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Kate Harris won the RBC Taylor Prize for non-fiction for Lands of Lost Borders: Out of Bounds on the Silk Road. Her debut memoir covers her 14-month harrowing journey travelling by bicycle along the Silk Road – the same route Marco Polo travelled in the 13th century. And you thought getting through this winter was tough.


Netflix’s The Umbrella Academy, based on a graphic novel series by Gerard Way and starring Canada’s own Ellen Page, has received rave reviews – and deservedly so. The streaming service describes it as “a dysfunctional family of superheroes who come together to solve the mystery of their father’s death, the threat of the apocalypse and more.” No word yet on when season 2 will start filming, but now’s the time to get caught up.


Winter is finally done, and what better way to celebrate than going to Ottawa’s International Poetry Festival from March 26-31? Eighty poets will be there to share their work in English and French. For more information, visit

What are Torontonians reading?

A Different Booklist.Handout

  • A Different Booklist
  • Where: Toronto
  • Owners: Itah Sadu and Miguel San Vicente

The bestselling book at this store that specializes in books from the African and Caribbean diaspora is They Call Me George: The Untold Story of Black Train Porters and the Birth of Modern Canada by Cecil Foster. “We had the launch at the store last month and it was very well-attended and we sold almost 100 copies. It is a fascinating story as the title suggests and Cecil Foster is well known in Canada as an author, radio personality and an academic,” co-owner Miguel San Vicente said. He added that David Chariandy’s Brother has also been doing well. A Different Booklist has been in the Bathurst-Bloor area since it opened almost 20 years ago and has served as a community hub for artists, writers and students. The store is now at a temporary location at 779 Bathurst Street but is expected to move to the new Mirvish Village development once it’s completed.

Mark your literary calendar

April 18

Come meet Adam Tooze, the winner of this year’s Lionel Gelber Prize for non-fiction for his book Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World. Tooze will sit down with Derek DeCloet. The Globe and Mail’s executive editor and head of Report on Business, at a subscriber-only event at 351 King St. E. For more details:

Oct. 14-18, 2020

Okay, so it might be a bit early to be peering ahead to 2020, but this is big news for the domestic publishing industry: Canada will be the host country at next year’s Frankfurt Book Fair (the literary equivalent to TIFF), and Canada FBM 2020 just gave publishers, authors, cultural organizations and media a sneak peek of its “slogo.” This has been six years in the making – Canada was offered the chance to host the 2017 fair, but the Harper government declined – and the organizing committee will shift into high gear in the next few months.

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Editor’s note: March 15, 2019: An earlier version of this article described Kate Harris's book as a novel. In fact, it is a memoir. Also, the Taylor Prize is an award for non-fiction, not fiction as earlier reported.