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Friday, July 1, 2016

An Ode To Canada (My Favourite Canadian Books)

Well, it is officially Canada's 149th Birthday today and I thought why not do a blog post celebrating some awesome books that take place in this beautiful country of mine. These are just a few of the books that take place in Canada and are, written by Canadians (whether by birth or by immigrating here). When I think of Canadian books these are the ones that come to mind for me because they are my favourites. I hope this post convinces you to give at least one of these Canadian books a try, and if you have read one of these (or more) tell me what you thought about it. To my fellow Canadians reading this, I hope you all have a safe and happy Canada day. 

 Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery  Set in Prince Edward Island this is one that I recommend to older and younger readers alike. Also, it's written by a Canadian as well.
"She'll have to go back." Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert had decided to adopt an orphan. They wanted a nice sturdy boy to help Matthew with the farm chores. The orphanage sent a girl instead - a mischievous, talkative redhead who the Cuthberts thought would be no use at all. But as soon as Anne arrived at the snug, white farmhouse called Green Gables, she knew she wanted to stay forever. And the longer Anne stayed, the harder it was for anyone to imagine Green Gables without her.

Still Life (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache#1) by Louise Penny 
This is a  cozy mystery novel set in a tiny fictional village of Quebec and written by a fellow Torontonian. If you like your mysteries slower paced, cozy but still intriguing I recommend it.
Winner of the New Blood Dagger, Arthur Ellis, Barry, Anthony, and Dilys awards.
Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec and his team of investigators are called in to the scene of a suspicious death in a rural village south of Montréal and yet a world away. Jane Neal, a long-time resident of Three Pines, has been found dead in the woods. The locals are certain it's a tragic hunting accident and nothing more but Gamache smells something foul this holiday season…and is soon certain that Jane died at the hands of someone much more sinister than a careless bowhunter.
With this award-winning first novel, Louise Penny introduces an engaging hero in Inspector Gamache, who commands his forces--and this series--with power, ingenuity, and charm.

 Damaged (Kate Lange #1) by Pamela Callow
This one is just a great all around thriller. I loved how gritty it was and how engrossing of a read it was. I also loved that it was set in Halifax, Nova Scotia and written by a Nova Scotian.
Haunted by the death of her sister and wounded by her ex-fiancé's accusations, Kate Lange throws herself into her new career at a high-powered law firm.
When the grandmother of a lonely private school student seeks her counsel, Kate thinks it's just another custody case. But then the teen is brutally murdered. And it isn't only Kate who wonders if her legal advice led to the girl's death.
Put on notice by Randall Barrett, the firm's charismatic managing partner, Kate must fight for her career, for her reputation—and for redemption.
Unwilling to live with the damage she may have caused, Kate pursues the case on her own and unearths some chilling facts.
Facts that lead straight to the heart of a legal conspiracy.
Facts that lead Kate directly into the surgically skilled hands of the Body Butcher.

 A Private Man (Max Dexter #1) by Chris Laing
Set in Hamilton, Ontario in 1947 and written by a native Hamiltonian this is a smaller press book that I absolutely loved for the authentic feel the author's voice gave this historical mystery. I recommend it for everyone loving mysteries set in the 40s.
In 1947, World War II veteran and former lawman Max Dexter opens his own detective agency in Hamilton, Ontario. Max and his assistant Isabel O'Brien are on the case from murder to money laundering and organized crime.

 Except the Dying (Detective Murdoch #1) by Maureen Jennings
This one is set here in my home town of Toronto in 1895 and is written by a a British Ex-Pat. It's a fantastic historical mystery that really brings the era and the city to life. This is also the series that the TV show is based on (a show which I love!) but be warned this is not exactly like the show but both are fantastic.
In the cold Toronto winter of 1895, the naked body of a servant girl is found frozen in a deserted laneway. The young victim was pregnant when she died. Detective William Murdoch soon discovers that many of those connected with the girl’s life have secrets to hide. Was her death an attempt to cover up a scandal in one of the city’s influential families?

 Creatures of the Rock by Andrew Peacock
This one is written by an Ontario native but chronicles (hilariously I might add), his life as a veterinarian in Newfoundland. It reminded me of James Herriot's All Creatures Great and Small and is one I recommend to any animal lover.
When Andrew Peacock made the move from Ontario to Newfoundland, he thought he was kicking off his career as a newly qualified veterinarian with an adventure in a temporary location. It was certainly an adventure--a whole series of adventures--but there was nothing temporary about it. He practiced in Newfoundland for nearly 30 years and is still living there. In fact, he has lived there so long, the locals are starting to think of him as one of them.
Creatures of the Rock chronicals a career spent working with and getting to know a rich variety of animals and their owners, on farms, in homes and in the wild. Andrew was the only vet for miles around. A day of practice could include anything from a Caesarian section on a cow in a blizzard to freeing a humpback whale from a trap designed for cod to capturing a polar bear after its surprise visit to a bingo parlor. And, on the human side, anything from trying to impress a surpringly large audience of farmers with your first boar castration, to taking care of a family just as well as its stricken cat, to discouraging farm hands from helping themselves to hypodermic needles. All this against the background of a domestic scene in which Andrew's wife Ingrid--also freshly qualified, as a doctor--shares the adventure of making a new life, and in due course of starting a family.
Told in a series of brief, endlessly engaging stories, Creatures of the Rock is a funny, thrilling, unflinching but ultimately heartwarming narrative about the connections between people and animals, and people with each other.



  1. The Anne books (and really everything by Montgomery with the exception of Pat) are some of my absolute favorites. Louise Penny is high on my TBR. Creatures of the Rock sounds interesting and must go on my TBR. I've seen the Murdoch Mysteries show listing but didn't realize it was Canadian.

    1. I hope you get to Creatures of the Rock soon, it is really cozy and funny to read :)

  2. What a wonderful way to celebrate Canada's birthday! I love Anne of Green Gables, have the the Louise Penny mystery series on my to-read list, and would probably enjoy the Murdock Mysteries, though I may just watch them instead. And Creatures of the Rock is going on my TBR list right now, because I love Herriot!

  3. One of my favorite Canadian books growing up was Hatchet. Such a exciting book. They even made a movie out of it

    1. I haven't read that one since I was a kid but I remember not liking it very much, but I know you love it.

  4. Hmm not read any of them. I have a few Canadian authors I read but most write historicals for some reason so not set in Canada. Huh! lol

      sorry for the caps, but it does. I was talking to a few Canadian authors that I know and they say that they've had books rejected for being set here as they don't offer a wide enough appeal. I think that's crazy personally.

  5. So glad to hear from another Canadian book blogger.
    The Canadian books are often overlooked.


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