Another Friday, another Roundup. Here we go:
|NEW RELEASES from the past seven days||BESTSELLERS b>|
|> Fiction books||> Winnipeg Bestsellers based on this week's sales|
|> Non-Fiction books||> Saskatoon Bestsellers based on last week's sales|
|< < < Some highlights of the week < < <|
|• New Releases: Ron Burgundy -- yes, the Ron Burgundy, of Anchorman fame -- came out with a new book this week: Let Me Off At The Top! The book is Mr. Burgundy's autobiography, and you may consider it Fictional Non-Fiction. (And have you seen the Ron Burgundy standee in our store? Classiness defined.)||• New Releases: The latest Walking Dead graphic novel, Volume 19, came out over the weekend. As you might've guessed, you can find this batch of zombie-goodness in our Graphic Novels section (or buy it right here on the website).|
|• Bestsellers: Remember my prediction about Katherina Vermette's North End Love Songs from last week's Roundup? Well, it came true! North End Love Songs is now #1 in Paperback Fiction on our Winnipeg bestsellers list.||• Bestsellers: Commander Chris Hadfield's An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth is staying strong at #1 on our Hardcover Non-Fiction bestsellers list. Frankly, I'm not surprised -- that book is simply out of this world! (Sorry.)|
|• Events/Bestsellers: Former Prime Minister (#16, if you're keeping track) Joe Clark was in our Winnipeg store on Wednesday to speak about his new book, How We Lead. There was a great audience in both terms of size and discussion, and Mr. Clark gave some great answers to some great questions. The event helped bring Mr. Clark's book up to #2 in Hardcover Non-Fiction bestsellers in Winnipeg.||• Literary News: The Top Ten for this year's Canada Reads contest have been announced. You can read more in an earlier article from our blog. The winner will be announced on November 27th, so stay tuned!|
|• Literary News: The winners of this year's National Book Awards have been announced. Read more here.||• Store News: Just a reminder about holiday orders: Get them in as soon as possible. There's still about a month until deadlines hit, but some orders take several weeks to arrive. So we urge you to contact us ASAP.|
|> > > Looking ahead... > > >|
|• Don't forget: Infamous Scottish author Ian Rankin will be coming to both of our stores this week. You can catch Mr. Rankin in Saskatoon on the 26th at 7:30 pm, and then in Winnipeg on the 29th at 7 pm. The event is free, and all are invited to attend.|
The winners of this year's National Book Awards have been announced. They are:
> James McBride for his novel The Good Lord Bird
> George Packer for his book The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America
> Mary Szybist for her collection Incarnadine: Poems
YOUNG PEOPLE'S LITERATURE
> Cynthia Kadohata for her book The Thing About Luck
Congratulations to all of the winners!
You can find out more about the National Book Awards, and see a complete listing of finalists, on the Awards' website. Contact your nearest McNally Robinson bookstore to check current availability of any of the titles above, or order right here on our website.Categories: Awards, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Publishing News
Sholem Aleichem is perhaps the most pre-eminent name in Yiddish literature, and among the immediate figures that come to mind in Jewish writing in general. Fiddler on the Roof, based on Sholem Aleichem's endeared Tevye the dairyman and the longest-running performance on Broadway, sealed the Yiddish writer's name in North American pop culture.
Dubbed the Jewish Mark Twain (Mark Twain would respond, calling himself the American Sholem Aleichem) and deemed "a worthy heir to Gogol," the iconic Yiddish author and his influence is explored in a new biography, The Worlds of Sholem Aleichem: The Remarkable Life and Afterlife of the Man Who Created Tevye by Jeremy Dauber.
Sholem Rabinovich was born in 1859 in Ukraine, at a time when the so-called Haskalah, the Jewish enlightenment, was growing and adversely altering the Yiddish-speaking world of Eastern Europe. The young Rabinovich aspired to be a writer, witnessed how a new body of literature and art was emerging in that "jargon" called Yiddish, and adopted the pen name Sholem Aleichem, a traditional greeting meaning "peace be upon you." He could have easily been one of the characters that shape his fiction, having come from an impoverished childhood, married into wealth, and lost everything.
Writing with a notion of "laughter through tears," Sholem Aleichem's works spoke to his Yiddish-speaking brethren, addressing the hardships and discrimination his people often faced in the old country, tales that came with a unique dash of humour, layered in critical thought and gems of wisdom. He was so popular that at one time he was writing simultaneous premieres for two competing Yiddish theatres in New York City. When he died in 1916, his funeral was one of the largest New York had ever seen. But the Sholem Aleichem story doesn't stop there. The biography looks at the amazing afterlife of Sholem Aleichem in English translation, and beyond.
The Worlds of Sholem Aleichem, hailed as the "first comprehensive biography" on the beloved author, is a finely-written work, illuminating a Yiddish-speaking world coloured in a certain joy, of course sorrow, and yet still touches so many Jewish North Americans. The book makes for a wonderful gift on the Hanukkah holiday.
Javier Marias' name is rarely mentioned without the possibility of a future Nobel Prize win being brought up soon after. Roberto Bolaņo called him "by far Spain's best writer today." So why is his name so obscure in North America? Anyone I know who has read him becomes a devoted follower and waits impatiently for the next book. Marias' work is unusual in that the novels aren't so much about what happens, although plenty may happen, but what is caused by those events. Two of his favourite themes are espionage and translation, and so not surprisingly miscommunications, misunderstandings, and questions of identity are often explored in his novels. Both spies and translators, along with a dose of the Spanish Civil War, are at play in what is probably his masterpiece, the three part trilogy Your Face Tomorrow, made up of the novels Fever and Spear, Dance and Dream, and Poison, Shadow, and Farewell. However, his latest novel, Infatuations, does not involve spies or translators. Nevertheless it explores similar possibilities for multiple perspectives and meanings that inhabit the space in between people. Not wanting to give too much away, let's just say that people meet, a man is killed, and then Marias teases out, sentence by sentence, how they respond. He is a master at dropping a metaphorical stone in the water and then playing out the subtle emotional and psychological ripples that result. I recommend him very highly.
—written by co-owner Chris Hall
Tsypkin worked as a pathologist in Soviet Russia. He was not considered a writer, merely indulging in the art after dark. There were no attempts at publishing the work in his own country. The narrative was too absurd and his accusations against the government too overt. Abandoning all hopes of publication, Tsypkin granted himself the ultimate freedom: to write and reach the centre. And the untimely centre is where he died. Luckily, his work survived with his son and was finally published twenty years after his death.
Mary Ruefle declares, "in the worst windstorms only the most delicate things survive." And how profoundly fragile these things are. Tsypkin's novel Summer in Baden-Baden is unlike anything I have ever read. He shatters all that I have learned about writing, personal and collective history. The novel opens with the narrator travelling to Leningrad by train to visit his aunt. In tandem, Fyodor and Anna Dostoevsky are departing for Germany. The narrator, a man twice denied permission to leave the Soviet Union, and Fyodor, the exiled writer, seem to share the same platform, a matching psychological interior. The narrator is dancing on the tightrope to infinity; he is Leonid and Fyodor and me and everybody that has ever dared to stick their head out of a window. The English translation of The Bridge over the Neroch and Other Works was released in early 2013. This collection appears to hold the last of his writing. With this last I too hope to reach the centre.
—written by bookseller Noor Bhangu
This article was adapted from the September/October edition of our newsletter, The Bookseller. You can access the full newsletter online by clicking here. Be sure to also check out our holiday catalogue, Books of the Season, available now online or in-store for free.Categories: Authors, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Literature
The Top Ten finalists for the 2014 Canada Reads competition have been announced, and they are:
• Anil's Ghost by Michael Ondaatje
• Annabel by Kathleen Winter
• Cockroach by Rawi Hage
• Half-Blood Blues by Esi Edugyan
• Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
• October 1970 by Louis Hamelin
• The Orenda by Joseph Boyden
• A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali by Gil Courtemanche
• What the Body Remembers by Shauna Singh Baldwin
• The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood
You can find more details on Canada Reads on their website. Chosen from the Top Ten, the Final Four will be announced on November 27th.Categories: Awards, Saskatoon, Winnipeg
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