Es­says ex­am­ine is­sues of mother­hood

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - BOOKS - By Bob Arm­strong

TORONTO book blog­ger Kerry Clare had al­ready in­ter­viewed a pretty hefty per­cent­age of Canada’s fe­male writ­ers for her pop­u­lar blog, Pickle Me This, when she be­gan work on her new book, The M Word: Con­ver­sa­tions About Mother­hood. So it’s not sur­pris­ing that so many of them chose to con­trib­ute to the just-launched collection of es­says on the sub­ject. The book cov­ers a wide range of mother­hood ex­pe­ri­ences, in­clud­ing adop­tion, in-vitro fer­til­iza­tion, mis­car­riage, death, hav­ing twins and the de­ci­sion not to be­come a mother. Clare will read from the collection, pub­lished by Goose Lane, dur­ing a Win­nipeg book tour stop, along­side two of the book’s Win­nipeg-based con­trib­u­tors: poets Ariel Gor­don and Kerry Ryan. The event takes place at McNally Robin­son Book­sellers Tues­day at 7 p.m. Win­nipeg lit­er­ary mag­a­zine Prairie Fire cel­e­brates 35 years of pub­lish­ing fic­tion, po­etry, cre­ative non-fic­tion and crit­i­cism this year at its an­nual Speak­ing Vol­umes fundrais­ing din­ner. The event, held at Fort Gi­bral­tar (866 rue St Joseph) at the Fes­ti­val du Voyageur grounds, fea­tures the ex­pected (read­ings by poets Méira Cook and Kris­tian En­right) and the un­ex­pected (a hatchet-throw­ing con­test). The fun be­gins at 6 p.m., May 10. Tick­ets are avail­able from Prairie Fire, at 204-943-9066 or through the web­site (prairiefire.ca). Books may not be the first thing to come to mind when the name Moose Jaw comes up, but this week might just change that. The south­ern Saskatchewan city of 35,000 has been named the first-ever Read­ing Town Canada as part of a part­ner­ship be­tween the Na­tional Read­ing Cam­paign and the an­nual Saskatchewan Fes­ti­val of Words, and will host a va­ri­ety of read­ing events un­til May 10. The Read­ing Town Canada pro­mo­tion cel­e­brates read­ing in one com­mu­nity in Canada, with a week of read­ings, book give­aways and a pro­mo­tion in which ev­ery pizza de­liv­ered in the city will also come with a poem. Moose Jaw is al­ready host to the Saskatchewan Fes­ti­val of Words, a sum­mer­time fes­ti­val that draws an im­pres­sive ar­ray of writ­ers from all gen­res. A 700-page aca­demic trea­tise on eco­nom­ics called Cap­i­tal in the Twen­ty­First Century is gen­er­at­ing plenty of cap­i­tal and even more pub­lic­ity. Har­vard Univer­sity Press an­nounced in late April that it was or­der­ing six more print­ings of the book, which had sold 78,000 copies since its March 10 re­lease. Two print­ings each are bound for the U.S., Europe and In­dia, where it’s be­ing launched this month. The prod­uct of ex­ten­sive re­search by French econ­o­mist Thomas Piketty, Cap­i­tal in the Twenty-First Century ex­am­ines ris­ing wealth in­equal­ity and the ten­dency of economies as they ma­ture to re­ward own­ers of cap­i­tal rather than the work­ers they em­ploy. Its sales have grown steadily fol­low­ing high-pro­file re­views in the New York Times, the New Yorker and other ma­jor me­dia. Fall has tra­di­tion­ally been the sea­son for lit­er­ary fes­ti­vals in Canada, but as more pub­lish­ers are launch­ing books in the spring, more lit­er­ary cel­e­bra­tions have been pop­ping up at this time of year. The Win­nipeg In­ter­na­tional Writ­ers’ Fes­ti­val is part­ner­ing with McNally Robin­son Book­sellers this month to launch a sea­son of read­ings and con­ver­sa­tions about writ­ing, en­ti­tled the Spring Lit­er­ary Se­ries. The first event in the se­ries runs Wed­nes­day at 7 p.m. It’s the Win­nipeg stop on the Brick Books Cross Canada Po­etry Tour, fea­tur­ing launches of new books by four West Coast-based poets: Karen Enns, Joanna Lil­ley, Jane Munro and Ar­leen Paré.

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