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Books by Our Members

small things left behind
Ella Zeltserman

“Freedom is something my father has never known.
How do I explain freedom to the ones born bent?”

Ella Zeltserman’s poetry cuts both ways. The story of her flight from the USSR in 1979—of the young family she brought to Edmonton and the older one she left behind—does “explain freedom to the ones born bent,” but it also explains oppression to the ones born free. Deftly modulating language, imagery, and events of past and present, comfort and tyranny, atrocity and family, home and war, Leningrad and Edmonton, she touches readers emotionally, drawing them into the journey. This authentic account of Russian-Jewish immigration to Canada during the Cold War will speak to all who have left their country or who moved far away from home.
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Man in blue pyjamas

Jalal Barzanji
Translator Sabah A. Salih
Foreword John Ralston Saul

"The style of my book must be in small pieces, as my life has been in pieces," wrties Jalal Barzanji. From 1986 to 1988 poet and journalist he endured imprisonment and torture under Saddam Hussein’s regime because of his literary and journalistic achievements—writing that openly explores themes of peace, democracy, and freedom. It was not until 1998, when Barzanji and his family took refuge in Canada, that he was able to consider speaking out fully on these topics. Still, due to economic necessity, Barzanji’s dream of writing had to wait until he was named Edmonton’s first Writer-in-Exile in 2007. This literary memoir is the project Barzanji worked on while Writer-in-Exile, and it is the first translation of his work from Kurdish into English.
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Nataliya Bukhanov

The author and the main character of the stories, a young woman Meranza, after getting married moves to another country. In her new life she tries to fit in a different culture, different way of life, and different traditions. Thinking out of the box, Meranza solves her numerous problems with humour and positive attitude to life.

The book contains 41 short stories in Russian language.
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Story that Brought Me Here

Edited by Linda Goyette, this anthology features work by WBB authors Terezinha Franca Kernnedy, Monika Igali, Rita Espeschit, Patricia López de Vloothuis, and Jalal Barzanji.

In this moving collection of stories and poems, writers from around the world share their thoughts on creating a life in Alberta. Expressed with beauty and clarity, and sometimes translated from the writer’s native tongue, these very personal accounts of joy and sadness, regret and humour, homesickness and exuberance, describe the defining moments of a departure and an arrival.

“The book is balanced—its contributors came for as many reasons as there are writers. Fascinating stories.” —Edmonton Sun

Thousands of newcomers are pouring into Alberta from around the globe, bringing unexpected gifts. Many are writers and storytellers. What pulls them to Canada? What happens to them on the journey? What experiences have they deliberately left behind? What treasures do they bring? How do they describe their emerging sense of place and their creative aspirations in a new home?

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A Most Beautiful Deception
Melissa Morelli Lacroix

listen you say
to the music
such beauty
deceives the pain

Melissa Morelli Lacroix explores the love and longing, loss and pain, grief and healing found in the music of Frédéric Chopin, Clara Schumann, and Claude Debussy in a series of poetic cycles that respond to each composer’s work. Lacroix writes with her ear finely tuned to the music of death and decay, to the harmonies and discords of music, nature, and human desire. Always, in A Most Beautiful Deception, we find the chords of love and devotion being torn apart by the deterioration of the body. Lacroix uses her research into the composers’ lives to add layers and nuance, thus creating a complex triangle between the reader, the music, and the poet. Woven almost imperceptibly into these accounts of three composers and their respective fights against the decay of the body and the mind, lies the thread of the poet’s own relationships and loss.
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Marco Katz Montiel

Intellectual discussions have fallen short of developing a truly hemispheric view of the Americas thus far. With eye towards filling this gap, Music and Identity in Twentieth-Century Literature from Our America, written by a professional musician turned literary scholar, offers a one-of-a-kind approach to exploring American homologies while taking account of national and regional differences. Based on an interdisciplinary Cultural Studies approach, this new methodology brings rigorous musicianship and critical literary theory to consider relationships between musical protagonists from Colombia, Cuba, and the United States in novels by Gabriel García Márquez, Alejo Carpentier, Zora Neale Hurston, and John Okada. In addition to providing useful ideas for inter-American studies, this book opens up new ways of reading texts related to Latin American, African American, and Asian American studies.
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Sudhir Jain
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Also available on Kindle and IPAD:
50 short stories A Little Night's Amusement

Narratives of Citizenship
Edited by Aloys N.M. Fleischmann, Nancy Van Styvendale, and Cody McCarroll.

Examining various cultural products—music, cartoons, travel guides, ideographic treaties, film, and especially the literary arts—the contributors of these thirteen essays invite readers to conceptualize citizenship as a narrative construct, both in Canada and beyond. Focusing on indigenous and diasporic works, along with mass media depictions of Indigenous and diasporic peoples, this collection problematizes the juridical, political, and cultural ideal of universal citizenship. Readers are asked to envision the nation-state as a product of constant tension between coercive practices of exclusion and assimilation. Narratives of Citizenship is a vital contribution to the growing scholarship on narrative, nationalism, and globalization. Contributors: David Chariandy, Lily Cho, Daniel Coleman, Jennifer Bowering Delisle, Aloys N.M. Fleischmann, Sydney Iaukea, Marco Katz, Lindy Ledohowski, Cody McCarroll, Carmen Robertson, Laura Schechter, Paul Ugor, Nancy Van Styvendale, Dorothy Woodman, and Robert Zacharias.



Will not forget both laughter and tears
Tomoko Mitani
Yukari F. Meldrom, Translator

Geishas and samurai, manga and animé come to mind when Japan enters the conversation. While these traditional and modern images about the island nation have been widely disseminated in North America, most of us cannot imagine what everyday life is like in Japan. Tomoko Mitani’s work addresses this gap with honest responses to the male-dominated society of Japan in a down-to-earth style that looks inward, with stories that are at once intriguing and amusing. Translator Yukari F. Meldrum finds the fine balance in translation between domestication and foreignization, letting a new vantage point emerge. This collection of short stories and a novella will interest scholars and students of Translation Studies, Japanese Studies, and Women’s Studies, as well all of those who are interested in this genre.
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Most of the poems and prose pieces in this anthology were developed in the Edmonton creative writing workshop, Writing in the Margins. Participants were writers, all members of Writers Beyond Borders, whose first language is other than English and who are now writing in English. The workshop has been offered on a regular basis since 2009, and this anthology includes works of writers from Brazil, Chile, Cuba, Hungary, Kosovo, Russia and French Canada.

Discover the wry wit of Arnaldo Pérez, the intense involvement of Sarah Bórquez, the visceral musings of Monika Igali, the vivid reminiscences of Shukrije Pllana, the gentle rhythms of Ernest Chiasson, the exuberance of Therezinha Franca Kennedy, the quirkiness of Nataliya Bukhanova, and the imaginative leaps of Rita Espeschit.

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Featuring works by WBB members Nataliya Bukhanova, Melissa Morelli Lacroix, and Henry Victor, World on a Maple Leaf: A Treasury of Canadian Multicultural Folktales is a compilation of 25 folktales written by people from different cultural backgrounds who call Canada home. Rooted in cultures from around the world, the stories offer an imaginative world to students while promoting the true spirit of multiculturalism and educating students in the principles of diversity, equality and respect. The folktales, which come from many countries such as Japan, India, Ireland, Senegal, Afghanistan and Lithuania, delve into the world of spiders and foxes, kings and farmers, old women and young maidens.

While some of the stories originated from outside of Canada, they are distinctly rooted in Canadian soil. These stories will give students an opportunity to study various cultures, and will provide them an opportunity to see the universal elements that we all share as humans, irrespective of our differences. The collection was developed in collaboration with the Human Rights Education and Multiculturalism Fund and the City of Edmonton.

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