Habit Binge

36 Canadian books coming out in October we can’t wait to read | CBC Books


A new month means new books! Here are the Canadian releases coming out in October we can’t wait to read!

The Cine Star Salon is a novel by Leah Ranada. (NeWest Press)

In The Cine Star Salon, Phillippine-born Vancouverite Sophia is grateful for two things, her hair salon and for her mild-mannered fiancé Adrian. She can’t wait to get married and move away from her parents, who want their daughter to be more than just a beautician. One day, her estranged friend reaches out from Manila, desperate for Sophia to help save her auntie’s Cine Star Salon, where she first wanted to become a salon owner and hairstylist. But Sophia worries that coming to her auntie’s aid could reopen old wounds and threaten her future. 

When you can read it: Oct. 1, 2021

Leah Ranada was born in the Philippines and moved to Canada in 2006. She attended The Writer’s Studio at Simon Fraser University in 2013. Her work has been published in On Spec, Room, Scarlet Leaf Review, and elsewhere. Ranada lives in New Westminster, B.C.

Dying for Attention is a comic by Susan MacLeod. (Conundrum Press)

Dying for Attention is a graphic memoir by Susan MacLeod about nursing home care. When MacLeod accompanied her 90-year-old mother through long-term care, it was a nine-year journey navigating a very cold system. The book also includes tips for communicating with nursing homes as well as background research.

When you can read it: Oct. 1, 2021

MacLeod is an artist and writer. Her illustrations have been published by Kaiser Permanente, Halifax Magazine and the Globe and Mail. 

Pandemic Spotlight: Canadian Doctors at the Front of the COVID-19 Fight is a book by Ian Hanomansing. (Douglas & McIntyre/CBC)

One of the most remarkable features of the COVID-19 pandemic are the previously low-profile doctors who took to the public stage with strength and compassion to lead Canada through the pandemic. They counteracted misinformation and gave the most up-to-date medical advice on avoiding infection. In Pandemic Spotlight, Ian Hanomansing profiles Canadian doctors, such as Dr. Bonnie Henry, Dr. Zain Chagla and Dr. Sumon Chakrabati, who stepped up to guide the nation through its worst medical crisis in a century.

When you can read it: Oct. 2, 2021

Hanomansing is a host and reporter who has been a journalist for more than 30 years. He currently co-hosts The National and is an interim host on CBC Radio’s Cross Country Checkup.

Binge is a short story collection by Douglas Coupland. (Random House Canada)

Binge contains 60 stories about the way we live and Douglas Coupland’s existential worry about how we should be living, which is the very thing that made him an influential writer. Inspired by the way we write about ourselves and our experiences in online forums, Coupland creates characters we can all relate to. 

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Coupland is a writer, visual artist and designer who lives in Vancouver. He has authored 14 novels, two collections of short stories and eight nonfiction books. He’s a recipient of the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Literary Excellence. His artwork has been exhibited in The Vancouver Art Gallery, The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art and The Royal Ontario Museum.

A Tale of Two Omars is a book by Omar Sharif Jr. (Catapult Press, Thomas Synnamon)

Omar Sharif Jr.’s name always protected him wherever he went, until he made the difficult decision to come out in the pages of The Advocate. He knew his life would never be the same, but he didn’t expect the backlash that followed. He endured bullying, illness, attempted suicide, becoming a victim of sex trafficking, death threats by the thousands, and never being able to return to a country he once called home. Drawing on the lessons he learned from both sides of his family, A Tale of Two Omars charts the course of an unconventional life, revealing in the process the struggles and successes of a public journey of self-acceptance and a life dedicated in service to others.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Sharif Jr. is an Egyptian Canadian actor and model who lives in the U.S. He is the grandson of actor Omar Sharif. He is widely considered to be the first openly gay person in the Arab world.

The Bjorkan Sagas is a novel by Harold Johnson. (Calvin Fehry, House of Anansi Press)

Myth, fantasy and history are merged in The Bjorkan Sagas, an epic saga of exploration and adventure. This trio of sagas follows three Bjorkans, led by Juha the storyteller, who leave their valley to discover what lies beyond its borders. They meet a devious story-trader, gun-toting aliens searching for heaven and Lilly, a medicine woman. Juha must protect his people from invaders who plan on stealing the valley’s secrets, while Lilly travels across the universe to help Juha and the Bjorkans, who are facing their deadliest enemy yet.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Harold R. Johnson has written five works of fiction and five works of nonfiction, including Firewater: How Alcohol is Killing My People (and Yours), which was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Nonfiction. He served in the Canadian Navy and was a Crown prosecutor. He lives in Saskatchewan.

An Embarrassment of Critch’s is a book by Mark Critch. (Viking, Aaron McKenzie Fraser)

An Embarrassment of Critch’s is the second memoir by Canadian comedian Mark Critch. It follows Critch’s journey from Newfoundland to the national stage and back again. Critch’s earliest acting gigs was in a Newfoundland tourist production. Since then, he’s found more opportunities to take his show on the road. He revisits some of his career’s biggest moments in this memoir, revealing all the things that have happened along the way.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Critch is a Canadian comedian. For 14 years, he has starred on CBC’s flagship show, This Hour has 22 Minutes. He’s the host of CBC’s Halifax Comedy Festival and has written for and appeared in CBC’s Just for Laughs series. He is also the author of the memoir Son of a Critch.

Off the Record is a book by Peter Mansbridge. (Simon & Schuster, CBC)

Peter Mansbridge is one of the most recognized faces and voices in Canadian news, and he’s finally sharing his story in a new memoir. Off the Record chronicles his 50-year career, from hosting a local late night music program in Manitoba to becoming the chief correspondent and anchor of The National. He shares never-before-told stories from his career, including reporting on the fall of the Berlin Wall and the horror of 9/11, walking the beaches of Normandy and talking with Canadian prime ministers.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Mansbridge is the former chief correspondent for CBC News, anchor of The National, where he worked for 30 years and host of Mansbridge One on One. He is also the author of the Peter Mansbridge One on One: Favourite Conversations and the Stories Behind Them and co-author of Extraordinary Canadians: Stories from the Heart of Our Nation.

The Whisper on the Night Wind is a book by Adam Shoalts (Adam Shoalts, Allen Lane)

In the early 1900s, the isolated little settlement of Traverspine, a place you will not find on most maps, was the scene of an extraordinary haunting by large creatures none could identify. Strange tracks were found in the woods and cries were heard in the night. Sled dogs went missing and children reported being stalked by a terrifying grinning animal. As a result, families slept with their cabin doors barred and weapons by their bedsides. Explorer Adam Shoalts picks up the trail left by eye-witness accounts and sets off into the Labrador wild to investigate the tale. He chronicles what he finds in The Whisper on the Night Wind.

When you can read it: Oct. 5, 2021

Shoalts has been called one of Canada’s greatest living explorers. In 2018, was named an explorer-in-residence of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. He has written three…


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