Month: November 2013

Read This, Watch That: The Teen Collection at the movies

You’re an adult.  We know that.  You have a grownup job with responsibilities:  just like us.  But, let’s admit it, sometimes it’s downright delicious to read from the Teen Collection.  It’s there we can find our Edward, and pretend we’re kickass like Catniss.  Join me in the teen stacks to find these hot titles.  Read them now before the movies come out…

How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

2013 NVCL Readers’ Choice Awards – Fiction

It’s time!!Vote for your favourite novel of 2013 in our first ever Readers’ Choice Awards!

Later this week, we will ask for your favourite nonfiction books. The winners of both will be announced in early December, just in time for Christmas shopping!

Book News Roundup!

CatchingFireIn honor of the movie’s opening weekend, The Onion reviews the new Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Hi-larious.

The U.S.’s prestigious National Book Award winners were announced this week.

“Selfie” is Oxford’s word of the year.

The Globe and Mail has released its annual lists of 100 best books of 2013 divided into a subcategories of genres, including Best Canadian Fiction and Nonfiction, Best International Fiction and Nonfiction, and Best YA and Children’s Books.

Tell the CBC about how a book changed your life and you could win a trip to Toronto for the Canada Reads live studio taping.

Can I See Your Poetic License Please?

Can I See Your Poetic License Please?      © Joan Boxall         November 2013.

…recalls my last car chase, in hot pursuit of an errant poet.

(officer)  You’re writing erratically

Like a wild Haiku

Tripping and looping, all over the page.

I’m gonna pull you over and throw the hardcover at you…(siren and flashers on)

Heh, you didn’t signal…pull over…(on radio)…Constable Cutterdown here, I’m not reading her.  Licence plate, RUB41ZEE; driving an Alice-in-mun-ro-land Hybrid, 10-4…


To hear the rest of the poem, join Joan here at North Vancouver City Library on November 27th for An Evening of Poetry where she’ll be reading along with Dina Del Bucchia.  The event is free, but please register.


Community Reader Profile: Dina Del Bucchia

DinaSmName: Dina Del Bucchia

Job Title: Writer

Best book I’ve read so far this year: The Flamethrowers by Rachel Kushner

I will read any book by: George Saunders

Best place to write on a rainy day: Home, wearing pyjamas.

Best place to write on a sunny day: Home, wearing pyjamas. Only in the morning though. Gotta spend those sunny days outside.

A book I know I should read, but haven’t: I don’t feel like I should have read any particular books, but there are many I’ve not read. Also there are so many I’ve started and not finished. Mostly big, heavy books. Infinite Jest and Underworld, both of which I got 100 pages into before deciding I was weak of both mind and body.

A guilty pleasure favourite: I don’t understand guilty reading. If you’re reading and you enjoy it then there’s no guilt involved. I might read books that are terrible, but I still enjoy them for their terribleness, like a nice juicy, horribly written, self-indulgent celebrity biography. Delicious. No read-shaming!

The book I push on all my friends because it is soooooooo good: Sarah Manguso’s Hard to Admit and Harder to Escape. It’s a collection of very short stories, but since she’s also a poet I push it on prose and poetry people. It only comes in a boxed set with two other small books of flash fiction, one by Dave Eggers and the other by Deb Olin Unferth so the whole thing is a win-win-win.

The plot of my first piece of writing: The first piece I remember was a rhyming poem, like a nursery rhyme type of thing. There was a kitten that had a very special cup and people were jumping over it. I was probably working through some heavy stuff with that metaphor. I was in elementary school.

Why I write: I like to make things up.

Where you can find me: and on Twitter @DelBauchery

Otters*Dina’s poetry collection, Coping With Emotions and Otters, was published by Talon Books this year. Dina will be joining us for a Poetry Party on Wed., Nov. 27th. The event is free, but please register here.

When Carrie Bradshaw Meets Eat, Pray, Love

Jenny Feldon was living the dream: she was a twentysomething writer in New York City.  Then her husband’s job took her away from it all — to India, where she become an ex-pat housewife.  She began writing about her experiences in the third world  in her blog, Karma in the (Indian) City.  Since then, Jenny has relocated to the States, welcomed two children and her repurposed blog,  Karma (continued…) has become one of my favourite mommy blogs.  Her first book, Karma Gone Bad is just out now, and we’re very pleased to have her guest posting for us.  Without further ado, here’s Jenny Feldon:karma

What travel memoirs inspired you when writing Karma Gone Bad?

It’s going to sound obvious, but I read Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat Pray Love while I was in India and also while traveling through Bali, and loved it.
Her journey was very different than mine, obviously, but her experience really inspired me to look at my path in a new light. I also love Susan Jane Gilman’s Undress Me in the Temple of Heaven, Sarah MacDonald’s Holy Cow and Trail of Crumbs by Kim Sunee.

Describe the experience of writing a book with young children at home.
Two words: not easy 🙂
There were a lot of really late nights and really early mornings when I was working on the manuscript for Karma Gone Bad…I’d set my alarm for 4:00am so I could have two solid hours of writing time before my kids woke up.candyland
Little ones need a lot of attention, and it’s hard to explain to an eighteen-month-old that you just need to finish this one chapter before you can take him to the park, or to a four-year-old that you’re too exhausted to play Candyland with her. There were days I literally had to shove my laptop under the couch so I wouldn’t be tempted to work while I was supposed to be parenting, and other days when (even though it broke my heart to leave them) I had to get a babysitter and spent the day at a coffee shop. Balancing motherhood and writing is an ongoing challenge, but one I feel so incredibly grateful for–ever since I was a little kid, the two things I dreamed of were being a published author, and being a mom. To have had both those dreams come true is truly amazing, and I feel blessed every day.

babyYour blog has gone through several transitions. Will there be a sequel to Karma Gone Bad?
I hope so! I have several more projects in the works, and the sequel (working title: Baby Karma!) is at the top of my list. But no matter what my next book ends up being, I’ll keep blogging about my journey–it’s been a wonderful way to work on my writing, and even better one to connect with people all over the world.

A big THANK YOU to Jenny Feldon for sharing her experiences with us!  We can’t wait to see where your journey takes you next.


Casting Female Literary Leads

The last two years have seen some pretty amazing female literary characters. Coincidentally, many of their print vehicles are being made into films (or should be, imo). Here is who I would cast if given the power. (Somebody really should give me this power).

JenniferConnellyNicole Kidman will produce and star in the psychological thriller Reconstructing Amelia, by Kimberly McCreight, but I picture someone a bit warmer playing the main character of Kate Baron, a single mother searching for answers to her teen daughter’s suicide. Jennifer Connelly has the softness and sadness to play a heartbroken mom, while still being believable as a revenge seeker. Plus, Jen hasn’t been in much lately and a well-done thriller could really inject some life into a once promising career.

11th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - ArrivalsI really wish Bette Midler was young enough to play Jules Jacobsen in a film adaptation of Meg Wolitzer’s The Interestings. But in her stead, I might cast a frizzy haired Lauren Ambrose (Claire Fisher from Six Feet Under), to portray Jules’s endearing neuroses. Noah Baumbach (The Squid and the Whale) or Nicole Holofcener (Please Give) are two character-focused directors that would do a nice job with this New York dramedy, which follows the life trajectories of a group of performing arts camp attendees into adulthood.

TIME-JENNIFER-LAWRENCERachel Kushner has been the “it” girl of the fiction world this year. Her novel, The Flamethrowers — about a young motorcycle-riding artist in 1970s New York  — has been heaped with praise and award nods. Therefore, casting Hollywood’s current “it” girl Jennifer Lawrence as the title character, Reno, seems appropriate.

KateeSackhoffHugh Howey’s sci-fi thriller Wool has already been optioned by 20th Century Fox, with Ridley Scott, of Alien and Blade Runner fame, set to direct.  So far, I haven’t seen any word on who will star as Juliett, the badass reluctant hero of the post-apocalyptical saga. Who better to bring her fierceness to life than Battlestar Galactica’s Katee Sackhof (Starbuck).

SandraOhSusan Choi’s My Education, about a PhD student’s affair with her professor’s wife, may have recently been nominated for a Bad Sex Award, but I think the movie version would be hot! And you know who would make it so? Sandra Oh.

RachelWeiszMaria Semple’s Where’d You Go Bernadette – one of my favourite books of 2012is also being made into a movie.  Whoever plays the enigmatic, but hilarious, Bernadette, needs to be adept at playing a character with subtle humor and a complex interior psyche. Call me crazy, but I think Rachel Weisz would be perfect. Though she’s not known for her comedy chops, something tells me Rachel has it in her. (I purposely chose a semi-unflattering photo of her because she is totally wearing Bernadette sunglasses!)

SamiraWileyAnd finally, someone needs to make a movie of Americanah, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, just so I can see Samira Wiley play the roll of Nigerian-born Ifemelu as she navigates the complicated rules of race and nationality in America. Samira, who plays Poussey Washington in my new favourite show, Orange is the New Black, definitely has the charisma needed, and deserves a shot at a big-screen role.


What do you think? Should I change careers and head to Hollywood?