Thursday, May 27, 2010


Virtual Festival

The second recording in our newly launched series of archived events from Festivals-past features Tomson Highway. In a 2003 appearance at the Festival Canadian Cree writer and playwright Tomson Highway was the embodiment of trickster from myth and legend. And then he played the piano.

A Dram Come True
Chat with scotch experts while you enjoy delicious and distinguished single malts. The silent auction will feature: Member's Legacy Caperdonich 1967, The Arran Malt Single Malt, Amrut Cask Strength Indian Single Malt, Bruichladdich Organic Single Malt 2003, Balvenie 12 year old "Double Wood" finish, Dewar Rattry Cask Collection 14 year old, Laphroaig Single Malt 1999, Glenfarclas Single Malt, and Murray McDavid Vancouver Club Special Bottling. Signed first edition books include Last Night in Twisted River by John Irving, Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood, One on One by Peter Mansbridge, and many other select items. Details and photos from last year here:

Join us!
Only four days left for new members to be entered into the draw for a stellar collection of 2010 BC Book Prize finalists! Join now. Thank you to the BC Book Prizes for donating this fabulous prize. Click for more information,

Special Event

Alexander McCall Smith
The Vancouver International Writers Festival and Random House Canada present the bestselling author of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series who will talk about his forthcoming book, Corduroy Mansions. Complete details on our website,

Alexander McCall Smith is one of the many travelers whose plans were altered by Eyjafjallaj√∂kull’s volcanic ash. Since he was unable to fulfill several engagements, McCall Smith plans interactive online sessions on his website.


"The best book won" says Sam Jordison about the winner of The Lost Man Booker Prize.

Robert J. Sawyer has won the Best Novel (English) Award and Laurent McAllister Best Novel (French) in the 2010 Prix Aurora Awards.

The longlist for the Theakstons Old Peculier crime novel of the year award has been announced. The prize will be awarded July 22.

Students have chosen a new story in a detective series starring a young Sherlock Holmes as the winner of the 2010 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards.

The U.K.'s Debut Dagger competition has helped launch the careers of several Canadian crime-writers.

Author/visual artist Gloria Vanderbilt has announced the establishment of the annual Gloria Vanderbilt Short Fiction Prize, worth $2,000, to be awarded to an emerging Canadian writer in honour of Vanderbilt’s late son, Carter V. Cooper.

James W. Nichol’s Death Spiral, presented at the 2009 Festival, is one of the five nominees for the Arthur Ellis Awards.

American writer Junot Diaz, who captured a Pulitzer Prize for fiction for 2008, has been elected to the Pulitzer board for a 3-year term.

This year's Guardian Hay festival will include an award, judged by actor and writer Stephen Fry, the unofficial king of Twitter, for 'the most beautiful tweet' ever written.


A new study published in the journal Research in Social Stratification and Mobility shows a strong correlation between a child’s academic achievement and the number of books his or her parents own.

There will be at least 50 events throughout this summer honouring the 50th anniversary of To Kill A Mockingbird.

The Australian quotes John Ralston Saul’s focus, in A Fair Country, on the fallacy of modern philosophy, the false divide between fiction and non-fiction, and the lack of aboriginality in history writing, among other ssues.

Douglas Coupland has donated his archives to the University of British Columbia.

Among the letters to Juliet from all around the world are the 5,000-plus letters received by the Club di Giuiietta each year.

Desperate science fiction author Peter Riley is offering a cash incentive to read his novel.

Henning Mankell, Swedish author of the Kurt Wallender mysteries, describes how and why he is turning his attention to helping Africans tell their life stories.

Robert Fisk, the distinguished Middle East correspondent, is writing about food? Well, yes.


The Montreal Gazette has a rave review of a series of children’s books, with their unique view of childhood. Written by Norwegian author, Stian Hole, the books are now translated and distributed in North America.

Interviews with the author and the translator may be found here:
and here:

Jack Batten, in his review in The Star, describes the third book in Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy, as “the best of the lot”; Peter Robinson, in the Globe, “a superior page-turner”.

Now attention turns to the row about Larsson’s legacy and the unfinished fourth manuscript.

Alone in Berlin, a little-known thriller about the German resistance against the Nazis has become a surprise UK bestseller–more than 60 years after it was written.

In her review of The Dead Republic, Elizabeth Grove-White writes that Henry Smart remains one of Roddy Doyle’s great characters.

This week’s New Yorker includes Ash, a new short story by Doyle, begun before Eyjafjallaj√∂kull’s volcanic ash appeared, he claims.

The New Yorker explores this further in a Q and A.

Marilynne Robinson’s Absence of Mind “is a gush of fresh air in the controversy over science and religion”, writes John Gray. Robinson “may be the only living novelist who has made a genuine contribution to philosophical reflection.”

Martin Levin pursues some of the issues in an interview with Marilynne Robinson.

Sarah Hampson interviews Ryan Knighton on the background to his latest book, C’mon Papa: Dispatches from a Dad in the Dark.

Those who heard Jackie Kay during her Festival appearances during the 90s will remember her amusing comments about being a partly Nigerian girl, adopted by a white Scottish couple. This year, she has published the memoir Red Dust Road. Here is an extract that describes her meeting with her real African father.


Reading by the author of Southern Fried Rice: Life in a Chinese Laundry in the Deep South. Thursday, May 27 at 6:00pm. Foo's Ho Ho Restaurant, 120 E. Pender.

Readings by Brian Brett and Audrey Thomas. Thursday, May 27 at 7:00pm, free. UBC Bookstore Library, Robson Square, 800 Robson Street.

A night of music and spoken word featuring a performance by Guns N' Roses tribute band Mr. Brownstone plus local poets and comedic troupe Pump Trolley writing and performing new work in response to the Appetite for Destruction album. Thursday, May 27 at 7:30pm. Tickets $10. Cottage Bistro, 4470 Main Street.

Reading by the author of The Year Finding Memory. Friday, May 28 at 5:00pm. Rm 301, Irving K. Barber Centre, 1961 East Mall, UBC. For more information, phone 604.822.6799.

The Greater Vancouver chapter of the Romance Writers of America hosts its annual conference. May 28-29, 2010. Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Richmond Campus, 8771 Lansdowne Road, Richmond. For complete details, visit their website

Enjoy a weekend of writing, readings, and inspiring connections. Many different genres will be offered. May 28-30, 2010. Salmon Arm, BC. For complete details, visit their website at

Book launch of the latest edition to Phaidon's world-renowned Cream series that includes three local artists. Saturday, May 29 at 11:00am. Tickets and more information at Vancity Theatre, 1181 Seymour Street.

Readings by Asian-Canadian writers including Evelyn Lau, Marty Chan, Kagan Goh and Kellee Ngan. Saturday, May 29 at 2:00pm. Rm 120 C.K. Choi Building, 1855 West Mall, UBC. For more information, phone 604.822.6799.

While the cherry blossoms bloom from March through May, you are invited to write your haiku with fresh inspiration. The poems will be judged during the summer and winners announced in the fall 2010. Winning poems will then be featured during the 2011 festival. The deadline for the next round of haiku submissions is May 31, 2010. More information at

Anosh Irani has a new novel Dahanu Road and it's his most personal yet, inspired by his own family history. It's a love story full of tragedy and humour about three generations of the Irani clan, Zoroastrians who fled persecution in Iran and settled in Bombay. As with all of Anosh's writing, it will make you weep and laugh, and weep again because you're laughing so hard!. Come meet Anosh Irani in the intimated setting of CBC's Studio One on Monday May 31 at 6:30 pm. The only way to get in, is to win! Go to to enter for free tickets.

Reading and book signing by the author of The Raven's Gift. Monday, May 31 at 6:30pm, free. Ecomarine Ocean Kayak Centre, 1668 Duranleau Street, Granville Island. More information at

Author and TV personality will sign copies of her new book The Mischievous Mom at the Art Gallery. Tuesday, June 1 at 4:00pm. Vancouver Kidsbooks, 3083 West Broadway. More information at

A live broadcast in support featuring a spoken-word program with Paul Fischer, Duncan Shields, the Vancouver Storyteller Society's Naomi Steinberg, and hosts Diane Laloge and S.R. Duncan. Tuesday, June 1 at 8:30pm. Suggested donation: $5-$10. Cafe Deux Soleils (2096 Commercial Drive). More information at

Stories told by Jackie Timothy, the Vancouver Public Library's First Nations Storyteller-in-Residence. Wednesday, June 2 at 7:00pm, free. Alice MacKay Room, Lower Level, Central Library, 350 West Georgia Street. For more information please contact Vancouver Public Library at 604-331-3603.

In George Fetherling's wonderfully imagined novel, Walt Whitman's secret isn't his homosexuality but another one entirely. Wednesday, June 2 at 7:30pm, free. Alma VanDusen Room, Lower Level, Central Library, 350 West Georgia Street. For more information please contact Vancouver Public Library at 604-331-3603.

Join author for a cooking demonstration and book signing from her new cookbook The Boreal Gourmet: Adventures in Northern Cooking. Thursday, June 3 at 6:00pm. Tickets $45 and include a copy of the cookbook. Barbara-Jo's Books to Cooks, 1740 2nd Ave. W. For more information, phone 604.688.6755.

Author Anna Swanson launches her new book of poetry. Thursday, June 3 at 7:00pm. Cafe Montmartre, 4362 Main Street.

Rene Cormier, a motorcycle and a goal: to go around the world with no idea of what to expect. Join Rene for a slideshow and readings from his book of the experience, The University of Gravel Roads. Saturday, June 5 at 3:00pm, free. West End Community Centre, Joe Fortes Branch, 870 Denman Street. For more information please contact Joe Fortes Branch at 604-665-3972.

Author reads from her memoir, Nice Recovery. Monday, June 7 at 7:30pm, free. Alice MacKay Room, Lower Level, Central Library, 350 West Georgia Street.


A monthly book club presented by Pandora's Collective and the VPL will be discussing Jose Saramago's "The Cave". Wednesday, June 9 at 6:30pm. Britannia Library, 1661 Napier. For more information or to register contact:

writer and performer Charles Demers examines the who, what, where, when, why, and how of Vancouver in his new book Vancouver Special. Wednesday, June 9 at 7:30pm, free. Alma VanDusen & Peter Kaye Rooms, Lower Level, Central Library, 350 West Georgia Street. For more information please contact Vancouver Public Library at 604-331-3603.

Readings by Andrew Binks and Sarah Roberts. Thursday, June 10 at 7:00pm, free. UBC Bookstore, Robson Square, Plaza Level, 800 Robson Street. More information at

The 18th annual Vancouver International Storytelling Festival features local and international artists & storytellers RC Weslowski, Allison Cox, Little Woo, Wang Su Ma, Jacques Lalonde, Kwii ge ii wans (Roberta Kennedy), Erin Graham, Mary Gavan, Zamir Dhanji, Chris Murdoch and others. June 11-13, 2010. Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, 578 Carrall Street. For complete details, visit

Opening and book launch of the George Fertig Retrospective. Saturday, June 12 at 1:00pm. Burnaby Art Gallery, 6344 Deer Lake Avenue, Burnaby.

Reading and book signing by the author of The Book of Awesome. Saturday, June 12 at 2:00pm. Chapters Robson and Howe, 788 Robson Street. More information at 604.682.4066.

New York Times bestselling author Jacqueline Carey reads from Namah's Curse, book two of her lushly imagined Namah trilogy featuring daughter of Alba, Moirin. Monday, June 14 at 7:30pm, free. Alma VanDusen Room, Lower Level, Central Library, 350 West Georgia Street.

Early-bird registration is now being accepted for the 3rd annual Write on Bowen Festival for Writers and Readers. July 2-4, 2010. For the full Festival line-up and registration details, visit

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