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All stories relating to Books of the year 2012

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Canadian booksellers pick top LGBT books of 2012

When asked about the top LGBT books of the year, Canadian booksellers offered many thought-provoking choices.

Scott Dagostino, manager of Toronto’s Glad Day Bookshop, says, “I could go on and on about the great books we have in stock. And the great taste of our customers, who have rewarded these authors for their talent and risk-taking.”

Click the thumbnails below to read more about booksellers’ picks.

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Canadian booksellers pick top science fiction and fantasy books of 2012

Q&Q contacted independent booksellers across Canada to get their picks for the top science fiction and fantasy titles of 2012.

Chris Szego, manager of Toronto’s BakkaPhoenix Books, says sci-fi and fantasy are becoming mainstream genres. She speculates the appeal is a byproduct of big-budget film franchises such as Harry Potter, Batman, and Lord of the Rings.

Over the past year, Walter Bruce Sinclair, co-owner of Vancouver’s White Dwarf Books, has observed the waning of Twilight-style fiction. “There has been a glut of paranormal romance and zombie novels, which have crowded out other genres,” he says. “This seems to be running its course, and we’re starting to see a resurgence of hard science fiction.”

Click on the thumbnails below to read more about the year’s biggest books.

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Canadian booksellers pick the top crime and mystery books of 2012

Q&Q contacted booksellers across Canada to uncover the most popular crime and mystery titles of 2012.

Click on the thumbnails to discover the booksellers’ top titles.

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Q&Q readers pick books of the year

Last week, Q&Q asked readers to submit their favourite Canadian titles of 2012, and the votes came pouring in.

In the fiction category, Tanis Rideout’s Above All Things (McClelland & Stewart), about George Mallory’s fatal attempt to climb Mount Everest, is a clear favourite, as is Corey Redekop’s zombie novel, Husk. Many of you also love CS Richardson’s romantic The Emperor of Paris (Doubleday Canada) and Missy Marton’s debut novel, The Love Monster (Véhicule Press).

When it comes to poetry, the top titles are Don McKay’s ecologically minded collection Paradoxides (M&S) and Mathew Henderson’s Lease (Coach House Books) inspired by his time working in the Western oil fields.

The Mother Corp receives some love in the non-fiction category, with three books by CBC personalities voted best of the year: Rick Mercer’s A Nation Worth Ranting About (Doubleday Canada), Amanda Lang’s The Power of Why (HarperCollins Canada), and Nahlah Ayed’s A Thousand Farewells: A Reporter’s Journey from Refugee Camp to the Arab Spring (Viking Canada). Another favourite is Jael Ealey Richardson’s memoir, The Stone Thrower: A Daughter’s Lessons, a Father’s Life (Thomas Allen Publishers), chronicling her football-playing father’s past.

In November, Isabelle Arsenault’s illustrations for Kyo Maclear’s latest picture book, Virginia Wolf (Kids Can Press), won her the Governor General’s Literary Award. Q&Q readers were also impressed by the title, which overwhelmingly received the most votes in the children’s category.

Series titles rule in the YA category with Such Wicked Intent (HarperCollins Canada), the sequel to Kenneth Oppel’s This Dark Endeavour: The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein, and Neil Flambé and the Tokyo Treasure (Simon & Schuster), the latest boy-chef mystery by Kevin Sylvester.

Which 2012 books would you add to the list? Leave your picks in the comments below.

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Canadian booksellers pick the top non-fiction books of 2012

Among Canadian booksellers contacted by Q&Q, there was a general consensus that 2012 was a conservative year for non-fiction.

David Worsley, co-owner of Words Worth Books in Waterloo, Ontario, observed: “The big titles are spread out across genres. But there has been lots of interest in biographies, especially rock ’n’ roll biographies.”

Mike Hamm, manager of Bookmark in Halifax, found his customers gravitating toward more austere non-fiction narratives. “This year featured strong sales for titles that were very contemplative and ultra-serious in tone,” he says.

Click on the thumbnails to view booksellers’ picks for the top non-fiction titles of 2012.

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Canadian booksellers pick the top graphic novels of 2012

According to booksellers contacted by Q&Q, graphic novels continue their move into the mainstream.

Jason Grimmer, manager of Montreal’s Librairie Drawn & Quarterly, says, “People are starting to look at graphic novels as literature.”

Calum Johnston, owner of Halifax’s Strange Adventures, observes: “Libraries, bookstores, schools, and universities keep adding comics to their curriculum and shelves. So the chance of people coming into contact with graphic novels is improving.”

Click on the thumbnails below to explore booksellers’ picks for best graphic novels of the year.

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Canadian booksellers pick the top cookbooks of 2012

According to booksellers contacted by Q&Q, cookbooks that focus on ingredient-based specialty cooking have made a major resurgence.

Mika Bareket of Toronto’s Good Egg says, “Some of the biggest and best books of the year have been very focused on regional authenticity, some as specific as to a particular province or region within a nation. This trend replaces the more worldly chef-driven trends of previous years, which tend to yield culturally broad cookbooks.”

Click the thumbnails below to explore booksellers’ picks for the top cookbooks of 2012.

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Books of the year: it’s your turn

Q&Q reviewers, editors, and Canadian booksellers have all weighed in with their picks for the top books of 2012. Now it’s your turn.

Tell us your favourite Canadian titles of the year and we’ll share the results next week.



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Canadian booksellers pick their top fiction of 2012

When Q&Q spoke to independent booksellers across Canada to get their fiction picks of the year, it became apparent that while seasoned favourites like Ian McEwan and J.K. Rowling dominate the list, local titles are favourites in all regions.

Simone Lee, co-owner of Pages on Kensington in Calgary, attributes the popularity of Will Ferguson’s 419 to hometown pride. “He’s a local celebrity,” she says.

Click on the thumbnails below to discover Canadian booksellers’ top picks for fiction.

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Book designers pick their favourite covers of 2012

Q&Q asked five book designers to pick their favourite covers of the year.

Click on the thumbnails to find out why these covers were selected as some of the best of 2012.

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Book Pictures

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Hall of Honourers

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Eva Stachniak's Empress of the Night

Eva Stachniak poses with a copy of her book, Empress of the Night

Tea and snacks inspired by Eva Stachniak's Empress of the Night

Rimma Burashko with author Eva Stachniak

Eva Stachniak talks to the audience about the best and worst of Catherine the Great's favourites

Eva Stachniak smiles as she signs a copy of Empress of the Night for a fan

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