The new book is out--Come Cold River, a memoir in poetry--and an older book, The Lizard Cage, a novel of Burma, is up to be chosen as a CBC CANADA READS book. Feel free to vote for The Lizard Cage http://www.cbc.ca/books/canadareads/2013/10/canad-areads-top-40-vote-for-the-top-10.html here. The Lizard Cage takes place in a prison in Burma during the 90's, and recounts how the lives of three prison dwellers intersect and change each other. Teza, a political prisoner, exerts a profound influence on both a child labourer and a high-ranking jailer. The New York Times compared this novel to the works of Orwell and Solzenitsyn, and a Globe and Mail reviewer wrote that it was ' one of the best Canadian novels." And, you know, there are 39 other excellent books to vote for as well . . .
Yes, CBC Reads is a ridiculous popularity contest, but seeing as I was never popular in high school, it seems that I am willing, still, to put myself out there and try and get on the basketball team. Undoubtedly a serious mistake. The thing is, writers have lost so many sources on income in the last few years (ha! including the income from their books!) that we all have to do what we have to do. Selling family heirlooms, first born sons, trawling for Canada Reads votes . ..