THE SISTERS BROTHERS by Patrick DeWitt has gone on to sell over 150,000 copies in Canada alone since its release in 2011. And all attention is justified. The book follows the story of two brothers and their journey to California during the gold rush, and it is as funny as it is engrossing. DeWitt captured the oft-times wacky relationship between these two brothers as well as informing readers about the dangerous gold rush period. This is a contemporary western, worthy of all of the awards and accolades it received…and now it’s going to be a movie!

I’m reserving my seats now!


Forest of Reading™ Winners!

Last week, the winners for Forest of Reading were announced in Toronto. While our readers picked some of these, a few were surprises (although every single winning book was fantastic)! And the winners were…….

Blue Spruce:

Silver Birch Express:

Silver Birch Fiction:

Silver Birch Non-Fiction:

Red Maple:

Congratulations to all the authors and illustrators who won! We can’t wait until next year!

Are You Watching?

Last week, a patron came in looking for one of the books in the Canada Reads 2018 competition, namely THE MARROW THIEVES by Cherie Dimaline. We were talking about how this Young Adult book is marketed as a dystopian novel–something we think of when we see books like THE HUNGER GAMES and DIVERGENT–but not so much when we see a Canadian book with Indigenous characters.

After discussing the plot and the setting for a few moments, we both realized that the idea of “dystopian”–a book that takes place in a difficult setting and time, often with reference to a government that doesn’t understand or want to help the people, and characters who must fight for everything they achieve—is exactly what many indigenous young adults must feel about their lives.

A YA book is often on the lists these days for Canada Reads, and that’s another important step for readers. Not only are they exposed to new ideas and styles of writing, but they might realize that YA books are not just for teens. Dimaline herself states that she wrote the book for three different audiences– Indigenous youth, diverse youth, and people who are interested in change.

Will this book win? You can follow all of the daily happenings with the Canada Reads debates on their website here.

Freedom to Read Week

In Canada, it’s Freedom to Read Week, which is similar to Banned Books week in the US. This week, we’re all about celebrating books that might not be easy for everyone to digest, but books that we should all be free to read. It’s about intellectual freedom, something we all deserve.

And earlier this week, it was announced that author Gary Geddes has won the 2018 Freedom to Read award for his work in support of freedom of expression. Geddes is the author of such books as DRINK THE BITTER ROOT: A SEARCH FOR JUSTICE AND HEALING IN AFRICA, and MEDICINE UNBUNDLED. Geddes is a poet, writer of fiction and non-fiction, and has a huge body of work that continues to challenge readers with its varied subject matter and delivery.

You can read more about the award, and about Geddes on the CBC website right here.

Featured Forest Reader

Our first featured Forest Reader is Aurora Gibbons. She chose THE DARKEST DARK by Chris Hadfield as her favourite Blue Spruce book so far. And now she’s well on her way to reading all ten books in her category.

If you have a young reader who would like to be a Featured Forest Reader, drop into the library to fill out a questionnaire when it’s time for a new book. We want to know what everyone is enjoying so far! It’s going to be a difficult choice this year, as all of the books are so good!

Keep reading…we’re not voting until April 19th….

Best Books of 2017








It’s that time of year again….the best books of the year are being announced—and debated.

According to Publishers Weekly, the best piece of fiction this year was Hari Kunzru’s WHITE TEARS. But Indigo books though Angie Thomas’ YA book, THE HATE YOU GIVE, was more deserving of praise. I guess it depends on the type of books you read, and how extensive your reading list was this year.

Here are the listings for the Publishers Weekly winners, followed by the Indigo picks:

White Tears
, Hari Kunzru (Knopf)
Ill Will, Dan Chaon (Ballantine)
In the Distance, Hernán Díaz (Coffee House)
Grief Cottage, Gail Godwin (Bloomsbury)
Sing, Unburied, Sing, Jesmyn Ward (Scribner)

Ants Among Elephants: An Untouchable Family and the Making of Modern India, Sujatha Gidla (FSG)
The Apparitionists: A Tale of Phantoms, Fraud, Photography, and the Man Who Captured Lincoln’s Ghost, Peter Manseau (HMH)
The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America, Richard Rothstein (Liveright)
Extreme Cities: The Perils and Promise of Urban Life in the Age of Climate Change, Ashley Dawson (Verso)
Fear City: New York’s Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics, Kim Phillips-Fein (Metropolitan)

The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas (Balzer & Bray)
The Sun & Her Flowers, by Rupi Kaur (Andrews McMeel)
Beartown, by Fredrik Backman (Atria)
The Lonely Hearts Hotel, by Heather O’Neill (Riverhead)
Ranger Games: A Story of Soldiers, Family and an Inexplicable Crime, by Ben Blum (Doubleday)
Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy, by Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant (Knopf)
The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of The Last True Hermit, by Michael Finkel (Knopf)
Hunger, by Roxane Gay (Harper)
The Child Finder, by Rene Denfeld (Harper)
Norse Mythology, by Neil Gaiman (Norton)

Are these the best books of the year? What do YOU think? Let us know in the comments!

Man Booker Short List Announced

One of the most important literary awards celebrating the English language, the Man Booker Prize, has just announced their short list for 2017. The list consists of six titles, from authors all over the world, and surprisingly, doesn’t include many of the other big award winners of 2017.

The nominees include:

4 3 2 1,  Paul Auster, January 31, 2017, Macmillan/Henry Holt and Co.; Trade pbk, Picador, February 6, 2018 — U.S.


History of Wolves, Emily Fridlund, January 3, 2017, Atlantic Monthly Press; Trade pbk, Grove Press, November 7, 2017 — U.S, debut authorTr


Exit West, Mohsin Hamid, Riverhead Books, March 7, 2017; Trade pbk, March 6, 2018 — UK/Pakistan


Elmet, Fiona Mozley, No US publisher announced yet. UK publisher is Hodder & Stoughton — UK. A first novel, this one is considered a wild card.


Lincoln in the Bardo, George Saunders, February 14, 2017, Random House; Random House Trade Paperback, February 6, 2018 — US


Autumn, Ali Smith, February 7, 2017, PRH/Pantheon; Trade pbk, PRH/Anchor, October 31, 2017 — Scotland

Who will win? The award will be announced on October 17, 2017.