Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Independent Publisher Awards were just announced and PGC is happy to find its publishers among the winners!

2007 Independent Publisher Book Awards Outstanding Books of the Year

Winners Include:

Most Outstanding Design
Gold goes to Pictures Showing What Happens on Every Page of Thomas Pynchon’s Novel Gravity’s Rainbow, artwork by Zak Smith
Tin House Books 9780977312795 | $49.95 pb

"Pictures Showing What Happens on Every Page of Thomas Pynchon’s Novel Gravity’s Rainbow is a prodigious work, a feast for the eyes and the intellect, and a fitting homage to one of the greatest novels of our times.”⎯Los Angeles Times

Most Life-Changing
Gold goes to It Takes a Nation: How Strangers Became Family in the Wake of Hurricane Katrina, edited by Laura Dawn; photographs by C.B. Smith, Earth Aware Editions 9781932771862 | $30.95 pb

"Hurricane Katrina may have exposed the worst of our cronyism-laden government, but it also brought out the best in the American spirit as captured in these stories and images. Thanks to MoveOn's Hurricane Housing Project, the victims of Katrina found shelter. And thanks to the citizen activism these amazing stories will surely inspire, we can all look forward to a more engaged and hopeful country."—Arianna Huffington, editor

Freedom Fighter Award
Bronze goes to What Do You See? by Irene Kai
Silver Light Publications |9780974489025 | $18.50 cl

With engaging, provocative, and sometimes erotic images of the human body, What Do You See? asks this question: Do you have the courage to see the truth? This beautifully designed book showcases the inspiring black and white photos, as well as text from four spiritual traditions to encourage self-reflection and abandoning presumptions, and challenge the reader's personal biases.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Julia Golding

Julia Golding, author of Den of Thieves, will be at the Enwave Theatre (231 Queens Quay West, Toronto, ON) at 1:30pm, Saturday June 9th as part of BOOKED. Check out event details on the BOOKED! website here.

As a part of Book Expo Canada, Julia will be signing her books on Sunday June 10th 11am-noon at the PGC booth.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Sherman Alexie

Publishers Group Canada will be having an event for Sherman Alexie (author of Flight) with the Toronto Women's Bookstore Friday, June 8th at 7:00pm. It will be a reading, talk, Q&A and signing at the store.
Sherman will also be reading at this year's BOOKED! on Sat, June 9th, 4:30pm.

Blackwater Reviewed in NOW Magazine

Check out the recent review of Blackwater by Howard Goldenthal (of CBC's Fifth Estate) in today's issue of NOW Magazine:

Monday, May 14, 2007

What Happened This Summer

Paul Yee, author of What Happened This Summer will be in Toronto reading, speaking and doing a Q&A for the Toronto Public Library’s Asian Heritage Month at the Annette Street Branch (145 Annette Street, Toronto ON M6P 1P3) on Wednesday, May 16th at 10:00am.
Paul Yee is the recipient of the Governor General’s Award for Ghost Train and the City of Vancouver Book Award for Saltwater City. He has authored numerous books for young people, including The Jade Necklace and The Bone Collector’s Son. Paul is a leading chronicler of the Chinese immigration experience in Canada.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

PGC Book Reviews - In Print

Books in Canada March 2007 – “Theatre Reviews” including Miss Julie by David French – Talonbooks

Georgia Straight 23/03/07 – Book review of The Breakdown So Far by MAC Farrant – Talonbooks “A resolute anti-materialism runs through the work – or at least a recognition that possessions don’t equal happiness.”

Vancouver Sun 31/03/07 – “Have Guns Will Travel” article featuring Blackwater by Jeremy Scahill – Nation Books + book cover

Vancouver Sun 31/03/07 – “Ted Hughes’ ‘Other Woman’” book review of Lover of Unreason by Yehuda Koren and Eilat Negev + interior image from book of Wevill “[the authors] display a talent for weaving scrupulous and unflinching journalistic detail into a riveting retelling of Wevill’s life.”

Ajax-Pickering News 11/04/07 – “Luxury SUV Shoppers Want Comfort and Performance” article featuring Kelley Blue Book

Clipper Weekly (Beausejour) 18/04/07 – “Proper Washing and Waxing Adds Value to Your Vehicle” article featuring Kelley Blue Book

Mississauga News 18/04/07 – “Kelley Blue Book Posts US Resale Values for Every New Vehicle on” article featuring Kelley Blue Book

Nanaimo News Bulletin 19/04/07 – “Special Occasions Top Reason for Car Washing” article featuring Kelley Blue Book

Toronto Star 21/04/07 – “Celebrity Chef’s New Ways with Ontario Lamb” article featuring Who’s Coming for Dinner by Jeffrey Suddaby – Stovetop Publishing + colour author photo

Globe and Mail 21/04/07 – “Books in Brief” book reviews featuring A Woman of Uncertain Character by Clancy Sigal – Carroll & Graf “…Sigal’s raucous coming-of-age memoir…”

Globe and Mail 21/04/07 – “Watch” article featuring Rick Steves’ Europe – Avalon Travel

Calgary Herald 21/04/07 – “Guide to World’s Woman-Worldly Places of Adventure” article featuring 100 Places Every Woman Should Go by Stephanie Griest – Travellers’ Tales “The only thing hotter than the travel checklist, seemingly, is chick travel…”

Winnipeg Free Press 22/04/07 – Book review of The Emotional Lives of Animals by Marc Bekoff – New World Library + colour cover image “Beckoff maintains a warm and caring tone throughout… This book is about emotions that, while borrowing the language of science, appeals in large part to the readers emotions.”

Victoria Times-Colonist 22/04/07 – “Yesteryear’s Cutting Edge Looks Tarnished Now” article featuring The Playboy Interviews: Larger Than Life by Stephen Randall and Editors of Playboy – M Press “…what remarkably candid snapshots of some of the world’s most famous people over the last half century this collection constitutes.”

Toronto Star 22/04/07 – Book review of Pink Icing and Other Stories by Pamela Mordecai – Insomniac Press “If you ever get the chance, I would highly recommend attending a reading by Toronto poet and story writer Pamela Mordecai…. The first pleasure of Mordecai’s story collection, Pink Icing, is how naturally and accurately this voice transfers to prose and the printed page…. Her subjects are diverse, her storytelling immediate – especially in her use of vibrant, dynamic language that superbly articulates an irrepressible Jamaican spirit.”

Chronicle Herald 23/04/07 – “Warming up to Climate Change” article featuring The Ten Minute Activist by The Mission Collective – Nation Books + colour cover image “…delightfully engaging book…”

Chatham Daily News 24/04/07 – “Auto Sales Down” article featuring Kelley Blue Book

Metro Edmonton 24/04/07
Metro Ottawa 24/04/07
Metro Calgary 24/04/07
Metro Toronto 24/04/07
– “Top Three in Books” book review of The Ten Minute Activist by The Mission Collective – Nation Books + colour cover image “The Mission Collective, a group of five writers and activists who live in the United States, have come together to reveal more than 100 easy ways to take back our planet. This book is not just about ways to help the environment – though they do mention planting a garden and car-pooling. What they also do is reveal truths about banks, oil companies, multi-national organizations, slave labour and power generating companies and what we can do to fight back.”

Toronto Sun 24/04/07 – “In the Long Run” article featuring Marathon Woman by Kathrine Switzer – Carroll & Graf + author interview + photo from book + colour author photo (taken in front of House on Parliament)

Red Deer Advocate 25/04/07 –“Next on Your Ipod: Music to Give Birth To” article featuring Birth: The Surprising History of How We are Born by Tina Cassidy – Grove Atlantic + interview with author

Toronto Sun 26/04/07 – “In the Long Run” article featuring Marathon Woman by Kathrine Switzer – Carroll & Graf – including extra blurbs and quotes from interview that didn’t make it into the above article

National Post 26/04/07 – “Gender Bender” article featuring Marathon Woman by Kathrine Switzer – Carroll & Graf + lengthy author interview

Alberni Valley Times 26/04/07 – “Did You Know” article featuring Kelley Blue Book

Alberni Valley Times 27/04/07 – “MP3s Ushered into Birthing Rooms” article featuring Birth: The Surprising History of How We are Born by Tina Cassidy – Grove Atlantic + interview with author

Halifax Daily News 28/04/07
– “Wave to Cyclists on the Tour de France” article featuring 100 Places Every Woman Should Go by Stephanie Griest – Travellers’ Tales “The only thing hotter than the travel checklist, seemingly, is chick travel.”
Windsor Star 28/04/07 – “See Famed Bike Race for Yourself Travel” article featuring 100 Places Every Woman Should Go by Stephanie Griest – Travellers’ Tales “The only thing hotter than the travel checklist, seemingly, is chick travel.”

Vancouver Sun 28/04/07 – “European Food, Arts, Sports, on Tap for Culture Vultures” article featuring 100 Places Every Woman Should Go by Stephanie Griest – Travellers’ Tales “The only thing hotter than the travel checklist, seemingly, is chick travel.”

National Post 28/04/07 – Book review of Pigeons by Andrew Blechman – Grove Atlantic + interview with author and photo of author in Boston with pigeons

Chronicle Journal 29/04/07 – “Understanding Self-worth” article featuring The Boy from the Sun by Duncan Weller – Simply Read Books + large cover image “…a simple but important story that will appeal to small children, but can also be enjoyed by adults who read it aloud.”

Winnipeg Free Press 29/04/07 – Book review of Remembering Tomorrow by Michael Albert – Seven Stories Press + colour cover image

Calgary Herald 29/04/07 – “Urgency Drives Collection” article featuring A Few Words Will Do by Lionel Kearns – Talonbooks “Lionel Kearns has a powerful mastery of English, so much that many poems call to be read a second time – immediately – just to savour that turning moment, for the words on which the poems hinges.”

Calgary Herald 29/04/07 –Teenager’s Holocaust Diary Heart-Wrenching & Poignant” article featuring The Diary of Petr Ginz by Petr Ginz and Chava Pressburger – Grove Atlantic “One word describes The Diary of Petr Ginz: heartbreaking…. Petr’s minimalist journal is that of a boy writing his way to his own doom. He seems not to have posterity in mind, but kept a log of daily life because he had an observant bent of mind and journal keeping is how that mind expressed itself…. The seed blooms anew now that his diary has been found.”

Chronicle Herald 30/04/07 –“Critters Have Feelings Too” article featuring The Emotional Lives of Animals by Marc Bekoff – New World Library + colour cover image “Bekoff reminds us that humans are indeed animals so it should seem beyond question that other animals have emotions.”

Canadian Family Magazine May 2007 – “Smarty Pants: Brilliant Family-tested Books, Music, DVDs, and Games for Every Kid in the House” article on page 79 including Awake to Nap by Nikki McClure – Sasquatch (listed as “family-tested”) + colour A–B book spread “It appeals to Sienna, and it’s sturdy for little hands. Even her three-year-old brother loves it.”

Canadian Gardening Magazine June 2007 – “Clippings” book review of Timber Presss Pocket Guide to Ground Covers by Davis MacKenzie – Timber Press + colour cover image“…comprehensive guide to ground covers…such a useful reference.”

Friday, May 4, 2007

Philosophical Wizardry

Harry Potter has put a spell on millions of readers, and they all want to find out more about the deeper meaning of his adventures. In Harry Potter and Philosophy, 17 experts in the field of philosophy unlock some of Hogwarts' secret panels, uncovering surprising insights that are enlightening both for wizards and for the most discerning muggles. Individual chapters look at such topics as life revealed in the Mirror of Erised; the ethics of magic; Moaning Myrtle, Nearly Headless Nick, and the relation of the mind to the brain; and the character of Hermione as a case of "sublimated feminism." Also examined in this witty collection are how Aristotle would have run a school for wizards; whether the Potter stories undermine religion and morality; how to tell good people from evil ones through the characters in these novels; and what dementors and boggarts can teach readers about happiness, fear, and the soul.

Egmont Reviews

An update on the latest Egmont reviews:

Sarah’s Stars Kids Reviews May 2007 – Five star book review of Midnight for Charlie Bone by Jenny Nimmo – Egmont "Enthralling and excellently written, this book will seize you in a chokehold and throw you into this invigorating tale of Charlie Bone."

Sarah’s Stars Kids Reviews May 2007 – This month’s cover art – a kid drew the cover of Mr Gum and the Biscuit Billionaire by Andy Stanton – Egmont

Today’s Parent Magazine March 2007 – "Kids Rule!: When the Going Gets Tough, These Kids Get Tougher in Five Stories Where Children Outwit Their Elders" article in Family File Reviews featuring You’re a Bad Man, Mr Gum by Andy Stanton – Egmont "Funny, inviting text."

Deakin Newsletter of Children’s Literature April 2007 – Book review of Who Are You, Stripy Horse by Jim Helmore and Karen Wall – Egmont + colour image of cover "Here is a delightful, clever and appealing tale of a stripy horse tucked into a corner in a second hand store…. Bright, lively pictures depict the sympathetic and engaging characters… This is a good solid story well told, one that children will want to read again and again, and it is peopled by charming characters."

Hi-Rise Newspaper March 2007 –Books review of Seeker by William Nicholson – Egmont UK "It’s a dramatic tale, made all the more suspenseful because its characters are, as real people so often are, nicely unique and original, and their behaviour cannot always be predicted. This is the first of a trilogy, but has a satisfying ending of its own."

Winnipeg Free Press 17/12/06 – What’s On Winnipeg article "Debut Novel Wins Nestle Children’s Prize" article noting winner of award: The Diamond of Drury Lane by Julia Golding – Egmont

Creemore Echo 22/12/06 – "Some Ways to Keep the Kids Busy this Christmas" article featuring holiday titles: It’s Christmas: A Festive Lift-the-Flap Book, 100 Things to Do at Christmas, Step-by-Step Crafts for Winter, on Angels Wings by Quentin Blake – Egmont "With Christmas almost here it’s good to have festive things to keep excited children busy. Three books from Publishers Group Canada will do just that…. A nice children’s book from PGC is On Angel Wings…"

The Magazine (for kids) January 2007 –"Booky" section featuring Rift by Beverley Birch –Egmont "This tense mystery is made even more intense because of the setting in Africa and the different perspectives of the action offered by the police reports and letters."

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Sergeant Stubby

On seeing a photo of Sergeant Stubby, I immediately thought of Walter the Farting Dog. While Walter may have problems passing too much gas, Stubby - a WWI war dog - had problems being poisoned by gas. He was also shot at, granaded and bombed numerous times in his 18 months of trench warfare.

The bizarre and fantastic story of Sergeant Stubby is worthy of telling. Sergeant Stubby was a war dog in the 102nd Infantry, 26th Division during World War I. According to Wikipedia:

"He entered combat on February 5, 1918 at Chemin des Dames, north of Soissons, and was under constant fire, day and night for over a month. In April 1918, during a raid to take Schieprey, Stubby was wounded in the foreleg by the retreating Germans throwing hand grenades. He was sent to the rear for convalescence, and as he had done on the front was able to improve morale. When he recovered from his wounds, Stubby returned to the trenches. After being gassed himself, Stubby learned to warn his unit of poison gas attacks, located wounded soldiers in no man's land, and — since he could hear the whine of incoming artillery shells before humans could — became very adept at letting his unit know when to duck for cover. He was even solely responsible for capturing a German spy in the Argonne. Following the retaking Château-Thierry by the US, the thankful women of the town made Stubby a chamois coat on which were pinned his many medals. There is also a legend that while in Paris with Corporal Conroy, Stubby saved a young girl from being hit by a car. At the end of the war, Conroy smuggled Stubby home."
A photo of a taxidermied Stubby can be seen on the Smithsonian's website The Price of Freedom: Americans at War. More photos and a description of his service can be found at Governor's Foot Guard.


Some interesting facts about pigeons from Andrew Blechman's latest book Pigeons has led me to looking for some of my own.

- according to the Canadian Government, the biggest problem with pigeons is "...the tremendous amount of feces they produce."

- according to the British Government, we should not feed pigeons because "Food such as bread, cakes and buns give them diarrhoea...". Oh, dear, more of what the Canadian Government fears!

- you can sign up to be a PigeonWatcher and help the international study of feral pigeon colors.

- Cher Ami was a famous homing pigeon who was awarded the Croix de Guerre for his service during WWI. His enshrined remains are on display at the Smithsonian Institution along side Sergeant Stubby. More on Sergeant Stubby in another post.

Fall 2007 Catalogues

Our Fall 2007 Children's and Adult catalogues are in! To download a copy, go to