Rinaldo Walcott's groundbreaking study of black culture in Canada, Black Like Who?, caused such an uproar upon its publication in 1997 that Insomniac Press has decided to publish a second revised edition of this perennial best-seller. With its incisive readings of hip-hop, film, literature, social unrest, sports, music and the electronic media, Walcott's book not only assesses the role of black Canadians in defining Canada, it also argues strenuously against any notion of an essentialist Canadian blackness. As erudite on the issue of American super-critic Henry Louis Gates' blindness to black Canadian realities as he is on the rap of the Dream Warriors and Maestro Fresh Wes, Walcott's essays are thought-provoking and always controversial in the best sense of the word. They have added and continue to add immeasurably to public debate.
We often think of sleep as mere stasis, a pause button we press at the end of each day. Yet sleep is full of untold mysteries—eluding us when we seek it too fervently, throwing us into surreal dream worlds when we don’t, sometimes even possessing our bodies so that they walk and talk without our conscious volition. Delving into the mysteries of his own sleep patterns, Bill Hayes marvels, “I have come to see that sleep itself tells a story.” An acclaimed journalist and memoirist—and partner of the late neurologist Oliver Sacks—Hayes has been plagued by insomnia his entire life. The science and mythology of sleep and sleeplessness form the backbone to Hayes’s narrative of his per...
What if Anne Shirley, the sweet heroine of Lucy Maud Montgomery's novels, was born in 1970 and decided to join a rock band? John Stiles's wonderful first novel answers these questions, in a manner of speaking. In the grand tradition of the Bible's prodigal son, Charles Dickens' Great Expectations and James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Stiles gives us The Insolent Boy.
Credit cards can be as hazardous to your financial health as cigarettes are to your lungs, says Richard Baughman, and credit card companies will lure you in and keep you hooked more effectively than Joe Camel. During nearly thirty years as a loan officer at a number of Canadian banks and trust companies, Richard Baughman handled over 50,000 credit applications, and he learned that most people put less thought into shopping for a loan than they do into shopping for shoes! Naively believing that customer loyalty carries weight with the banks, or that credit reports are clean just because payments are on time, can set you up to be one of the millions of Canadians who will retire into poverty.
Winner: 2007 P. K. Page Founders' Award Winner: 2008 Great Canadian Literary Hunt Finalist: 2008 RBC Bronwen Wallace Award In Tiny, Frantic, Stronger, Jeff Latosik considers states of durability and longevity in an age of ephemeral mores and instant gratification. Probing the pressure points where notions of physical, psychological, and technological strength continually threaten to erupt into their opposites, these poems ask which aspects of our daily lives might actually last beyond the here and now, beyond their own inherent limitations of time, person, and place.
The Insomniac Library is proud to reissue Gwendolyn MacEwen's second novel, more than thirty years after its original appearance in 1971. The novel bears important resemblances to MacEwen's earlier Julian the Magician. Writing to poet Al Purdy, MacEwen confessed she wanted her second novel to be ''bulky, readable, and not overly mysterious.'' Unlike in Julian, however, here MacEwen sets out to write a deeply serious novel that also functions as entertaining historical fiction. The novel's hero is Akhenaton, Pharaoh of Egypt's Eighteenth Dynasty, who was the first ruler to introduce the idea of monotheism. As Rosemary Sullivan remarks in her biography of MacEwen, he was, like Julian, ''one more human being filled with the god-lust.'' Akhenaton's single-mindedness in his quest for his own brand of reason is a powerfully paradoxical distillation of the artistic temperament: originality, fertility and beauty set against death and despair and an inability to love.
A moving celebration of what Bill Hayes calls "the evanescent, the eavesdropped, the unexpected" of life in New York City, and an intimate glimpse of his relationship with the late Oliver Sacks. "A beautifully written once-in-a-lifetime book, about love, about life, soul, and the wonderful loving genius Oliver Sacks, and New York, and laughter and all of creation."--Anne Lamott Bill Hayes came to New York City in 2009 with a one-way ticket and only the vaguest idea of how he would get by. But, at forty-eight years old, having spent decades in San Francisco, he craved change. Grieving over the death of his partner, he quickly discovered the profound consolations of the city's incessant rhythm...
This delightful book includes over 100 mini-essays explaining the origins and historical development of words in our language that pertain to love and sex. Do you know, for example, what a 78 is? Here's a hint: like the old 78 rpm records, the term refers to a man who is ... well, on the fast side! Diligently researched, The Lover's Tongue is written in a light-hearted style. A dictionary of a different kind, this book is the perfect gift for that special someone, or for the connoisseur of language and history in your life
In LOCAL HEROES, Penn Kemp celebrates legendary cultural heroes from London Ontario. These poems evoke a specific city in its particular landscape and history. Kemp documents London's literary and artistic heritage in honouring artists in fields ranging from visual through the word to figure skating. Presented as an overview, the collection stretches from Victoria explorer Teresa Harris to the contemporary arts scene. Local Heroes acknowledges the Indigenous peoples here, and the ongoing waves of settlers who have called the area home, as London grows from colonial outpost to vibrant cultural centre. Local Heroes spans time but remains in place.