Lethbridge, Alberta

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Main Library: 5th Ave. S. and 8th St. S. | 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

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The Word On The Street has been renowned for the quality and diversity of its event programming and our next festival promises to offer the best so far. See our  line-up of incredible Canadian literary talent at The Word On The Street Lethbridge for 2017....

12:00 Signing: Sharon Butala, Clem and Olivier Martini, David Poulsen

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Where I Live Now

An intimate and uplifting book about finding renewal and hope through grief and loss.

“It was a terrible life; it was an enchanted life; it was a blessed life. And, of course, one day it ended.” —Sharon Butala

In the tradition of Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical Thinking, Diana Athill’s Somewhere Towards the End, and Atul Gawande’s Being Mortal comes a revelatory new book from one of our beloved writers.

When Sharon Butala’s husband, Peter, died unexpectedly, she found herself with no place to call home. Torn by grief and loss, she fled the ranchlands of southwest Saskatchewan and moved to the city, leaving almost everything behind. A lifetime of possessions was reduced to a few boxes of books, clothes, and keepsakes. But a lifetime of experience went with her, and a limitless well of memory—of personal failures, of a marriage that everybody said would not last but did, of the unbreakable bonds of family.

Reinventing herself in an urban landscape was painful, and facing her new life as a widow tested her very being. Yet out of this hard-won new existence comes an astonishingly frank, compassionate and moving memoir that offers not only solace and hope but inspiration to those who endure profound loss.

Often called one of this country’s true visionaries, Sharon Butala shares her insights into the grieving process and reveals the small triumphs and funny moments that kept her going. Where I Live Now is profound in its understanding of the many homes women must build for themselves in a lifetime.

  • Biography & Memoir
  • Nonfiction

Sharon Butala

Sharon Butala is an award-winning and bestselling author of both fiction and nonfiction. Her classic book The Perfection of the Morning was a #1 bestseller and a finalist for the Governor General’s Award. Fever, a short story collection, won the 1992 Authors’ Award for Paperback Fiction and was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for best book (Canada and Caribbean region). Her latest novel, Wild Rose, was published in 2015 and has been shortlisted for the W.O. Mitchell Book Prize. Her most recent memoir, Where I Live Now, was an instant national bestseller. Butala is a recipient of the Marian Engel Award, the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, and the 2012 Cheryl and Henry Kloppenburg Award for Literary Excellence. In 2002 she became an Officer of the Order of Canada. She lives in Calgary, Alberta.

And Then The Sky Exploded

While attending the funeral of his great-grandfather, ninth-grader Christian Larkin learns that the man he loved and respected was a member of the Manhattan Project, the team that designed and created the atomic bombs dropped on Japan during the Second World War.

On a school trip to Japan, Chris meets eighty-one-year-old Yuko, who was eleven when the first bomb exploded over Hiroshima, horribly injuring her. Christian is determined to do something to make up for what his great-grandfather did. But after all this time, what can one teenager really do? His friends tell him it’s a stupid idea, that there’s nothing he can do. And maybe they’re right.

But maybe, just maybe… they’re wrong.

  • Historical
  • Young Adult

David Poulsen

David A. Poulsen has been a broadcaster, teacher, football coach, and actor, who spends eighty to one hundred days each year as a visiting author in schools across Canada. He is the author of more than twenty books, including Old Man, which was shortlisted for the Forest of Reading White Pine award, and Numbers which won the Sakura Medal in Japan. He lives in the foothills west of Claresholm, Alberta.

The Unravelling

A memoir, told through illustrations and text, of one family’s journey through mental illness, dementia, caregiving, and the health care system.

Olivier Martini and his mother, Catherine, have lived together since he was diagnosed with schizophrenia thirty-six years ago. It hasn’t always been a perfect living situation, but it’s worked — Catherine has been able to help Olivier through the ups and downs of living with a mental illness, and Olivier has been able to care for his aging mother as her mobility becomes limited, and Olivier’s brothers Clem and Nic have been able to provide support to both as well. But then Olivier experiences a health crisis at the exact same time that his mother starts slipping into dementia.

The Martini family’s lifelong struggle with mental illness is suddenly complicated immeasurably as they begin to navigate the convoluted world of assisted living and long-term care. With anger, dry humour, and hope, The Unravelling tells the story of one family’s journey with mental illness, dementia, and caregiving, through a poignant graphic narrative from Olivier accompanied by text from his brother, award-winning playwright and novelist Clem Martini.

  • Biography & Memoir
  • Illustrator/artist
  • Nonfiction

Olivier Martini

Olivier Martini’s sketches, paintings, and prints have been displayed at the Marion McGrath Gallery and Studio Three Gallery, published in Alberta Views magazine, and were included as part of the Canadian Mental Health’s Copernicus project. Olivier’s previous collaboration with his brother Clem, Bitter Medicine: A Graphic Memoir of Mental Illness, was awarded the 2010 City of Calgary W.O. Mitchell Book Prize.

The Unravelling

A memoir, told through illustrations and text, of one family’s journey through mental illness, dementia, caregiving, and the health care system.

Olivier Martini and his mother, Catherine, have lived together since he was diagnosed with schizophrenia thirty-six years ago. It hasn’t always been a perfect living situation, but it’s worked — Catherine has been able to help Olivier through the ups and downs of living with a mental illness, and Olivier has been able to care for his aging mother as her mobility becomes limited, and Olivier’s brothers Clem and Nic have been able to provide support to both as well. But then Olivier experiences a health crisis at the exact same time that his mother starts slipping into dementia.

The Martini family’s lifelong struggle with mental illness is suddenly complicated immeasurably as they begin to navigate the convoluted world of assisted living and long-term care. With anger, dry humour, and hope, The Unravelling tells the story of one family’s journey with mental illness, dementia, and caregiving, through a poignant graphic narrative from Olivier accompanied by text from his brother, award-winning playwright and novelist Clem Martini.

  • Biography & Memoir
  • Illustrator/artist
  • Nonfiction

Clem Martini

Clem Martini is an award-winning playwright, novelist, and screenwriter who has written for both adults and young people. A professor of drama at the University of Calgary, he has over thirty plays and ten books of fiction and non-fiction to his credit. His YA trilogy, The Crow Chronicles, has been translated into six languages. His texts on playwriting, The Blunt Playwright and The Greek Playwright, are used at universities across Canada.