music and stubborn roots, about how we are shaped by these things and how we can survive them. Moving from northwest London to West Africa, it is an exuberant dance to the music of time.