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Zoe Whittall Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Bottle Rocket Hearts (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Holding Still For As Long As Possible (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Middle Ground (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best Kind of People (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Spectacular (2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Fake (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon
Wild Failure: Stories (2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Poetry Collections

The Best Ten Minutes of Your Life (2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Emily Valentine Poems (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Precordial Thump (2008)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

Geeks, Misfits and Outlaws(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
Red Light: Superheroes, Saints, and Sluts(2005)Description / Buy at Amazon

Zoe Whittal is an accomplished Canadian novelist, poet, and television writer. She has not only had her novels published but her poetry collections as well.

Zoe was born on February 16, 1976. The artist was born in Quebec in the Eastern Townships and grew up when she was a kid on the outskirts of South Durham on a farm. She would attend Dawson College and graduate from the Montreal establishment in 1995. She would then go to Concordia University, a period ranging from 1995 to 1997. The author then pursued creative writing, graduating in 2009 from the University of Guelph with her Master of Fine Arts.

Whittal grew up on a farm but lived in Montreal during the time period of the early nineties. Since 1997, she has called Toronto her home. She has worked in small press publishing and as a reporter of the arts and now also works as a writer for television.

Her novel Bottle Rocket Hearts would be her big novel debut in 2007. The book came out to much positive reception and has been named best book of the year by Globe and Mail and one of the top ten ‘essential’ Canadian novels of the decade by Canada Reads of the CBC.

The acclaim did not stop there as she won the Dayne Ogilvie Grant from the Writers’ Trust of Canada in 2008 for best gay emerging writer (the author identifies as queer). She also served on the jury for the award in 2011, which elected Farzana Doctor as the recipient that year. Whittal kept writing, with her second novel Holding Still for as Long as Possible coming out in Canada in 2009 and the United States in 2010. The book has been optioned to be made into a film. It also made the shortlist for the 2010 ReLit Award. The American Library Association’s Stonewall Book Award in 2011 named it an honor book, and it also won the Lambda Literary Award.

The author kept writing, releasing short novellas such as The Middle Ground for Rapid Reads from Orca Books. She has also released poetry books and edited a short fiction anthology (2003’s Geeks, Misfits & Outlaws).

Whittal would have her third novel The Best Kind of People published in 2016 in Canada. It made the shortlist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. It also spent twenty-six weeks on the best seller list, was named Heather’s Pick, Best Book of the Year by Indigo, Best Book of 2016 by Toronto Life, Globe and Mail Best Book, and the Best Book of 2016 by Walrus Magazine. The film rights have also been optioned by Sarah Polley, who is attached to write and direct.

That same year, Whittal also received the K.M. Hunter Artist Award for literature, which is given out to individuals that have shown that they have not only talent but the potential to go further and do more in their field.

In addition to writing novels and poetry, this multi-talented artist has also written for television shows including The Baroness Von Sketch Show, Schitt’s Creek, and Degrassi. She also won in 2018 in the category of best writing in a variety or sketch comedy series with many other collaborators, receiving a Canadian Screen Award for her quality contributions to the Baroness Von Sketch Show.

If you are a fan of intriguing debuts and like to check out the first novels from authors, look no further than Zoe Whittal’s 2007 work Bottle Rocket Hearts.

This is a story that takes place in Montreal, Canada, in the months that exist before the referendum in 1995. Riot Grrl ends up being bought out and is then changed, now being marketed to the masses as the Spice Girls.

Gay people are starting to gain some traction and get some legitimacy out in the world, but then there are also the queer people out there who are doing everything they can to riot and rebel against assimilation and becoming part of the rest.

AIDS is still widespread and causing panic, but the bright news when it comes to this is that the cocktails of drugs that are being thrown at the disease are actually starting to have an effect and might even be working, making a huge difference at a time where before that medical professionals were uncertain how to treat it.

Then there’s the city walls on Main on either side, boasting spray-paint that says ‘yes’ or ‘no’. It’s also been five years since the sex garage riots and OKA crisis. When you’re a character like Eve, even when you’re just eighteen years old, it seems like revolution is possible.

Eve lives with her parents in Dorval and wants to get out of their house and live her life. She’d love to find a girl out there that she wants to kiss and also wants to kiss her back too. This appears to happen when she meets a woman named Della. Della is mysterious to Eve, she’s not monogamous, she’s a separatist, and she is also ten years older than Eve is.

The two meet and are immediately high on their relationship. The two hide away in Della’s apartment, together and trying to navigate occasional jealousy. Romance and politics will come to a point on referendum night in 1995, where Eve starts becoming less innocent and will end up choosing what her fate is. What will she decide? Read this exciting debut to find out.

Holding Still for as Long as Possible is the second novel from Zoe Whittal, published in 2009. If you liked her first novel or are looking for something interesting to read, check this book out for yourself.

This is a story that takes place in Parkdale, a seedy neighborhood in Toronto that is slowly starting to gentrify. The book follows three different lives of characters that are interlocked and shows a look at not only the inside world of paramedics but of celebrities too with a little bit of gossip.

Read along and find out what it’s like to become an adult with the main political memory in your mind being the war on terror, with Hurricane Katrina and SARs in the background. Whittal gives the reader a portrait of a generation in literature of young adults that grew up on meds that fight anxiety, text messaging, and more that is definitely worth a try.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Zoe Whittall

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