New Titles

Birding in the Glass Age of Isolation

978-0-88971-368-0 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
April 2020

By Curtis LeBlanc

Birding in the Glass Age of Isolation explores the experience and greater social implications of mental illness, specifically OCD and Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder. It asks the questions: How does anxiety inform both how we act and how we interpret those actions afterwards? How does the fear of retribution from one’s own mind lead to miscalculations or total inaction? Finally, how is one’s self-worth effaced in the balancing act between trying to do the right thing and doing nothing at all?

Body Count

978-0-88971-370-3 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
April 2020

By Kyla Jamieson

Body Count focuses on Jamieson’s experience with a concussion and post-concussion syndrome and deals with the embodied costs of misogyny, the hostilities and precarities of life under neoliberal global capitalism, connection amidst the proliferation of persuasive technologies and the dizzying escapism of romance and pleasure—before the roughly chronological text is interrupted by a brain injury and its attendant symptoms: migraines, light and sound sensitivity, proprioceptive and ocular dysfunction, cognitive deficits, memory impairment, anxiety, depression, irritability, weakness and fatigue. Jamieson’s poems use plain language to journey through dreamscapes and pain states in search of new understandings of self and worth. Body Count is about the toll illness takes, but it is also an insistence that the body, and somatic ways of knowing, count. This is the first poetry collection by a Canadian writer to illuminate the experience of a concussion and PCS, which is a deceptively simple medical diagnosis used to describe a constellation of symptoms requiring a multitude of treatments, therapies and exercises.

In the Beggarly Style of Imitation

978-0-88971-372-7 - Paperback
5.5" x 8.5" - 224 pages - $19.95
April 2020

By Jean Marc Ah-Sen

Born on the twin backs of torpidity and obsession, In the Beggarly Style of Imitation is a voyage into the mind of one of the Canadian literary underground’s most unruly writers. Equal parts tribute to the historical genesis of the novel and the well-trodden subject of love, the exercises of imitation contained in this collection offer a brief survey through the illustrious forms and genres of literary expression: epistolary, aphorism, essay, picaresque, romance and satire culminate in a celebratory brand of fiction that proves with finality that imitation is truly the vilest form of flattery.


978-0-88971-374-1 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
April 2020

By Yusuf Saadi

Pluviophile is a poetic rumination on where language originates and what value it retains to unearth the sacred in postmodernity, among other subjects. The opening poem, “The Place Where Words Go to Die,” winner of the Malahat Review’s 2016 Far Horizons Poetry Award, imagines an underworld where words are killed and reborn, shedding their signifiers like skin to re-enter the symbiotic relationship with the human, where “saxum [is] sacrificed and born again as saxifrage.” From here the poems shift to diverse locations, from Montreal to Kolkata, from the moon to the gates of heaven.

The Sasquatch, the Fire and the Cedar Baskets

978-0-88971-376-5 - Paperback
7" x 8.5" - 24 pages - $14.95
April 2020 - B&W illustrations

By Joseph Dandurand; illustrated by Dionne Paul

“Deep in the thickest part of a cedar forest there lived a young Sasquatch. He was over nine feet tall and his feet were about size twenty. He had long brown hair that covered all of his body. His hands were so big and his arms so long he could wrap them around the biggest of the cedar trees. He had been born here many years ago and he did not know his parents, as they had been scared away by a great fire. He was left on his own and he had survived by eating berries and he had grown into the Sasquatch he now was...”

So begins this charming story for children by Kwantlen storyteller Joseph Dandurand. The Sasquatch, spirit of the great cedar forest, eludes human hunters, falls in love, fathers a lovely daughter and saves his little family from a forest fire by dousing the flames with water stored in baskets carefully woven by his mate.

The story is told with grace and simplicity by a master storyteller in the great tradition of the Kwantlen people. Accompanied by attractive black and white illustrations by shíshálh artist Dionne Paul, The Sasquatch, the Fire and the Cedar Baskets follows a similar style to popular Nightwood titles such as Salmon Boy, Mayuk the Grizzly Bear and How the Robin Got Its Red Breast.

O Canada Crosswords Book 20

978-0-88971-359-8 - Paperback
8.5" x 11" - $15.95
October 2019

By Gwen Sjogren

The twentieth volume in the bestselling O Canada Crosswords series.

O Canada Crosswords just keeps on giving to thousands of solvers who like their crosswords Canadian. Nightwood Editions is proud to celebrate O Canada Crosswords’s milestone twentieth anniversary with Gwen Sjogren’s ninth book in the series, which features one hundred larger-sized grids and over 2,600 Canadian clues.

With themes that touch on art, geography, Olympics and hockey—plus some music and magic mixed in for good measure—this instalment brings a cornucopia of CanCon to the table. Thirty-three Canadian-themed puzzles include “Breakout Hits,” “Fit as a Fiddler,” “Pictures Perfect,” “East Coast Scenic” and “For Lac of a Better Word.”

Other themed entries include “Eight Kates,” “Magical Mysteries Tour,” “From A to Sea” and “Systems Scramble.” Seven puzzles offer the challenge of no fill-in-the-blank clues. Additionally, this collection has three circle-in-the-square puzzles and a handful of rebus-related grids. So if you’re hungry for national content, pull up a chair and dig into this buffet of crossword fun, puns... and all the Canadiana you can eat!

Bone Black

978-0-88971-364-2 - Paperback
5.5" x 8.5" - $21.95
October 2019

By Carol Rose GoldenEagle (Daniels)

There are too many stories about Indigenous women who go missing or are murdered, and it doesn’t seem as though official sources such as government, police or the courts respond in a way that works toward finding justice or even solutions. At least that is the way Wren StrongEagle sees it.

Wren is devastated when her twin sister, Raven, mysteriously disappears after the two spend an evening visiting at a local pub. When Wren files a missing persons report with the local police, she is dismissed and becomes convinced the case will not be properly investigated. As she follows media reports, Wren realizes that the same heartbreak she’s feeling is the same for too many families, indeed for whole Nations. Something within Wren snaps and she decides to take justice into her own hands. She soon disappears into a darkness, struggling to come to terms with the type of justice she delivers. Throughout her choices, and every step along the way, Wren feels as though she is being guided. But, by what?

Islamophobia in the True North

978-0-88971-362-8 - Paperback
5.5" x 8.5" - $21.95
October 2019

By Graeme Truelove

Un-Canadian: Islamophobia in the True North is a provocative warning to Canadians that the values they cherish are being eroded through a disturbing pattern of political, legal and social prejudice against Muslims.

Even to the most politically-engaged Canadians, when these instances are surveyed as a whole, the pattern of “othering” is shocking. This readable book recounts vicious hate crimes and police harassment of innocent individuals, and compares the frenzied response from the media, politicians and the justice system when an accused criminal is a Muslim, to the muted equivocations when they are not. The book examines the ordeals faced by Muslim Canadians like Omar Khadr and Maher Arar who have had their most basic human rights actively violated by the Canadian government, and analyzes the impact of laws targeting what Muslim women are allowed to wear. Finally, the book concludes with the inspirational and creative efforts of Muslim and non-Muslim Canadians working to bring us closer together.

Spanning settings from dark prison cells in Guantanamo Bay and Syria to the gilded corridors of power on Parliament Hill, this book addresses fundamental notions of social cohesion and the value of Canadian citizenship. Canadians who are worried about the direction our country is headed will consider it a must-read.

Renaissance Normcore

978-0-88971-360-4 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - $18.95
October 2019

By Adle Barclay

Renaissance Normcore belts like a classically trained riot grrrl, composing catchy tunes in the key of fear and desire. Building on the dreamy emotional landscapes she plumbed in If I Were in a Cage I’d Reach Out for You, Barclay navigates even sharper peaks and valleys in her second collection to examine the links between intimacy and power. Tracking the paradoxical impulses of anguish and joy that underpin daily life in our hostile neoliberal climate, these poems are both abject and sweet as they repurpose loss into life and test the bounds of how much a poem can hold.

Belated Bris of the Brainsick

978-0-88971-366-6 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - $18.95
October 2019

By Lucas Crawford

Belated Bris of the Brainsick traces 1) a belated and in some ways violent revelation about one’s ancestry and one’s past, 2) a resultant mental breakdown and 3) the pursuit of a new life with someone else who lives with mental illness. These events and the styles in which they are told are inflected by queer, transgender and disabled perspectives and aesthetics. If there is a narrative arc to the collection, it is not the usual one of falling ill and then regaining health; rather, it is the pursuit of a “queered” version of health.

Let 'Em Howl
Lessons from a Life in Backroom Politics

978-0-88971-358-1 - Paperback
6" x 9" - $22.95
October 2019

By Patricia Sorbara

Patricia Sorbara has been a political operative for more than forty years—a mainstay in the background of both federal and provincial politics in Ontario, dedicating her career to the Liberal Party. She’s worked for and with Liberal Opposition Leaders, Premiers, Members of Parliament, Members of Provincial Parliament and more candidates than any staffer could imagine. Sorbara became known as the woman to have on side, the one who knows the ground game and never backs down from a challenge. In December of 2014, all of that changed. A potential candidate in Sudbury, ON, went to the media with the allegation that Sorbara, acting on behalf of the Party, had offered a bribe in exchange for stepping down from a nomination race. She was blindsided.

While on trial in Sudbury in the fall of 2017, Sorbara found herself leaning on the unique education of decades in politics, one that came with being a lifelong female political staffer, which saw her through the first emotional moments of the trial to the eventual verdict nearly seven weeks later. But it didn’t end there. In Let ’Em Howl: Lessons from a Life in Backroom Politics, Sorbara shares her best lessons from the back room—the ones that sustained her in the darkest hours—illustrated by stories featuring key political figures in Canadian politics. The result is required reading for anyone interested in Canadian politics or government.

Dead Flowers

978-0-88971-355-0 - Paperback
5.5" x 8.5" - 200 pages - $19.95
April 2019

By Alex Laidlaw

An anonymous writer stays up late into the night penning personal and inappropriate letters to a local public official. A new father and cook at a Montreal café chronicles the tyrannical rise of a new manager. An eccentric young student, in trying to carve out a space for herself, deals an existential blow to her roommate. Dead Flowers is a collection of stories featuring characters who have become estranged from the trajectory of their lives, yet must grapple with youth, love, isolation, drugs, friendship and the changing of seasons. These are stories of peripheral tragedies, moral ambivalence and compromise, chance and how we are shaped by what finds us.

Visual Inspection

978-0-88971-356-7 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 150 pages - $18.95
April 2019

By Matt Rader

Composed over a period of profound illness, Visual Inspection is a searching reflection on poetry, power and our embodied lives. Shaped by matching elements of literary history, poetic practice, contemporary art, politics and ecology with Rader’s own experience of chronic illness and pain, Visual Inspection writes into and through what is accessible to our minds and bodies. Part memoir, part essay, part poetic investigation, the text guides us through kaleidoscopic meditations on disability, access, vision, redaction, pain, illness and death. Set primarily in the central Okanagan, Visual Inspection is a codex of references, artifacts and associations that, taken as whole, revisions access as process and art as experience.

Outside, America

978-0-88971-354-3 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
April 2019

By Sarah de Leeuw

Criss-crossing the Canadian/American border and making efforts to grasp a confused global state, Outside, America digs through grief, loss, aging, technological frustrations, environmental degradation and nationalism. This is poetry unfolding across a variety of scales, from global spheres to the most intimate of domestic spaces: tethered to everything from climate change and scientific discovery, from the death of parents to resource extraction, divorce and career changes, these poems touch down on whale extinctions and lounges in international airports, on debris slides and suiciding pilots, on sinkholes, astronauts, grocery-store magazines, earthquakes and even sinking ferries and pop stars.

Near Miss

978-0-88971-353-6 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
April 2019

By Laura Matwichuk

Near Miss considers the relationship between close calls and the tenuous conditions of contemporary life. From actual cataclysms such as meteor collisions and volcanic eruptions to everyday failures and accidents, these inventive poems collide with the perpetual unease created by life’s unpredictability while contemplating mortality, fragility, gratitude and hopefulness.

... When the Emergency Broadcast

System proclaims this is only a test, you

leave the TV on because you’ve gotten

used to the sound. You keep waiting

for the heat to come on, for the regular

broadcast to resume, for a new sensation

to quicken inside you like the sight

of that fleet of ghost-planes lifted

from the desert, reanimated, hovering

over your house as if everything is fine.

— “Decommissioned Planes”

Fresh Pack of Smokes

978-0-88971-352-9 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
April 2019

By Cassandra Blanchard

“This night in Oppenheimer Park Dan asked me to shit-kick this chick in the face as she owed money and I said no because I didn’t know who she was and I wasn’t about to play with fire so he sat on the bench then stood up and did a flying kick twice to her chin and she convulsed and passed out he said he didn’t want to spill blood because she had HIV…”


Dissecting herself and the life she once knew living a transient life that included time spent in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside as a bonafide drug addict, Blanchard writes plainly about violence, drug use and sex work in Fresh Pack of Smokes, offering insight into an often overlooked or misunderstood world.