Toronto, Ontario

WOTS Festival Marketplace

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Harbourfront Centre | 10am - 5pm


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Saturday, September 21, 2019

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Celebrate more than 150 years of Canada with 150 books.

Andrew Westoll Recommends

Nocturne by Helen Humphreys

Nocturne (2013)

(From Helen Humphreys' site)

Martin Humphreys, Helen's younger brother, died from pancreatic cancer at the age of forty-five. He was a classical pianist who debuted at the royal festival hall in London at the age of twenty, and later became a piano teacher and senior examiner at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. The two siblings, though often living far apart, were bonded on many levels.

Nocturne is a memoir both about and for Martin. Speaking directly to her brother, Helen Humphreys lays bare their secrets, their early childhood together, and their intense love for each other. A heartbreaking memoir of grief and an honest self-examination in the face of profound pain, this poetic, candid and intimate book is an offering not only to the memory of Martin but to all those who are living through the loss of family and friends.

Helen Humphreys

(From Helen Humphreys' site)

Helen Humphreys is the author of four books of poetry, six novels, and two works of creative non-fiction. She was born in Kingston-on-Thames, England, and now lives in Kingston, Ontario.

Her first novel, Leaving Earth (1997), won the City of Toronto Book Award and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Her second novel, Afterimage (2000), won the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize, was nominated for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize, and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Her third novel, The Lost Garden (2002), was a 2003 Canada Reads selection, a national bestseller, and was also a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Wild Dogs (2004) won the Lambda Prize for fiction, has been optioned for film, and was produced as a stage play at CanStage in Toronto in the fall of 2008. Coventry (2008) was a national bestseller and was shortlisted for the Trillium Book Award and the Canadian Authors Association Award for Fiction. It was also a New York Times Editors’ Choice. The Reinvention of Love (2011) was longlisted for the Dublin Impac Literary Award and shortlisted for the Canadian Authors Association Award for Fiction. Her latest novel, The Evening Chorus was published in February of 2015.

Humphreys' work of creative non-fiction, The Frozen Thames (2007), was a #1 national bestseller. Her collections of poetry include Gods and Other Mortals (1986); Nuns Looking Anxious, Listening to Radios (1990); and, The Perils of Geography (1995). Her most recent collection, Anthem (1999), won the Canadian Authors Association Award for Poetry. Her most recent work of non-fiction is Nocturne (2013), a memoir about the life and death of her brother, Martin.

In 2009 Helen Humphreys was awarded the Harbourfront Festival Prize for literary excellence.

Helen Humphreys' fiction is published in Canada by HarperCollins, and in the U.S. by W.W. Norton and Harcourt Houghton Mifflin. Her UK publisher is Serpent's Tail and her Italian publisher is Playground.