The new Canadian Notes & Queries arrived in the post a couple of days ago. The first colour issue – after forty-eight years in glorious black, white and grey – 'tis truly a thing of beauty.
My contribution, this season's Dusty Bookcase on paper, was inspired by the centenary of Ted Allan's birth this past January. The Gazette did not recognize, but I did. Of all the Allan titles in my collection, the focus of the column was the one that had remained unread: Don't You Know Anybody Else? It's a slim volume of short stories, published in the wake of Allan's fraudulent Stephen Leacock Medal win. Disturbing, though perhaps not so much as his original Love is a Long Shot, Don't You Know Anybody Else? it is one of those books sold as something it is not.
In the same issue, I've contributed to a new feature: "What's Old: Notable CanLit reissues & offerings from the country's antiquarian booksellers". Still more retro goodness is to be found in Stephen Fowler's exhumation of Let's All Hate Toronto, a "narration, illustration and exhortation" by Jack McLaren.
Wish I could join in, but I can't... our daughter was born there. God Bless Women's College Hospital, I say!
Other contributors include:
Mark CallananPeter DubéAlison GilmourAmanda JerniganShaena LambertColette MaitlandDavid MasonShane NeilsonDiane ObomsawinLaura RitlandPatricia RobertsonAnakana SchofieldSethPatricia SmartJ.C. SutciffeBruce Whiteman
Finally, it would be a great mistake to not mention Jason Dickson's interview with bookseller and poet Nelson Ball. I've drawn on Nelson's extensive knowledge of obscure CanLit so very many times in writing the Dusty Bookcase; what's more, he has provided me with many of the books covered here over the years. Just last week, Nelson sent me these two by Kenneth Orvis, the subject of a future CNQ Dusty Bookcase.
How's that for a tease?
Subscriptions to Canadian Notes & Queries can be purchased through this link.