Knopf Canada’s New Face of Fiction program has been responsible for debut novels by some of Canada’s best-loved contemporary writers, including Yann Martel and Ann-Marie MacDonald. This year, the series spotlights Toronto author Lynne Kutsukake, whose first novel, The Translation of Love, is set in postwar Tokyo and follows a repatriated girl who aids her classmate in the search for her missing sister.
The other face of fiction is Gary Barwin may be new to the novel form, but his name will be recognizable by anyone who has read his poetry or his story collection I, Dr. Greenblatt, Orthodontist 251–1457. Barwin’s first novel, Yiddish for Pirates (Random House Canada), shuttles between modern-day Florida and Spain during the Inquisition to provide revisionist takes on classic pirate tales. Oh, and it’s narrated by a 500-year-old parrot.