fun stuff, guest post

Guest Post by Alex Hoffman: How do people rate Giller Prize winners? 2013 edition!

(adapted from the original 2012 post)

Alex Hoffman, who tweets as @thatguyalex, runs the Metro Toronto Book Club and is the owner of many signed books and even more opinions. With the approach of the Giller announcement this evening, he asked if he could do a guest post. The floor is his. . . 

With the imminent announcement of either Crooked Maid or Cataract City as the 2013 winner, I decided to ruminate on some Giller questions through a guest post here on EditorialEyes.

Do Giller Winners become popular reads?


Continue reading “Guest Post by Alex Hoffman: How do people rate Giller Prize winners? 2013 edition!”

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fun stuff, literary event

The Event: Rare Stories and Rarer Tea with Jeff Fuchs

On Wednesday, November 7th I had to chance to see new art, have a chat with a rather incredible man in Shangri-La, and sample a tea that may never before have been tasted in Canada. . .

Tea and art aficionados mingle and taste tea on the lower level of the Ars Nova gallery.

This will come as a shock to you: one of my passions is great storytelling. I know, I know, I hide it well, don’t I? One of my other passions, which you may also have heard me talk about in person or on Twitter, is tea. Toronto is home to dozens of tea shops, each different from the last. Over the years, my palate for loose-leaf tea has become more and more refined. I admit it, I’m a bit of a tea snob.

I’m even part of a tea club, which meets all over the city to check out tea purveyors and taste their wares, try out different afternoon tea services, go to seminars, and just have all kinds of fun to do with tea. One of the places we often meet is the Tea Emporium, which features artwork by Canadian author/photographer/explorer/tea-freak Jeff Fuchs. Our group jumped at the chance to see Jeff’s newest photograph exhibit at the Ars Nova gallery, especially when we heard what else the evening had to offer: a talk with Jeff in Yunnan and the launch of a very special subscription service called Jalam Teas.

Continue reading “The Event: Rare Stories and Rarer Tea with Jeff Fuchs”

fun stuff, miscellaneous

Turning 30: the 30 books that have shaped the reader and person I am

Today I turn 30. I love birthdays for the chance to celebrate with friends and also to reflect on where I’ve been and where I’m going. I thought it fitting to take a look back today at the 30 books that have shaped me, books that I’ve adored or obsessed about over the years, books that have shifted the way I’ve thought about reading and life in some way. These are not necessarily the books that make up my all-time favourites list now, or even books that I think are the best written. These are the books, in roughly chronological reading order, that mattered to me at particular times in my life, that have influenced the reader and the person I have become.

Continue reading “Turning 30: the 30 books that have shaped the reader and person I am”

fun stuff, guest post

Guest Post by Alex Hoffman: How much do people actually like Giller Prize winners?

Alex Hoffman, who tweets as @thatguyalex and blogs at graphicnovelguy.wordpress.com, runs the Metro Toronto Book Club and is the owner of many signed books and even more opinions. With the approach of the Giller announcement this evening, he asked if he could do a guest post. The floor is his. . . 

With the imminent announcement of either 419 by Will Ferguson or Ru by Kim Thuy as the 2012 winner, I decided to ruminate on some Giller questions through a guest post here on EditorialEyes.

Do Giller Winners become popular reads?


Continue reading “Guest Post by Alex Hoffman: How much do people actually like Giller Prize winners?”

book review, Cloud Atlas Readalong, fun stuff

Introducing the Cloud Atlas Readalong!

The Cloud Atlas Readalong with Dee at EditorialEyes

Click here for a complete list of Readalong posts.

It’s inevitable. When someone finds out you’re a book person, they will ask you that single, awful question: What’s your favourite book? How on earth can you answer a question like that? Narrow it down by genre, perhaps, or by the criteria that define “favourite”? Give a top-5 answer instead? Or just shrug and say “too many to count”?

Well, if I were pinned down and had to answer that question, I would have several strong contenders, including Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s Shadow of the Wind, A.S. Byatt’s Possession, Michael Ondaatje’s In the Skin of a Lion, Miriam Toews’ A Complicated Kindness, and John Steinbeck’s East of Eden. And numbered among those is David Mitchell’s luminous, challenging, storytelling masterpiece Cloud Atlas. You may have heard the buzz about the Wachowskis’ movie adaptation of Cloud Atlas, premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival and opening in wide release on October 26th. In order to appreciate the film to its fullest, I’m going to re-read the stunning source novel, and I thought you might enjoy reading along and discussing with me.

The first installment will go live Tuesday, August 14th, and in it I’ll look at the first section, “The Pacific Journal of Adam Ewing” (first half). Each Tuesday we’ll look at the next section of Cloud Atlas, from “Adam Ewing” to “Sloosha’s Crossin'” and back again. The final section will take us to Tuesday, October 23rd, just in time for the movie…

Never read Cloud Atlas? Started but gave up because the language of the Pacific Journal section was too dense? Read it and want to read it again? Please join me in discussing Cloud Atlas.

Continue reading “Introducing the Cloud Atlas Readalong!”

fun stuff

My blog: visually represented as a Wordle

**Updated on November 16th, 2012. I see a few differences, though I’m surprised “cloud” and “atlas” aren’t more prominently displayed. Tea and books, though…that’s a smart Wordle:

Wordle: editorialeyes.wordpress.com on Nov 16

In a shocking turn of events, I use the word “book” more than any other non-common word in this blog! Click on the image to check out my blog in Wordle form as of February 4th, 2012!

Wordle: EditorialEyes.Wordpress.Com