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The Chat with Rawi Hage

Hage, Rawi -- credit Babak Salari

TREVOR CORKUM cropped

Rawi Hage’s latest—the 2018 Scotiabank Giller Prize-longlisted Beirut Hellfire Society—follows the story of an undertaker’s son during Lebanon’s Civil War.

Quill & Quire calls Beirut Hellfire Society “a novel of tragic beauty and dark humour that is comfortable with contradiction and charged with probing philosophical insights and the luminosity of Arabic poetry. It’s a timeless story of the outcast whose act of witness chronicles the world he observes.”

Rawi Hage was born in Beirut, Lebanon. He immigrated to Canada in 1992 and now lives in Montreal. His first novel, De Niro’s Game, won the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Governor General’s Literary Award. Cockroach was the winner of the Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction and a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award. It was also shortlisted for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Award and the Scotiabank Giller Prize. His third novel, Carnival, was a finalist for the Writers’ Trust Award and won the P …

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New Lit Wish List: All the Art Books

To start off this week's Lit Wish List, we asked Jeannette Montgomery from M Gallery|Book in Penticton BC to recommend 5 great books with images as their focus. But of course, her selections are only just the beginning. Please add your own suggestions in the comments below.

Wind River Variations by Brian Brett, Illustrated Poetry, and Photography by Fritz Mueller

The collaboration between Brett and Mueller, in this book, is based on a decade-long friendship and their exploration together of the Wind River. Prose and images combine to tell a story greater than their individual parts.

 

 

 

 

Jacques Hurtubise, edited by Sarah Fillmore

Through his five-decade career, Jacques Hurtubise has been an artist redefining for Canadians that which is continually evolving: the definition of Canadian art. The book is bilingual, making it an interesting storytelling (or storyreading) experience; the same thing can rarely be said in two languages.

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In Conversation With: Julie Booker on photography and how to frame a story. (cc: @houseofanansi)

Julie-Booker-author-of-Up-Up-Up

I recently met up with Julie Booker, author of the short story collection Up, Up, Up (House of Anansi). After an hour of talking, we realized we'd stumbled upon an interesting topic, how to match the right storytelling tools to the right story. In particular, I was interested in Julie's travel photography. We decided to pick up the chat here, and what begins as a conversation about photography becomes a pleasantly-meandering exploration into how we gather our stories, place ourselves within them, and ultimately decide what to keep and what (and how) to share the rest.

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Julie Wilson: A few months ago, I learned that you're an accomplished photographer. When I first saw your photos, I said to your husband, Denis De Klerck (Mansfield Press), "I didn't know Julie's a photographer." He replied, "I don't know that she thinks of herself as one." I thought it was interesting, that artistic talent is not necessarily akin to artistic pursuit. Or, possibly, it's a matter of using the right tools for the right story. So, let's begin there. Is photography a way to document your travels or a frame in which to tell the stories of your travels?

Julie Booker: I began travelling alone in my 20s because I wanted to bust out of my small, safe life. I started with a few summers bac …

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