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Books & Lit


Librarian in Residence: New year, new skills

Jessica Green is a book addict and library card holder since the age of 3. She’s a librarian at the Ottawa Public Library and currently the Apartment613 Librarian-in-Residence, sharing a compendium of literary thoughts and tips. Ottawa is a very crafty place and only seems to be getting more so the longer I live here. […]


Write On Ottawa: Human by S.M. Carrière

Post by Laurie Stewart. Human is the story of Aleksandar Svetoslav, a centuries old vampire from Eastern Europe. He’s sent to America to rebuild the territory of the last Prince and his House, after he and his entire line are slaughtered by vampire hunters. The story begins with Aleksandar’s rescue and conversion in the face […]


Write On Ottawa: A tale of a tenacious sleuth who lets nothing stop her

Review by Molly O’Connor. A fast paced mystery with likable characters, Journey of a Thousand Steps is a valiant effort as a debut novel. Naya, the protagonist, immediately grabs the reader’s attention: she is an unusual sleuth, since she has mobility issues. Author Madona Skaff-Koren, and her protagonist, Naya, both have multiple sclerosis (MS).  Skaff-Koren describes the […]


Write On Ottawa: An appreciation of an industrious symbol of Canada

Review by Molly O’Connor. In his book Dam Builders, Michael Runtz brings the world of beavers into sharp focus.  Dam Builders is a narrative, a documentary, a photo essay and a testament to his passion for his industrious subject. Right from the introduction, the reader becomes aware that this is more than a biologist conveying his knowledge […]

coming of age

Write On Ottawa: A Mechanicsville coming of age story

Review by Greg Guevara, a human being who wastes the majority of his time and money in university. He has what could hypothetically pass as a blog at Inbreak. The teenager. A fascinating yet oft-misunderstood creature ruled, some say, by 1 part logic, 2 parts emotion, and 3 parts hormones. It is difficult to find a […]

Saving Her Cover

Write On Ottawa: Saving Her pulls readers inexorably along

Review by Rem Westland. Amazing. For fifteen minutes or so I tried to think of something deeper to say, more reflective of – and complimentary towards – the sober and rational mind I believe myself to have. I kept circling back to that single word. I was stuck on it. Christian McPherson’s latest novel, Saving […]


Write On Ottawa: A tale of writing, aging and public service work

A local writer with over twelve books in her bibliography, Ruth Latta is no stranger to the literary arts. And, perhaps taking the advice of that old chestnut “write what you know,” Latta’s latest novel Most of All deals primarily with the challenges of writing. Set in Ottawa, the narrative describes the chance meeting and […]


Write On Ottawa: Hard-boiled comedy in McGinnis’s Stark Nakid

Joseph Hutt is a freelance writer and editor in Ottawa, and a radio host on CKCU. You can find links to his various endeavours on his website, at Stark Nakid, Sean McGinnis‘s debut novel released by Aylmer-based Deux Voiliers Publishing, starts off just like any other hard-boiled detective story: with murder… That being said, […]


Write On Ottawa: A world of vampires, aliens and magic

When, I ask you, was the last time you read a book that started with an alien abduction? No pointless preamble, no meaningless interactions between characters we’ll never care about, no killing time for the sake of pacing. Just the simple horror that comes to a young boy as he awakes to find himself surrounded […]

All photos by Kelly Hotte.

Black Squirrel Books celebrates Bookmas

Amidst yummy treats, friendly chatter, and the smell of freshly ground coffee,  the first annual Bookmas was held this past Saturday (December 19th) at Black Squirrel Books & Cafe. More than 110 bookworms participated in the community Secret Santa event that organizers Vaughan MacDonald and Alexandra Ekstrom referred to as “literature and giverature” – books and giving. […]


Write On Ottawa: Castrum Lucis continues dark YA fantasy series

Jennifer Carole Lewis is an author of paranormal romance and urban fantasy. Find her at her website, on Facebook, or on Twitter.  You can see Lewis’ review of Chameleon, the first book in this series, here. Edain Duguay’s Chameleon finished on a ray of light, exploring teen love, but Castrum Lucis takes a darker turn, reflecting the […]


Seeking a special gift? See our 2015 guide to local books.

For the past two years, we have published a holiday gift guide of books by authors and publishers from the National Capital Region. This year we continue our tradition of highlighting all of the authors that we have reviewed in the past year. Below you will find more than 60 books and comics, the vast majority of […]


Write On Ottawa: Searching for the secret of happiness

“Happiness is a warm puppy.” ― Charles M. Schulz Legendary cartoonist Charles Schulz is best known for creating the Peanuts comic strip, with such famous characters as Snoopy. This famous dog, however, is not the only four-legged cartoon that can bring happiness to readers, as we can see from the illustrated children’s book Cocopuff: A Happy Tale by […]


Write On Ottawa: The power of questions

Is a question more powerful than a statement? For parents, this deceivingly simple query may open doors to a fun new way to interact with your children. In her book Why Am I Perfect?, author Nathalie Beaupré offers an interactive workbook that parents can use with their kids. The main idea behind this work is the difference between […]