Talking to a Portrait
Rosalind Pepall

The unexpected turns and obsessions of a curator's job.

This is a collection of stories about art works--whether an oil portrait, a wilderness explorer's sketchbook or a Tiffany lamp--and how the author fell under their spell. Few people are aware of the work, the emotion, and the obsessions of a curator's job. Exhibitions come and go; they are forgotten after a few years, but they live on in the curator's memory.

In these fifteen essays we encounter artists falling in and out of love, family tragedies, the creation of the Stanley Cup, the secrets of Tiffany, Antiques Roadshow, a rootless baroness, the design craze for aluminum, small Japanese boxes called kogos, watercolour sketchbooks of the Canadian north, a beautiful prayer room in Montreal, gondolas flying through windows in Venice, and Moscovites who love Goldfinger.

Pepall’s stories sparkle with clarity and leave one with a sense that art is an amazing, worthwhile, occasionally mysterious human activity.

Archival black and white photographs and colour plates—including Edwin Holgate’s Ludivine, one of the most beloved and recognizable Canadian portraits ever painted—make this book a must-have for art lovers, students, academics, museum-goers and readers interested in the role art plays in the creation of our lives.
Resisting Canada
Nyla Matuk

The poems included in Resisting Canada address, among other things, Indigenous agency, cultural belonging, environmental anxieties, and racial privilege. These poems ask us to judge and resist a statecraft that refuses to acknowledge past and present wrongs. Think of Resisting Canada as a poetic letter to Canada’s politicians and leaders.

Resisting Canada gathers together 28 poets for a conversation bigger than poetic trends. Its organizing principle is Canada—the Canada that established residential schools; the Canada grappling with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission; the Canada that has been visible in its welcome of Syrian refugees, yet the not-always-tolerant place where the children of those refugees will grow up; the Canada eager to re-establish its global leadership on the environment while struggling to acknowledge Indigenous sovereignty on resource-rich land and enabling further colonization of that land. In the face of global conflicts due to climate change, scarcity, mass migrations, and the rise of xenophobic populisms, Canada still works with a surface understanding of its democratic values—both at their noblest and most deceptive.

The poets:
Jordan Abel
James Arthur
Marie Annharte Baker
Billy-Ray Belcourt
Wayde Compton
Beth Cuthand
Rosanna Deerchild
Marilyn Dumont
Marvin FrancisLouise
Bernice Halfe-Sky Dancer
Jim Johnstone
El Jones
Christine Leclerc
Canisia Lubrin
Lee Maracle
Sachiko Murakami
Arleen Paré
Michael Prior
Shane Rhodes
Janet Rogers
Armand Garnet Ruffo
Ingrid Ruthig
Gregory A. Scofield
Leanne Betasamosake Simpson
Karen Solie
Moez Surani
Derek Webster
Rita Wong
Versus
William Vallières

From Montreal's metro stations and streets to pastoral mise-en-scènes, William Vallières' first book, Versus, is a lyric bildungsroman filled with portraits of seduction and infatuation, loneliness and buried shame. "What yesterday had fought to bud / Is stunted under ice today." These are darkly canny poems about childhood, familial histories, lost love and the weariness of spending one's "being being / Everything I'm against." Deftly crafted, intense and compact, with barbed insights arrived at through verbal twists and syntactic half-turns, Vallières' voice is entirely his own.
The Outer Wards
Sadiqa de Meijer

Maternal love and duty disrupted by illness.

The Outer Wards, Sadiqa de Meijer’s new collection, explores questions of maternal love and duty—and the powerlessness that comes with the disruption of that role through illness. “I was awake. / The hour was wrong,” de Meijer writes, and her poems track, in visceral and tender detail, the distraction, exhaustion, exhilaration, and fear of child-rearing through crisis. For de Meijer, the experience was also a crisis of language, and the struggle to find new terms for her state. Addressed, in part, to a child she calls “my grievous spectacle, / my dearest unpossessable,” The Outer Wards is everywhere marked by a joy in words—their quick-fire turns, sumptuous sounds, and nursery-rhyme seductions.
The Gang of Four
Sheila Kindellan-Sheehan

The nightmare began on a warm summer night. A six-year-old boy was found in a park shack, bludgeoned to death in the quiet residential district of Montreal's Notre-Dame-de-Grâce. Soon after, an eight-year-old boy disappeared. Horror and fear gripped the city. Neighbourhoods went silent. Suspects were questioned, suspicion and alarm mounts. No arrests were ever made.

When Lieutenant Detective Damiano discovers the cold case many years later and learns that the three suspects are still alive, she's hooked, on what cops call a Detective's Case. Her partner, Detective Pierre Matte, hesitantly agrees to work with her. They meet Kathryn Flynn, the ninety-year-old mother, who has kept meticulous files throughout the years--her hope has never faltered. Damiano and Matte rediscover what binds them, a reckoning for the murderers among us and justice for the victims who have no voice.
Press

On Resisting Canada:
"Resisting Canada

On The Gang of Four:
"The Gang of Four is the story of a mother’s love and perseverance to uncover the fate of her first-born son amid secrets buried deep in Montreal’s past. While those secrets are being uncovered, we see how decades of guilt have followed the actual gang of four, affecting every facet of their lives from childhood to parenthood with seemingly no way out. This is Kindellan-Sheehan’s finest work yet." - Sonali Karnick, host of All in a Weekend,

On Dominoes at the Crossroads:
"This is more than a book of linked short stories with Black Canadians as its subject. Dominoes at the Crossroads

News

Dominoes in Translation!

We are pleased to announce that Kaie Kellough’s Dominoes at the Crossroads will be published in French by our colleagues at Éditions du Boréal.

Congratulations David Homel!
David Homel's novel The Teardown is the winner of the 2019 QWF-Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction. The awards were presented on November 5 at the Lion d'Or.

#NationalIndigenousPeoplesDay
Zebedee Nungak: “The need to correct the forced imposition of extinguishment and surrender of Aboriginal rights to establish agreements between governments and Indigenous peoples is still outstanding, unfinished business.” bit.ly/2ZxVFHm

BRAVO ROBIN
We're chuffed that Robin Richardson won the 2019 Trillium Book Award for her poetry collection Sit How You Want. Kudos also to her Signal Editions editor, Carmine Starnino.FOUNDER OF POETRY SERIES HONOURED BY MCGILL
Michael Harris was given an Honorary Doctorate (D.Litt., honoris causa) by McGill University on June 3rd, in the main for his contribution to the world of poetry as founder/editor of the Signal Editions poetry imprint of Vehicule Press.
Discover

In Periodicities’ fifth series of videos, Sadiqa de Meijer reads a few poems from her new book, The Outer Wards. Click here

Read “The Silence of A.M. Klein,” an incisive essay by our editor Carmine Starnino in the April issue of The New Criterion.

Mary Dalton, Poet Laureate of St. John's NL, reads poems from Red Ledger on the Flahoolic podcast: "Leo" & "Ship Inn" and "Cape Spear" & "The Boat".

Listen to Zebedee Nungak, Ulrikke S. Gernes, and Morten Stroksnes discuss the meaning of North on CBC Ideas.



SODEC, Québec  Canada Council for the Arts Canadian Heritage
The Canada Council
Véhicule Press acknowledges the generous support of its publishing program from the Book Publishing Industry Development Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage, The Canada Council for the Arts, and the Société de développement des entreprises culturelles du Québec (SODEC).