New Titles

How to Be Eaten by a Lion

978-0-88971-318-5 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
May 2016

By Michael Johnson

From the monk who sets himself on fire in a crowded intersection of Saigon (“the familiar corded tendons of his hands, become / a bracken of ashes, a carbon twine of burnt”), to the salmon run in British Columbia (“The salmon word / for home is glacierdust and once-tall trees unlimbed, / a taste, no matter where, they know”), Johnson writes of topics varied and eclectic, unified by a focus on moments both declining and revenant.

Startling and haunting, the poems delve into the ways in which these moments are transformative, beautiful and unexpected. Being eaten by a lion is a gift rather than a loss, an opportunity for grace: “Instead, focus on your life, / its crimson liquor he grows drunk on. / Notice the way the red highlights his face, / how the snub nose is softened, the lips made / fuller; notice his deft musculature, his rapture.”

Lyrical and rich with visceral imagery, How to Be Eaten by a Lion lingers, exploring the world with an eye for detail and an ear for music.

The Red Files

978-0-88971-316-1 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
May 2016

By Lisa Bird-Wilson

This debut poetry collection from Lisa Bird-Wilson reflects on the legacy of the residential school system: the fragmentation of families and histories, with blows that resonate through the generations.

Inspired by family and archival sources, Bird-Wilson assembles scraps of a history torn apart by colonial violence. The collection takes its name from the federal government's complex organizational structure of residential schools archives, which are divided into “black files" and “red files." In vignettes as clear as glass beads, her poems offer affection to generations of children whose presence within the historic record is ghostlike, anonymous and ephemeral.

The collection also explores the larger political context driving the mechanisms that tore apart families and cultures, including the Sixties Scoop. It depicts moments of resistance, both personal and political, as well as official attempts at reconciliation: “I can hold in the palm of my right hand / all that I have left: one story-gift from an uncle, / a father's surname, treaty card, Cree accent echo, metal bits, grit— / and I will still have room to cock a fist."

The Red Files concludes with a fierce hopefulness, embracing the various types of love that can begin to heal the traumas inflicted by a legacy of violence.

Surviving City Hall

978-0-88971-320-8 - Paperback
6" x 9" - 224 pages - $22.95
May 2016

By Donna Macdonald

Based on a small town in British Columbia, this book is relevant to communities and the people who care about them, right across the country.

With humour and humanity, Surviving City Hall reveals the workings of the municipal world based on author Donna Macdonald's nineteen years as a city councillor. Wrestling with ground squirrels, dealing with dogs and grappling with the Three Bears of Governance, Macdonald offers an insider's view into how things work at city hall in a call to citizens in communities of all shapes and sizes.

From the table where council members make decisions—to lock out city workers, detoxify a workplace issue, permit high density development and ban dogs downtown—to the richness of community life, including meetings, memorials, meat banquets and rallies for the protection of endangered animals, this book is a big-hearted take on small-town politics.

It's also a reflection on leadership and on democracy, and how we could do both better. Macdonald ponders women's participation in local governance, why it's critical and what the barriers are that can dissuade women from engaging more fully in the governance of their communities.


978-0-88971-313-0 - Paperback
6" x 9" - 80 pages - $18.95
November 2015

By Cindy Mochizuki & Rita Wong

The power of water is the power of blood, flood and drought. Water keeps it real, keeps us real. Forgetting this, we turn the earth into a toxic dump. Remembering this, we unfurl the future as perpetual possibility.

Water is also the strength of subtlety, quietly making its way through your body. perpetual is both a gift and a warning from water. Through drawings and graphic essays by artist Cindy Mochizuki and writer Rita Wong, the book visits some key sites where people have sabotaged themselves by desecrating water: the Pacific Ocean, the tar sands leaking into the Athabasca River, the historical salmon streams buried in sewers under Vancouver’s streets, pressing to be daylighted...

perpetual draws strength from the rivers that still flow wild, like the Fraser River, and from friendships made along the way in journeys with and for water. The book is a response to Dorothy Christian’s call to protect sacred waters. Humble and holy, water shows us a way to make peace and ethics, if we have the heart and spirit to learn.

Bearskin Diary

978-0-88971-311-6 - Paperback
6" x 9" - 256 pages - $21.95
November 2015

By Carol Daniels

“One of the most important voices in Canadian literature today.”
—Richard Van Camp

Raw and honest, Bearskin Diary gives voice to a generation of First Nations women who have always been silenced, at a time when movements like Idle No More call for a national inquiry into the missing and murdered Aboriginal women. Carol Daniels adds an important perspective to the Canadian literary landscape.

Taken from the arms of her mother as soon as she was born, Sandy was only one of over twenty thousand Aboriginal children scooped up by the federal government between the 1960s and 1980s. Sandy was adopted by a Ukrainian family and grew up as the only First Nations child in a town of white people. Ostracized by everyone around her and tired of being different, at the early age of five she tried to scrub the brown off her skin. But she was never sent back into the foster system, and for that she considers herself lucky.

From this tragic period in her personal life and in Canadian history, Sandy does not emerge unscathed, but she emerges strong—finding her way by embracing the First Nations culture that the Sixties Scoop had tried to deny. Those very roots allow Sandy to overcome the discriminations that she suffers every day from her co-workers, from strangers and sometimes even from herself.

Regeneration Machine

978-0-88971-317-8 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 80 pages - $18.95
October 2015

By Joe Denham

“The things he says; the way he says them; how he insists on singing his pain onto the page… Denham has become one of our most important poets.”
—Steven Heighton

Twenty years ago Nevin Sample walked into a small bank in Deep Cove, robbed a teller at gunpoint and fled into the forest of Cates Park. After a lengthy pursuit, he hid behind a stump at the edge of a small clearing. The police called to him. He raised the gun to his head and pulled the trigger.

Nevin had a magnetism, an understated complexity: there were those who loved him, resented him, found him gregarious. To Joe Denham, he was an old, close friend. Regeneration Machine is a 100-stanza, 9,000-word letter-in-verse to Nevin’s ghost—a requiem, elegy, lament; a sort of flailing attempt to make sense of the nonsensically violent way that a non-violent, caring, intelligent young man chose to end his life.

O Canada Crosswords Book 16

978-0-88971-312-3 - Paperback
8.5" x 11" - 232 pages - $13.95
October 2015

By Gwen Sjogren

100 All New Crosswords!

This latest instalment of the bestselling O Canada Crosswords series serves up an appetizing palate of Canadiana, pop culture and whimsical wordplay. Canadian themes touch on hockey, music, industry and places, and author Gwen Sjogren brings to the table several of her trademark pun puzzles like Money Changes Everything and Fit for a Witch. Seven grids have built-in shapes that enhance the rich flavour of this collection, including circle-in-the-square anagrams and the unique Breaking All the Rules—of crossword design, that is!

Sjogren takes a new approach to some non-themed Canada Cornucopia crosswords as “Challengers” and “Superchallengers” that give solvers a taste of something different. “Challengers” have seven or fewer three-letter answers; “Superchallengers” up the ante with fewer three-letter words and no fill-in-the-blank clues, either.

Packed with 100 puzzles, including 67 large-sized grids, O Canada Crosswords 16 offers a smorgasbord of 11,000+ clues for hours of crossword solving delight.

Mayor Snow

978-0-88971-314-7 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 80 pages - $18.95
September 2015

By Nick Thran

New poems from Trillium award-winning poet Nick Thran.

“Thran’s poems offer a meditation on the creativity involved in viewing, engaging with its productivity as well as its superfluity, spilling past the edges of what is represented to reflect the ways through which viewers come to imaginatively inhabit what is seen.”
—Michael Borkent, The Journal of Canadian Poetry

Mayor Snow is about both the abdication and acceptance of responsibilities and inheritance: be they civic, personal, poetic. It begins with speaker-less evocations of corrupt and oppressive political atmospheres and ends with first-person narrative tales of domestic life in Al Purdy’s refurbished A-frame. All of these poems work in a shadow, be they forebears, tabloids, cultural markers or government watchdogs.

In the opening and closing sequences, narrative devices act as smokescreens to abstract illustrations of power, with the central sequence reflecting on the subject of dislocation. Parody and paradox are closely intertwined throughout, with the authority of power disrupted through dark humour, unexpected images and the deep resonances existing in apparently innocuous things: a well-worn (and literally “powerless”) cabin, a baby daughter, a poem. The question of groundedness, whether literal, literary or familial, explores the terrain between the fearful and the familiar: “Go outside. / Listen to dogs howl. // How do we live / without power?”

Floating is Everything

978-0-88971-315-4 - Paperback
5.5" x 8" - 96 pages - $18.95
September 2015

By Sheryda Warrener

Sheryda Warrener’s second poetry collection touches on the illusion of remaining grounded and a sense of belonging. A retired cosmonaut returns from a record-breaking 438 days in space and attempts to re-immerse himself in the world. One speaker considers reinvention from the top floor of the World’s Tallest building; another, our complicated future from Reykjavik, post-eruption of Eyjafjallajökull. Confessions and aspirations suspend in air. Ghosts float in and out; inheritance and connection are called into question. Morrissey, Cindy Sherman, and Pancho Barnes make cameo appearances. Influence and personal lineage are traced back to the Vikings, demoted Pluto, artists frequenting a Parisian bar. One speaker confides: “Yes, she’s longing to be elsewhere. Just past the sun deck there’s something invisible worth having.” In Floating is Everything, a resolution lies nearly always out of reach.