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Book Trade

Book Trade

Bestseller Lists: Are They Good for Anything?

In a world where superfluous information is increasingly torrential, what could possibly be of less interest to more people than the bestseller list? Weekly, monthly or annually, this is a list of statistics that really can’t be significant to...

Happier Finessing a Sentence than Kneeling at the Deep Fryer

A writer should have a talent for complaining. It’s the nature of the job: the restaurant review, the analysis of military spending, and the tell-all memoir are all various forms of kvetching. But no one wants to hear us complain about writing...

A Sticky Situation for 2013 Canada Reads

The unveiling last week of the five titles vying for the 2013 version of Canada Reads inspired more than the usual misgivings.

One is hesitant to criticize anything that brings attention to books and reading, but Canada Reads has always,...

How to Attend a Book Launch

First off, I know from book launches. Because our store is such a centrally located and welcoming space, and because we have a reputation for being willing to host (or sell books at) even the most unpromising book events, we get to see a lot of...

Serendipity Machines: The “Biblio-Mat” Sells $2 Delights

Stephen Fowler, the proprietor of Toronto’s beloved secondhand bookshop The Monkey’s Paw, tells me he’s a little overwhelmed as I walk into his store Tuesday morning. “We were on BoingBoing! And CBC!” he says, summing...

The Worst of the Best of

With Old Man Winter breathing down our necks, and the first strains of Christmas Muzak filtering in through tinny supermarket speakers, the end of the year is suddenly on my mind. Which means I’m already dreading the Best Books of 2012 lists. I...

The Giller Prize: Thanks Jack

At a certain point this Tuesday night, Jack Rabinovitch will step up to the microphone in front of a packed ballroom and a national television audience and recall sitting down with his friend Mordecai Richler and coming up with the idea of...

Authors and Company

Will Schwalbe was in town this weekend to promote his new book The End of Your Life Book Club, and I caught up with him Sunday morning, in a crowd of 150 book lovers who’d negotiated the marathon-tangled streets of the metropolis to...

The Literary Award That Goes Boom

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for the annual explosion of money and seemingly inevitable controversy, the Nobel Prizes. Once we get through the awards for things that hardly anyone knows anything about but are incredibly important, like...

Book Awards and Trial by Jury

“Surprised” is not a word that should readily spring to the lip when the shortlist for a literary prize is announced. “Appalled” works. “Disappointed” will do. (Last year’s Booker shortlist was considered so lowbrow that a certain infuriated...