Something Fierce Memoirs of a Revolutionary Daughter, by Carmen Aguirre, Douglas & McIntyre, 274 pages, $21
In 1973, after Augusto Pinochet’s coup in Chile, six-year-old Carmen Aguirre and her family fled to Canada. Ten years later, they returned to Chile, travelling as well to Peru, Bolivia and Argentina, leading double lives in the resistance movement opposing dictatorial rule. Aguirre, now an actor and playwright in Vancouver, spins a passionate and suspenseful story.
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy By John le Carré, Penguin Canada, 377 pages, $18
Forced out of MI-6 and aided only by a group of old friends, George Smiley must unearth a highly placed Soviet mole who is betraying the British secret service’s agents and networks.
As Long as the Rivers Flow By James Bartleman, Vintage Canada, 247 pages, $19.95
James Bartleman, from the Chippewas of Rama First Nation, was a distinguished member of the Canadian diplomatic corps for 35 years before being named Ontario’s lieutenant-governor in 2002. Since leaving that post, he has reinvented himself as the author of four books of non-fiction and this novel, which follows the life of a six-year-old girl who is taken from her parents and sent to a residential school.
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight Translated by John Gardner, University of Chicago Press, 203 pages, $12
John Gardner, who died in a motorcycle accident in 1982, was a poet, critic, teacher, historian and novelist ( Grendel, The Sunlight Dialogues). The adventures of Gawain, knight of the Round Table and King Arthur’s nephew, make up one of the oldest and best-known Arthurian tales, captured in this modern translation from Middle English. Also included are Gardner’s considerable introduction to the times and the works of the Gawain poet.
Little Princes One Man’s Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal, by Conor Grennan, Morrow, 294 pages, $16.99
Three months as a volunteer at the Little Princes Children’s Home, an orphanage in war-torn Nepal, turned into a lifetime commitment for Conor Grennan. But rather than orphans, the children he had come to love were victims: Child traffickers had taken enormous fees to bring the children to safety, away from the civil war, and then abandoned them in distant Kathmandu. Grennan swore to reunite the children with their families, no small task in the violence-torn country, and mostly succeeded.