I was introduced to Talonbooks via the Governor General’s Awards some years back, though it was hardly Talon’s first time being recognized at the prestigious awards ceremony. The Canadian publisher has a four-decades-long history of book awards to their name, and when you read their catalog, it’s easy to see why.
Talonbooks has been a consistent source for unique drama and poetry since their start in 1967. In the 80s, the team at Talon added literary fiction and non-fiction to their catalog. (To get a small sense of their breadth of interest, compare Full-Metal Indigiqueer—Joshua Whitehead’s poetry collection that interweaves Two-Spirit tradition with pop culture and the apocalypse—with Susan Crean’s memoir, Finding Mr. Wong.) More recently, Talonbooks has included translated titles to their list, such as the vicious, surreal fantasy epic Zora, a Cruel Tale written by Québécois author Phillippe Arseneault and translated by Fred A. Reed and David Homel. With over 500 titles in print and a dedication to diverse literary styles and voices, Talonbooks continues to be one of Canada’s preeminent independent publishers.
Learn more about Talonbooks’ “Mandate” by reading the excerpt below.
“To publish work of the highest literary merit by world class authors from the mainstream and the margins of Canada’s three founding nations, as well as from both visible and invisible minorities within Canada’s cultural mosaic, and to work with all of our authors to build their national and international literary careers throughout their active writing lives.”
By Chelsey Slattum