The Plan

Every year I make a plan, post it here, and every year I fail to follow through. The plan isn’t really a plan, it’s just a list of books that I’ve recently acquired or rediscovered on my shelves and hope to read some time before the end of the year. I think I made my very first “plan” post more than six years ago, and it wouldn’t surprise me to learn that one or more of those books still haven’t been read. It’ll happen eventually. So without further ado, here, in no particular order, is this year’s list (not including Wild Geese, which I’m currently reading, and the remaining Robertson Davies novels that I didn’t get a chance to finish writing about):

  1. Fear of Fighting, by Stacey May Fowles, illustrated by Marlena Zuber
  2. The Discoverer, by Jan Kjærstad
  3. What Boys Like, by Amy Jones
  4. Born to Run, by Christopher McDougall
  5. Why Your World is About to Get a Whole Lot Smaller, by Jeff Rubin
  6. Where We Have to Go, by Lauren Kirshner
  7. Whore, by Nelly Arcan
  8. The Pornographer’s Poem, by Michael Turner
  9. The Mezzanine, by Nicholson Baker
  10. The Uses of Enchantment, by Heidi Julavits
  11. The Moonstone, by Wilkie Collins
  12. The Big Why, by Michael Winter
  13. The Lady in the Lake, by Raymond Chandler
  14. The Tamuli (trilogy), by David Eddings
  15. Gently Down the Stream, by Ray Robertson

The list is woefully incomplete, of course, and is subject to change without notice, but right now those are the books that I’ve placed highest on my stack. So stay tuned! These and other great books will be coming up later in the year.


Writer. Editor. Critic.


  1. I quite like Wild Geese. I’ve read it before, which is why I put it off until last. I knew that as long as I manage to read all the other Canada Reads: Independently selections I’d still be able to make an informed decision about all of them.
    It’s not quite as good as I remember it, but it’s still a fine book. I had heard–and I don’t know if it’s true, so don’t quote me on it–that Martha Ostenso’s husband so disliked Wild Geese that he bullied her into changing her style, and that’s why this is the only book she wrote that’s still remembered at all. It’s a shame, really. I see her as sort of a budding Margaret Laurence in this book (and that’s high praise, from me; Margaret Laurence is my CanLit Margaret of choice).

  2. Your CanLit Margaret of choice! And sadly, I’ve never read any of her books (should I have admitted to that?).
    What should be my introductory book?
    Also: thanks for the (soonish) welcome to TO. I’m so very excited! And I hope no one from Vancouver sees this comment šŸ˜›

  3. I’ve only managed to read three of her books (they can be harder to find than you might expect, and I don’t order books online unless I’m desperate or have a gift certificate or something), but you should probably start with The Stone Angel. It’s the one that we all had to read in high school here in Ontario, and it’s the one that everybody hates. But I really liked it, and it introduces Manawaka, where a bunch of her stuff is set.

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