February's Author of the Month: PETER MAY

by Tyler Vitt - Tuesday, Feb 02, 2016 at 1:29pm

Peter May is the multi award-winning author of the Lewis Trilogy set in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland; the China Thrillers, featuring Beijing detective Li Yan and American forensic pathologist Margaret Campbell; the Enzo Files which is set in France but features Scottish forensic scientist Enzo MacLeod; and several stand-alone books, including the multi award-winning Entry Island which he published in 2014. One of Scotland’s  most prolific television dramatists, May garnered more than 1000 credits in 15 years as scriptwriter and script editor on prime-time British television drama. He is the creator of three major television series and presided over two of the highest-rated serials in his homeland before quitting television to concentrate on his first love, writing novels.

His latest standalone is Runaway, a tense crime thriller spanning a half-century of friendships set against the backdrop of two unique cities, Glasgow and London, at two transformational periods of recent history. When five teenage boys leave their homes in Glasgow in 1965 and head for London to pursue fame and fortune as a band, they discover the reality to be devastatingly different from their dreams. Fifty years later a brutal murder forces three of the boys, now in their sixties, to return to London to confront the demons which have haunted them and blighted their lives for five decades.

(Runaway will be released on February 9th, 2016. Contact your nearest McNally Robinson to arrange a pre-order.)

Categories: Authors, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Author of the Month

The loss of a publishing giant

by Tyler Vitt - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2016 at 5:09pm

It’s with a heavy heart that we acknowledge the passing of Gordon Shillingford, founder and operator of J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing, a small house with a national impact.

Gord formed Blizzard Publishing alongside Peter Atwood in 1986, going solo in 1992 to start his own eponymous publishing house. Through its four house imprints, J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing encompassed poetry, theatre, Canadian social history, politics, religion, true crime, biography, and, of course, hockey.

He had a strong and stubborn enthusiasm for theatre, publishing many critically acclaimed dramas each year and regularly earning awards and nominations for those plays published through his Scirocco Drama imprint. His dedication to developing the next generation of Manitoba playwrights was made manifest through the Manitoba Association of Playwrights/Scirocco Drama Annual Highschool Playwriting Competition, founded in 2001. Canada’s theatre scene has lost a champion.

His poetry imprint, The Muses’ Company, put out scores of significant books including Katherena Vermette’s Governor General’s Award-winning collection North End Love Songs and works by Catherine Hunter, Lori Cayer, Rosanna Deerchild, Patrick O’Connell, Clarise Foster, George Amabile, Kenneth Radu, Kerry Ryan, Michelle Elrick, Patrick Friesen, Katherine Bitney, Sarah Klassen, and many others.

Gord brought a very particular passion and energy to every book he published and never put out anything he wasn’t entirely invested in. Not one to seek the spotlight, it’s been left to author after author to pay tribute to his dedication and relentless personal efforts on their behalf.

A long time friend of the store, Gord’s warm and pithy presence was a feature at many events and he was a regular visitor, schlepping in yet another box of books hot from the printer.

Our sincere condolences to Gord’s family and to his many friends and colleagues here in Winnipeg and across the country.

There was no one quite like Gord and he’ll be greatly missed.

(This piece written by our Winnipeg Events Coordinator, John Toews. Photo credit: Leif Norman.)

Categories: Winnipeg, Publishing News

Canada Reads 2016: Contenders

by Tyler Vitt - Friday, Jan 22, 2016 at 4:23pm

The 15th year of Canada Reads is upon us, bringing together books all about transformation and second chances. Recently CBC Radio unveiled the 2016 panel:

Profiles of each contender can be found on CBC Radio's website, and you can watch a video of the panel's introduction from CBC's q radio show.

The debates will take place on CBC Radio March 21st to the 24th, 2016, with author, broadcaster, and previous Canada Reads winner Wab Kinew returning as host.

Categories: Awards, Saskatoon, Winnipeg

January's Author of the Month: CHINA MIÉVILLE

by Tyler Vitt - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2015 at 3:54pm

China Miéville, whose works include Three Moments of an ExplosionThe City & The CityEmbassytownRailsea, and Perdido Street Station, is an award-winning English fantasy fiction writer. He is fond of describing his work as “weird fiction” (after early twentieth century pulp and horror writers such as H. P. Lovecraft), and belongs to a loose group of writers sometimes called New Weird who consciously attempt to move fantasy away from commercial clichés of the genre. He has stood for the House of Commons for the Socialist Alliance, and published a book on Marxism and international law. He teaches creative writing at Warwick University.

His new book, This Census-Taker, is a poignant and uncanny novella that opens in a remote house on a hilltop where a lonely boy witnesses a profoundly traumatic event. He tries, and fails, to flee. Left alone with his increasingly deranged parent, he dreams of safety, of joining the other children in the town below, of escape. When at last a stranger knocks at  his door, the boy senses that his days of isolation might be over. But by what authority does this man keep the meticulous records he carries? What is the purpose behind his questions? Is he friend? Enemy? Or something else altogether?

Categories: Authors, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Author of the Month

2015 Holiday Hours and Closures

by Tyler Vitt - Tuesday, Dec 01, 2015 at 12:05pm

Happy holidays!

Please note our special hours and closures in December:

Christmas Eve: open 9 am to 5 pm
Christmas Day: closed
Boxing Day, Grant Park: open 10 am to 6 pm
Boxing Day, Saskatoon: open 11 am to 6 pm

New Year's Eve: open 9 am to 5 pm
New Year's Day: closed

Otherwise, our hours of operation remain the same as ever.

Categories: Store News, Saskatoon, Winnipeg
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