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Belletrista - A site promoting translated women authored literature from around the world

New & Notable
Whether you are a seasoned reader of international literature or a reader just venturing out beyond your own literary shores, we know you will find our New and Notable section a book browser's paradise! Reading literature from around the world has a way of opening up one's perspective to create as vast a world within us as there is without. Here are more than 50 new or notable books we hope will bring the world to you. Remember—depending on what country you are shopping in, these books might be sold under slightly different titles or ISBNs, in different formats or with different covers; or be published in different months. However, the author's name is always likely to be the same!


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Wendy McGrath

What is real when seen through the eyes of a child? When does the harshness of reality transform idyllic memories? The young narrator of Santa Rosa seeks the answers to these questions as she tries to make sense of the disintegration of her parents' marriage—a process echoed by the slow disintegration of their neighborhood.

In subtle poetic prose, Wendy McGrath evokes afternoons at the fair captured in overexposed photographs and a family's disquieting day at the beach as moments that exist apart from time, in a place where every sense is heightened, and where every memory is sharpened as if in a lucid dream where understanding lies just beyond reach.

Wendy McGrath was born in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. Her poetry and short fiction has been published in numerous publications. Her previous novel, Recurring Fictions, was released through the University of Alberta Press in 2002.

Newest Press, paperback, 9782897126813

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Lorna Crozier

A volume of poignant recollections by one of Canada's most celebrated poets, Small Beneath the Sky is a tender, unsparing portrait of a family and a place.

Lorna Crozier vividly depicts her hometown of Swift Current, with its one main street, two high schools, and three beer parlors—where her father spent most of his evenings. She writes unflinchingly about the grief and shame caused by poverty and alcoholism. At the heart of the book is Crozier's fierce love for her mother, Peggy. The narratives of daily life—sometimes funny, sometimes heartbreaking —are interspersed with prose poems. Lorna Crozier approaches the past with a tactile sense of discovery, tracing her beginnings with a poet's precision and an open heart.

Greystone Books, paperback, 9781553655770 (March)

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Kathy Page

Anna Silowski, highly-educated, driven and successful, works as a curator in a prestigious paleontological museum; Scott Macleod dropped out of school, has a confused relationship with his native roots, and an alcoholic father in tow. She, it seems, is at the top of her game; he does not even know what his might be. A day's prospecting leads Anna to make an extraordinary discovery in the remote part of BC where Scott lives. As the tensions below the surface of her successful career are exposed, Anna, who has for years carried terrifying knowledge that she feels she must keep secret 'almost from herself', is pushed toward breakdown. She finds herself unexpectedly dependent on Scott; recruited to help on the excavation she is heading, he is soon way out of his depth. The excavation itself teeters on the edge of disaster. What can be salvaged? Has Anna used Scott? Will he abandon her? What is the nature of the bond between them?

McArthur & Company, paperback, 9781552788370 (April)

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Mary Rose Donnelly

Retired schoolteacher Flossy O'Reilly feels the whisper of death at her back. It is in her home in Great Village, Nova Scotia where she is surrounded by piles of books. It is beside her as she gazes out over the shore with her lifelong friend Mealie. It walks with her into the village, while details of the distant past return to her with startling clarity. With worsening chest pains, exacerbated by the arrival of an unwelcome teenager, she fully expects her life is ebbing away. She must finally confront the deceptions and shame of the long-hidden past.

Mary Rose Donnelly is a journalist, editor, and full-time gardener. Like Flossy O'Reilly, she counts Virginia Woolf, Elizabeth Bishop, and William Shakespeare among her favourite authors. She has lived in France and Peru, but calls Canada home. In 1992 she published Katharine: A Biography of Dr. Katharine Boehner Hockin. Great Village is her first novel.

Cormorant Books, paperback, 9781770860025 (March)

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Julie Booker

Up Up Up heralds the arrival of a writer of astonishing range, compassion and acuity. In this taut collection of twenty short, sharp stories Julie Booker grabs the reins from writers like Lydia Millet and Miranda July and takes off at full speed, and in directions all her own. A pair of plus-sized friends make tracks for a kayaking trip in Alaska. A woman vacations with her parents at a Texas trailer park, wondering why she can't meet a man. A worldly member of a tour group selects sacrifices from among the most cherished belongings of her fellow travellers. A young man dreams of rescuing an abusive friend's girlfriend—and of having her for himself. Through these deceptively simple storylines, Booker reminds us of the power of words to enlighten and move us—but most of all, to delight us. Her writing is a revelation—wildly whimsical and yet razor-sharp, highly unusual and yet prompting gasps of recognition on every page. Reader, prepare to meet your new favourite writer.

House of Anansi Press, paperback, 9780887843006

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Linda Hutsell-Manning

In 1955, two fifteen-year-olds with immeasurable optimism shared a summer working as waitresses in the small town of Franklin's flourishing Britannia Hotel. Forty years later, Hannah, now a successful teacher with a younger lover, rushes home from Toronto to find her mother in hospital while Colleen, still in Franklin and married with five children, copes with her alcoholic father. Both women try to deal with the pain and guilt of admitting their parents to the local nursing home.

Meanwhile, an ambitious young reporter has begun to chronicle the Britannia Hotel's history and has uncovered the mysterious unsolved death of Charlie Eliott in the summer of 1955. It's time for Hannah and Colleen to finally talk about what they witnessed that summer in Franklin. They owe it to the memory of Charlie, a gentle soul who worked as a handyman at the hotel and made everyone's lives easier that summer. By rescuing Charlie's story from obscurity both women find a sense of peace with their own lives and the decisions they've made.

Linda Hutsell-Manning's writing career spans thirty years and includes poetry, plays, children's television, short fiction and novels. Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Linda now lives near Cobourg, Ontario.

Second Story Press, paperback, 9781897187890

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Eden Robinson

In March 2010 the Canadian Literature Centre hosted award-winning novelist and storyteller Eden Robinson at the 4th annual Henry Kreisel Lecture. Robinson shared an intimate look into the intricacies of family, culture, and place through her talk, "The Sasquatch at Home." Robinson's disarming honesty and wry irony shine through her depictions of her and her mother's trip to Graceland, the potlatch where she and her sister received their Indian names, how her parents first met in Bella Bella (Waglisla, British Columbia) and a wilderness outing where she and her father try to get a look at b'gwus, the Sasquatch. Readers of memoir, Canadian literature, Aboriginal history and culture, and fans of Robinson's delightful, poignant, sometimes quirky tales will love The Sasquatch at Home.

Eden Robinson is the internationally acclaimed author of Traplines, Monkey Beach, and Blood Sports. Traplines was the winner of the New York Times Notable Book of the Year and Britain's Winifred Holtby Memorial Prize. Monkey Beach was nominated for the Giller Prize, the 2000 Governor General's Award for Fiction, and was selected as the Globe and Mail's Editor's Choice. Robinson is a member of the Haisla and Heiltsuk First Nations.

University of Alberta Press, paperback, 9780888645593