Hi book lovers! Ashley here! I’ve been so stressed lately with the start of a new school semester and my new job placement, so I took a few weeks off from Book Beat. You can understand, right? I’m going to try to keep up with my normal reading and writing schedule, but it seems like my main focus will be my textbooks for a while. Good thing I have interesting courses! But as always, a lot has been happening in the book world, so let’s get caught up together!
September 23rd marks Bi Visibility Day or Bisexual Pride Day, so in honour of the day I want to touch on the state of bisexuality in literature. There is a clear lack of bisexual characters in mainstream books overall, and even LGBTQ books seem to have a problem with bi erasure. Literature is a vital vessel for representation, and to be honest it’s still so hard to find good books with bisexual characters these days. So for all my YA fans, here is a list of fifteen YA books that celebrate bisexuality. Also, here is a list of academic texts, adult fiction and memoirs that show the experiences of bisexual people.
It’s also awards season! The Scotiabank Giller Prize, one of Canada’s most prestigious book awards, just revealed its longlist on Monday with a few surprises. For the first time a horror novel, David Demchuk’s The Bone Mother, will be up for the award. The list also features veterans like David Chariandy and Toronto’s Michael Redhill, and includes two short story collections. This year’s jurors will be former winners André Alexis and Lynn Coady. The jurors describe this year’s theme as “a world in transition,” so nominated books focus on things like self-reflection, civic engagement, and the strangeness of the times. The winner of this award can expect a huge jump in sales and a big accreditation, so the jurors’ final choice will be interesting. The list is worth checking out just for some good new recommendations as well! You can read about all the authors and find more information about the prize at the following link.
In addition, the longlist for the National Book Award in fiction has been announced. For the first time since 2013 women hold the majority of nominations, outnumbering the men by 10 to 8. The list includes stories about love at the Syrian border, colonial Myanmar, and an undocumented Chinese immigrant in the United States. You can check out the full list of nominated authors and books here.
Finally, David Tennant and Michael Sheen are two of my favourite actors. So when I saw the picture of them as their characters Crowley and Aziraphale, I almost choked. The actors are currently filming Good Omens, an adaptation of the acclaimed novel by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. For longtime fans, the adaptation will soon be streamed through Amazon Prime in partnership with the BBC. And for readers unfamiliar with this book, it’s kind of a comedic, end of the world, religious thing that only legends like Pratchett and Gaiman can pull off.