I Read Canadian
As a Canadian-owned and operated company, McNally Robinson has always put a special emphasis on Canadian authors and their books. Featured here are some of our booksellers' favourite Canadian books.
- by Catherine Hernandez
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A NOW Magazine Best Book of the Year
A CBC Books Best Canadian Fiction of the Year
A Maclean's 20 Books You Need to Read This Winter
The author of the acclaimed novel Scarborough weaves an unforgettable and timely dystopian account of a near-future when a queer Black performer and his allies join forces against an oppressive regime that is rounding up those deemed "Other" in concentration camps. In a terrifyingly familiar near-future, with massive floods that lead to rampant homelessness and devastation, a government-sanctioned regime called the Boots seizes the opportunity to force communities of colour, the disabled and the LGBTQ2S into labour camps in the city of Toronto.
In the shadows, a new hero emerges. After his livelihood and the love of his life are taken away, Kay joins the resistance alongside Bahadur, a transmasculine refugee, and Firuzeh, a headstrong social worker. Guiding them in the use of weapons and close-quarters combat is Beck, a rogue army officer who helps them plan an uprising at a major internationally televised event.
With her signature prose, described by Booklist as "raw yet beautiful, disturbing yet hopeful," Catherine Hernandez creates a vision of the future that is all the more terrifying because it is very possible. A cautionary tale filled with fierce and vibrant characters, Crosshairs explores the universal desire to thrive, to love and to be loved as your true self.
- by Will Ferguson
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From the Scotiabank Giller Prize-winning novelist of 419 comes a spellbinding literary adventure novel about precious objects lost and found.
The world is filled with wonders, lost objects--all real--all still out there, waiting to be found:
· the missing Fabergé eggs of the Romanov dynasty, worth millions
· the last reel of Alfred Hitchcock's first film
· Buddy Holly's iconic glasses
· Muhammad Ali's Olympic gold medal
How can such cherished objects simply vanish? Where are they hiding? And who on earth might be compelled to uncover them?
Will Ferguson takes readers on a heroic, imaginative journey across continents, from the seas of southern Japan, to the arid Australian Outback, to the city of Christchurch, New Zealand, after the earthquake. Prepare to meet Gaddy Rhodes, a brittle Interpol agent obsessed with tracking "The Finder"--a shadowy figure she believes is collecting lost objects; Thomas Rafferty, a burnt-out travel writer whose path crosses that of The Finder, to devastating effect; and Tamsin Greene, a swaggering war photographer who is hiding secrets of her own.
The Finder is a beguiling and wildly original tale about the people, places, and things that are lost and found in our world. Both an epic literary adventure and an escape into a darkly thrilling world of deceit and its rewards, this novel asks: How far would you be willing to go to recover the things you've left behind?
- by Andrew Unger
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Timothy Heppner is a frustrated ghostwriter struggling to make ends meet in Edenfeld, a small Mennonite community bulldozing its way towards modernity--if it's old, it has to go!
A member of the Preservation Society but desperate to keep his job with the mayor's Parks and "Wreck" department, Timothy finds himself in an awkward position when he is hired to write an updated version of the town's history book. Fuelled by warring loyalties, the threat of personal bankruptcy, and a good deal of fried bologna, Timothy must find his own voice to tell the one story that could make--or break--him.
Honest and laugh-out-loud funny, Once Removed explores the real costs of "progress" in this new Canadian classic.
- by Margaret Atwood
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WINNER OF THE BOOKER PRIZE
LONGLISTED FOR THE SCOTIABANK GILLER PRIZE
Margaret Atwood's dystopian masterpiece, The Handmaid's Tale, has become a modern classic--and now she brings the iconic story to a dramatic conclusion in this riveting sequel.
More than fifteen years after the events of The Handmaid's Tale, the theocratic regime of the Republic of Gilead maintains its grip on power, but there are signs it is beginning to rot from within. At this crucial moment, the lives of three radically different women converge, with potentially explosive results.
Two have grown up as part of the first generation to come of age in the new order. The testimonies of these two young women are joined by a third voice: a woman who wields power through the ruthless accumulation and deployment of secrets.
As Atwood unfolds The Testaments, she opens up the innermost workings of Gilead as each woman is forced to come to terms with who she is, and how far she will go for what she believes.
"The literary event of the year." --The Guardian
"The international literary event of the season." --Globe and Mail
"It's terrifying and exhilarating." --Judges of the Booker Prize 2019
- by Thomas King
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A #1 Indie bestseller and a Canadian bestseller for 22 weeks, the brilliant latest novel from one of Canada's foremost authors
Inspired by a handful of postcards sent nearly a hundred years ago, Bird and Mimi attempt to trace long-lost uncle Leroy and the family medicine bundle he took with him to Europe.
"I'm sweaty and sticky. My ears are still popping from the descent into Vaclav Havel. My sinuses ache. My stomach is upset. My mouth is a sewer. I roll over and bury my face in a pillow. Mimi snuggles down beside me with no regard for my distress.
'My god,' she whispers, 'can it get any better?'"
By turns witty, sly and poignant, this is the unforgettable tale of one couple's holiday in Europe, where their wanderings through its famous capitals reveal a complicated history, both personal and political.
- by Louise Penny
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INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
PARADE MAGAZINE - ONE OF FALL'S MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS
AARP'S MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS OF FALL
CRIMEREADS - ONE OF THE BEST TRADITIONAL MYSTERIES OF THE YEAR
GLOBE AND MAIL - TOP 100 BOOKS OF THE YEAR
CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR - ONE OF THE BEST NOVELS OF THE YEAR
KIRKUS REVIEWS - ONE OF THE BEST MYSTERIES/THRILLERS OF THE YEAR
LIBRARY JOURNAL - ONE OF THE BEST CRIME FICTION BOOKS OF THE YEAR
The 16th novel by #1 bestselling author Louise Penny finds Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Quebec investigating a sinister plot in the City of Light
On their first night in Paris, the Gamaches gather as a family for a bistro dinner with Armand's godfather, the billionaire Stephen Horowitz. Walking home together after the meal, they watch in horror as Stephen is knocked down and critically injured in what Gamache knows is no accident, but a deliberate attempt on the elderly man's life.
When a strange key is found in Stephen's possession it sends Armand, his wife Reine-Marie, and his former second-in-command at the Sûreté, Jean-Guy Beauvoir, from the top of the Tour d'Eiffel, to the bowels of the Paris Archives, from luxury hotels to odd, coded, works of art.
It sends them deep into the secrets Armand's godfather has kept for decades.
A gruesome discovery in Stephen's Paris apartment makes it clear the secrets are more rancid, the danger far greater and more imminent, than they realized.
Soon the whole family is caught up in a web of lies and deceit. In order to find the truth, Gamache will have to decide whether he can trust his friends, his colleagues, his instincts, his own past. His own family.
For even the City of Light casts long shadows. And in that darkness devils hide.
- by Hayley Gene Penner
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"A journey down the rabbit hole of LA's most subtly toxic industry ... funny, brilliant, coy, playful, and wise." -- LENA DUNHAM, author of Not That Kind of Girl
Musician Hayley Gene Penner tells all in this harrowingly honest memoir.
Singer-songwriter Hayley Gene Penner's memoir takes a brutally honest yet humorous look at the dark, intimate truths we spend our lives running from. Like a map of beautiful mistakes, Hayley's stories of questionable sexual encounters, artistic aspirations, and emotional abuse trace her coming of age in the music industry.
Hayley explores all her relationships -- from her childhood as the daughter of a celebrity, to the destructive and coercive relationship with her boss, to her encounter with the actor we all know but who mustn't be named -- and brings them together in a series of sharp, touching vignettes. People You Follow straddles the delicate boundary between ethical and unethical behaviour, self-protection and self-destruction, power and weakness, giddiness and despair.
- by Frances Itani
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On Tuesday nights in the backroom of Cassie's café, six strangers seek solace and find themselves part of a "Company of Good Cheer" Hazzley is at loose ends, even three years after the death of her husband. When her longtime friend Cassandra, café owner and occasional dance-class partner, suggests that she start up a conversation group, Hazzley posts a notice on the community board at the local grocery store. Four people turn up for the first meeting: Gwen, a recently widowed retiree in her early sixties, who finds herself pet-sitting a cantankerous parrot; Chiyo, a forty-year-old fitness instructor who cared for her unyielding but gossip-loving mother through the final days of her life; Addie, a woman pre-emptively grieving a close friend who is seriously ill; and Tom, an antiques dealer and amateur poet who, deprived of home baking since becoming a widower, comes to the first meeting hoping cake will be served. Before long, they are joined by Allam, a Syrian refugee with his own story to tell. These six strangers are learning that beginnings can be possible at any stage of life. But as they tell their stories, they must navigate what is shared and what is withheld. Which version of the truth will be revealed? Who is prepared to step up when help is needed? This moving, funny and deeply empathic new novel from acclaimed author Frances Itani reminds us that life, with all its twists and turns, never loses its capacity to surprise.
- by Craig Davidson
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From the bestselling author of The Saturday Night Ghost Club and Canada Reads-finalist Precious Cargo comes this supremely satisfying collection of stories.
Reminiscent of Stephen King's brilliantly cinematic short stories that went on to inspire films such as The Shawshank Redemption and Stand by Me, here's a collection crackling with Craig Davidson's superb craft and kinetic energy: in the visceral, crystalline, steel-tipped prose; in the psychological perspicacity; and in the endearing humour.
Set in in the Niagara Falls of Davidson's imagination known as "Cataract City," the superb stories of Cascade shine a shimmering light on this slightly seedy, slightly magical, slightly haunted place. The six gems in this collection each illuminate familial relationships in a singular way: A mother and her infant son fight to survive a car-crash in a remote wintry landscape outside of town. Fraternal twins at a juvenile detention center reach a dangerous crisis point in their entwined lives. A pregnant social worker grapples with the prospect of parenthood as a custody case takes a dire turn. A hard-boiled ex-firefighter goes after a serial arsonist with a flair for the theatrical even as his own troubled sister is drawn towards the flames. These are just some of the unforgettable characters animating this stellar collection of tales--Davidson's first in 15 years, since Rust and Bone, which inspired a Golden Globe-nominated film.
- by Helen Humphreys
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A lonely boy in a prairie town befriends a local outsider in 1947 and then witnesses a shocking murder. Based on a true story. Canwood, Saskatchewan, 1947. Leonard Flint, a lonely boy in a small farming town befriends the local outsider, a man known as Rabbit Foot Bill. Bill doesn't talk much, but he allows Leonard to accompany him as he sets rabbit snares and to visit his small, secluded dwelling. Being with Bill is everything to young Leonard--an escape from school, bullies and a hard father. So his shock is absolute when he witnesses Bill commit a sudden violent act and loses him to prison. Fifteen years on, as a newly graduated doctor of psychiatry, Leonard arrives at the Weyburn Mental Hospital, both excited and intimidated by the massive institution known for its experimental LSD trials. To Leonard's great surprise, at the Weyburn he is reunited with Bill and soon becomes fixated on discovering what happened on that fateful day in 1947. Based on a true story, this page-turning novel from a master stylist examines the frailty and resilience of the human mind.
- by Ian Hamilton
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In the latest thrilling novel in the Ava Lee series, Ava launches an investigation into a fraudulent investment scheme that sends her around the globe on the trail of illegal diamonds, drug smuggling, and offshore banking.Ava and Pang Fai are in Toronto to attend a party at the home of Ava's mother, Jennie Lee. When Ava's best friend, Mimi, fails to appear, Ava goes looking for her. She finds Mimi at home, distraught over the death of her father, who has taken his own life after losing the family's savings in a fraudulent investment scheme. Moved to avenge this tragedy and recover the stolen money, Ava launches an investigation that takes her to cities on three continents.As she tracks the money, Ava is thrust into the underworld of illegal diamond trading, international drug smuggling, and the world's most secretive offshore banking haven. Along the way, a number of Ava's old friends offer their assistance--from her business partner, May Ling Wong, to her ge ge, the Mountain Master of Shanghai, Xu. Most poignant of all, Ava is visited in her dreams by Uncle, who offers her much-needed guidance as she confronts a new face of power and corruption.
- by Louise Penny
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"A Better Man, with its mix of meteorological suspense, psychological insight and criminal pursuit, is arguably the best book yet in an outstanding, original oeuvre."--Tom Nolan, The Wall Street Journal
"Enchanting... one of his most ennobling missions."--Marilyn Stasio, New York Times Book Review
Catastrophic spring flooding, blistering attacks in the media, and a mysterious disappearance greet Chief Inspector Armand Gamache as he returns to the Sûreté du Québec in the latest novel by #1 New York Times bestselling author Louise Penny.
It's Gamache's first day back as head of the homicide department, a job he temporarily shares with his previous second-in-command, Jean-Guy Beauvoir. Flood waters are rising across the province. In the middle of the turmoil a father approaches Gamache, pleading for help in finding his daughter.
As crisis piles upon crisis, Gamache tries to hold off the encroaching chaos, and realizes the search for Vivienne Godin should be abandoned. But with a daughter of his own, he finds himself developing a profound, and perhaps unwise, empathy for her distraught father.
Increasingly hounded by the question, how would you feel..., he resumes the search.
As the rivers rise, and the social media onslaught against Gamache becomes crueler, a body is discovered. And in the tumult, mistakes are made.
In the next novel in this "constantly surprising series that deepens and darkens as it evolves" (New York Times Book Review), Gamache must face a horrific possibility, and a burning question.
What would you do if your child's killer walked free?
- by Michelle Good
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Finalist Writers' Trust Fiction Prize
Scotiabank Giller Prize Longlist
A Globe and Mail Top 100 Book of the Year
A CBC Best Book of the Year
An Apple Best Book of the Year
A Kobo Best Book of the Year An Indigo Best Book of the Year Taken from their families when they are very small and sent to a remote, church-run residential school, Kenny, Lucy, Clara, Howie and Maisie are barely out of childhood when they are finally released after years of detention. Alone and without any skills, support or families, the teens find their way to the seedy and foreign world of Downtown Eastside Vancouver, where they cling together, striving to find a place of safety and belonging in a world that doesn't want them. The paths of the five friends cross and crisscross over the decades as they struggle to overcome, or at least forget, the trauma they endured during their years at the Mission. Fuelled by rage and furious with God, Clara finds her way into the dangerous, highly charged world of the American Indian Movement. Maisie internalizes her pain and continually places herself in dangerous situations. Famous for his daring escapes from the school, Kenny can't stop running and moves restlessly from job to job--through fishing grounds, orchards and logging camps--trying to outrun his memories and his addiction. Lucy finds peace in motherhood and nurtures a secret compulsive disorder as she waits for Kenny to return to the life they once hoped to share together. After almost beating one of his tormentors to death, Howie serves time in prison, then tries once again to re-enter society and begin life anew. With compassion and insight, Five Little Indians chronicles the desperate quest of these residential school survivors to come to terms with their past and, ultimately, find a way forward.
- by David Bergen
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SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2020 SCOTIABANK GILLER PRIZE o A NEW YORK TIMES NEW & NOTEWORTHY BOOK o A GLOBE AND MAIL TOP 100 BOOK FOR 2020 o A CBC BEST FICTION BOOK FOR 2020 o "His third appearance on the Giller shortlist ... affirms Bergen among Canada's most powerful writers. His pages light up; all around falls into darkness."--2020 Scotiabank Giller Prize Jury o "David Bergen's command is breathtaking ... His work belongs to the world, and to all time. He is one of our living greats."--Matthew Thomas, New York Times-bestselling author of We Are Not Ourselves From the streets of Danang, Vietnam, where a boy falls in with a young American missionary, to fishermen lost off the islands of Honduras, to the Canadian prairies, where a teenage boy's infatuation reveals his naiveté and an aging rancher finds himself smitten, the short stories in Here the Dark explore the spaces between doubt and belief, evil and good, obscurity and light. Following men and boys bewildered by their circumstances and swayed by desire, surprised by love and by their capacity for both tenderness and violence, and featuring a novella about a young woman who rejects the laws of her cloistered Mennonite community, Scotiabank Giller Prize-winner David Bergen's latest deftly renders complex moral ambiguities and asks what it means to be lost--and how we might be found.