Tag Archives: reading

Morgan Campbell: My Fighting Family

The episode kicks off with host Karim Kanji and returning guest and new author Morgan Campbell discussing the parallels between the publishing and boxing industries, highlighting the similarities between writers and boxers, editors and trainers, and agents and managers. They emphasize the importance of active promotion in both fields, drawing insightful comparisons between book promotion and the marketing efforts involved in selling pay-per-view boxing events.

The episode then touches on the intricacies of writing a book about family, with Campbell highlighting the complexities of family dynamics and the need to write from his own perspective. They also reflect on their experiences with education, sharing memories of the lack of natural light in their school and the impact of technology on learning.

morgan campbell and karim kanji
morgan campbell and karim kanji with the book my fighting family

Campbell passionately addresses the issue of Black America’s culture being underappreciated and appropriated, emphasizing the lack of authentic love and compensation for their contributions.

The meeting concludes with a discussion about a poignant passage from Campbell’s book, “My Fighting Family Borders and Bloodlines and the Battles That Made Us,” where Campbell vividly describes a pivotal moment in a high school football game. They also share their thoughts on the upcoming Super Bowl, with Campbell expressing his confidence in the Kansas City Chiefs’ ability to outperform the San Francisco 49ers.

Buy the book: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.ca/books/669827/my-fighting-family-by-morgan-campbell/9780771050190 

This is Episode #285 of the Welcome! podcast.

Perry Chafe

Perry Chafe - Photograph by Maureen Ennis
Perry Chafe – Photograph by Maureen Ennis

Introduction: Step into the intriguing world of Newfoundland-based writer and showrunner, Perry Chafe, as he takes us on an unforgettable journey through his masterful novel, “Closer by Sea.” This enthralling coming-of-age story presents a rich tapestry of emotions, friendships, and the enigmatic allure of a small island community. Comparable to renowned works like Mary Lawson’s “A Town Called Solace” and Stephen King’s “Stand by Me,” Chafe’s novel offers a riveting exploration of the fragility of childhood bonds and the haunting disappearance of a young girl. Set in the 90s, “Closer by Sea” unveils the delicate balance between innocence and the ever-changing landscape of life.

A Tale of Mysterious Disappearance: “Closer by Sea” revolves around the baffling vanishing of a young girl, setting the stage for an engrossing mystery that will keep readers on the edge of their seats. As we delve deeper into the heart of the novel, the layers of secrets, hidden emotions, and untold truths come to light, intertwining with the charm of a close-knit island community. Perry Chafe deftly weaves a web of intrigue, enticing readers to join the characters in their quest for answers and closure.

A Heartfelt Coming-of-Age Story: At its core, “Closer by Sea” is a poignant coming-of-age narrative that explores the intricate complexities of growing up amidst a backdrop of evolving landscapes and societal transformations. Chafe’s prose beautifully captures the essence of youth and the power of friendships that shape us during our formative years. As we accompany the characters on their journey through adolescence, we witness how they grapple with love, loss, and the challenges of facing a world in transition.

Book Club Delight: For book club enthusiasts, “Closer by Sea” is an ideal choice, promising rich discussions and emotional resonance that will resonate deeply with readers. The novel’s evocative themes and thought-provoking narrative make it the perfect canvas for exploration and interpretation. Within the pages of “Closer by Sea,” book club members will find a treasure trove of topics to contemplate, from the resilience of youth to the dynamics of close-knit communities and the intricacies of solving mysteries.

A Newfoundland Gem: As a Newfoundland-based writer and showrunner, Perry Chafe brings a unique perspective to his storytelling, infusing the essence of the region into the very fabric of “Closer by Sea.” With authentic depictions of the island’s landscape and its people, Chafe paints a vivid picture that transports readers to this captivating world. Newfoundland’s allure and enchanting charm blend seamlessly with the novel’s narrative, creating a truly immersive experience for readers.

Conclusion: “Closer by Sea” is a literary gem that showcases the immense talent of Perry Chafe, a distinguished Newfoundland-based writer and showrunner. This poignant coming-of-age tale intertwines mystery, friendship, and the enigmatic beauty of a small island community, delivering a compelling and emotionally resonant narrative. Perfect for book club discussions, “Closer by Sea” is a novel that lingers in the heart long after the last page is turned. Embrace the journey into the 90s and the mysteries that unfold in this remarkable tale by Perry Chafe.

This is Episode #282 of the Welcome! podcast.

Jeremiah Brown: The 4 Year Olympian – Interview

Jeremiah Brown was part of Team Canada’s Men’s 8 rowing team that captured the silver medal at the London 2012 Olympic Games. He is also the author of the new book, The 4 Year Olympian (published by Dundurn Press).

This is Episode #127.

Here are some of the things we discussed:

  • How being bullied as a kid helped form his character.
  • His stint in jail after robbing a delivery man.
  • How his relationship with Amy, his ex-girlfriend helped his stay focused on training and his Olympic dream.
  • Jeremiah Brown’s two most important coaches: Coach Riley (his football coach at Hamilton’s McMaster University) and Doug White (his rowing coach).
  • How Jeremiah Brown made the McMaster football team as a walk-on.
  • His 4 year journey to the Olympics (including all his failures and stumbles)
  • The amount of money Team Canada athletes make to be full-time athletes
  • Why Jeremiah Brown decided to leave the rowing team and not pursue a Gold medal in 2016.
  • His work with the Canadian Olympic Committee’s Game Plan program.

Jeremiah Brown’s next challenge: Playing drums in a successful stadium-filling band!

Listen below:

Girth Radio
Apple Podcasts
Google Play Music
Pocket Casts
You can also subscribe to the podcast via RSS Feed if you’re so inclined.

Recorded live at Girth Radio.

Music by Afraaz Mulji and Arkells.

If you liked this episode you will also like:

podcast show notes karim kanji jeremiah brown

Book Report: Scarborough

Trailer for Scarborough: a novel from CEHernandez on Vimeo.

Book Report: Brother

Brother by David Chariandy,  is a story that takes place in Scarborough near the Rouge Valley about two brothers, Michael and Francis. The book is both familiar (about the low expectations that others have for the two brothers based on the colour of their skin) and heartbreaking (in that it seems there is no way out of the cycle of low hopes, dreams and eventual poverty for the family).

As an active resident of Scarborough I have seen (and experienced some) the same things that Michael and Francis have.

A great book for everyone living in Toronto and those who don’t but live in places where the shadows are both inviting and scary.

Book Report: The Marrow Thieves

I just finished reading Cherie Dimaline’s book, The Marrow Thieves.  It’s kinda sad that it was voted out on Day Three of Canada Reads.

The Marrow Thieves is a story about a world in which Indigenous peoples are being hunted and harvested for their marrow. Why, because, the rest of world have lost the ability to dream. The book follows Frenchie as he travels north and meets with various other runners.

The Marrow Thieves reminds us of how the European settlers abused the Indigenous people upon contact. I was reminded of the horrors of the residential school system and the “sixties scoop” while reading this book.

This book is must reading for anyone wanting to better understand the continuing Indigenous experience.

Episode #113: Terry Fallis

Terry Fallis is an award-winning Canadian author of six best sellers and co-founder of PR company, Thornley Fallis.

We spoke about his time in politics, how he became an author, and how his books reflect the various conversations we are having in today’s political discourse.

Listen below:

Girth Radio
Apple Podcasts
Google Play Music
Pocket Casts
You can also subscribe to the podcast via RSS Feed if you’re so inclined.

Recorded live at Girth Radio.
Music by Afraaz Mulji.

If you enjoyed this episode you’ll also like:

Ep106: Ed Keenan, Toronto Star
Ep104: MP Arif Virani
Ep99: Richard Peddie, MLSE

Listen to other Girth Radio podcasts like The Freeze with Brian and Tyler.

Book Report: Poles Apart

I can get used to this. It’s early March 2018 and I’ve already read three Terry Fallis books. This last one, Poles Apart (2015), is another tale written in the humourous style Canadians have come to know and love about Fallis’ books.

Just before I started reading this book, I reached out to Fallis to ask him on my podcast. I sat down with him early this week and will be releasing that episode this weekend. So I don’t want to spoil some of the insights that Fallis shared.

However, what I will say, is that Fallis does not disappoint in Poles Apart. It’s both a funny and insightful read. We know the funny. Insightful because Terry explores the feminist movement from the standpoint of a feminist who happens to be a man.

Pick up this book from Amazon, your public library or listen to it on Terry Fallis’ website.


Book Report: One Brother Shy

One of my friends, Dave Fleet, used to work for the agency Thornley Fallis. That’s when I probably first heard about Terry Fallis. Then came the popular MeetUps I used to attend in Toronto around media, PR and social media.

I think I heard about his podcast, Inside PR. But I definitely became aware  of him when his novel, The Best Laid Plans, was made into a TV series of the same name.

And it’s taken me this long to finally read one of his book, One Brother Shy.

It’s been a while since I’ve read a book so funny. The first book(s) I remember reading that made me laugh was Robert Ludlum’s Road to Omaha and Road To Gandolfo.

Thanks Terry for writing a wickedly funny book set (for the most part) in Canada.

I see a little bit of Alex MacAskill in me. Naturally, I’m an introvert. However, unlike Alex, I’m born this way. Also like Alex, I can be gregarious as well.

If you’re looking for a book about family, overcoming setbacks, and international adventure with a touch of funny this is the book for you. Pick it up at your favourite local bookstore, Amazon, or public library.