Hello writers, and happy long weekend to our fellow Canadians! While this weekend goes by many names across the country (Victoria Day Weekend, May long, and the correct name: May two-four), it means the same thing to us all: the first long weekend of summer. It also means the Kobo office will be closed from Friday the 21st until Monday the 24th.

Speaking of Kobo, we shared a very exciting announcement this week: our newest eReader, the Kobo Elipsa is coming soon! Our first eReader with a stylus, the Elipsa allows readers to easily take notes and highlight passages while they’re reading, and you can make your own notebooks as well! I, for one, can’t wait to get my hands on one. You can learn more about the newest Kobo device here:

Kobo Elipsa Pack

Capture endless ideas Our largest 10.3″ glare-free touchscreen is the first to feature Carta 1200 E Ink technology for a faster display, quicker page turns, and deeper contrast. For when it’s late, you can adjust brightness with ComfortLight to read and write at night or try out Dark Mode for white text on black.

Now let’s take a look at what’s been happening in the publishing industry!

Storytel is partnering with Spotify to help distribute audiobooks to Storytel customers.

Storytel partnering with Spotify – making audiobooks even more accessible for Storytel customers – Storytel

Later in 2021, Storytel subscribers will be able enjoy Storytel’s library of audiobooks on Spotify by linking the two accounts. The partnership with Spotify enhances Storytel’s distribution and accentuates our vision of making the world a more creative and empathetic place by making stories accessible to anyone, anywhere and at any time.

Audible has launched an Indigenous Writers’ Circle.

Audible launches Indigenous Writers’ Circle program | CBC Books

Audible has launched a writing workshop aimed at boosting the voices of Indigenous peoples in Canada. The six-month mentorship and workshop program is for emerging First Nations, Inuit and Métis writers in Canada who are looking to work with established Indigenous authors to create their stories.

And while we’re discussing audiobooks, this is a great piece on the growing need for trans and nonbinary narrators as more and more trans and nonbinary books are published.

How Trans And Nonbinary Actors Are Revolutionizing Audiobooks

When Avi Roque auditioned for their first audiobook in November 2019, the Latinx, trans, and nonbinary actor used their phone to record a few sample pages from . The paranormal young adult romance by trans author Aiden Thomas follows a Latinx and trans teenage boy who accidentally summons a ghost he can’t get rid of.

The Evening Standard and Netflix are joining forces to launch a storytelling festival.

The Evening Standard and Netflix launch a storytelling festival

The line-up for the three-day Stories Festival, at Picturehouse Central, includes Line of Duty writer Jed Mercurio and singer Will Young, who will be in conversation with Rob Rinder about his memoir To Be a Gay Man. Young, who is currently writing a novel, will help judge a stories competition launched alongside the festival.

Torontonians love of libraries is more evident than ever after we set a world record of 8-million digital downloads in 2020.

Toronto library sets world record with 8 million digital download during pandemic

TORONTO — Canadians are known for being avid readers and that includes the citizens of Toronto as the city has a library system with the highest digital circulation in the world. The Toronto Public Library system has 100 branches and while they’re normally an excellent place to browse physical books and other resources, most have had to close at various points throughout the pandemic.

We touched on this in the last roundup, but here’s another interesting piece on the publishing industry’s identity crisis.

Who deserves a book deal?

Book publishing is having an existential crisis. The industry is finding itself saddled with deals by polarizing political figures, and no idea how to handle them. Which, in turn, gives rise to some fundamental questions about the purpose of publishing. Is the industry’s purpose to make the widest array of viewpoints available to the largest audience possible?

The author of a banned children’s book explains why taking away books about diversity can do more harm than good.

The Book I Wrote Was Just Banned. I’m Fighting To Get It To Every Kid I Can.

Last month, I was stunned to see that the children’s book I wrote made the front page of the News Reporter in Columbus County, North Carolina. Reading on, I learned that the local school district had banned my book ” One of a Kind, Like Me/Único como yo,” calling it “age-inappropriate.”

Valeria Luiselli has won the Dublin literary award for her novel, Lost Children Archive.

Valeria Luiselli wins €100,000 Dublin literary award for Lost Children Archive

Earlier this year, a library in Barcelona submitted a nomination for its favourite book of the year: Mexican author Valeria Luiselli’s Lost Children Archive. On Thursday, thanks to Biblioteca Vila De Gràcia, Luiselli was named winner of the world’s richest prize for a novel published in English, the €100,000 (£86,000) Dublin literary award.

John le Carre’s last novel is set to be published this fall.

John le Carré’s last complete novel to be published in October 2021 | CBC Books

Viking Canada will be publishing John le Carré’s last full-length novel Silverview on Oct. 12, 2021. Silverview comes 60 years after the publication of le Carré’s first novel, Call for the Dead, and will be released during the week that would have marked his 90th birthday.

Hot off the heels of her latest release, Stacey Abrams has secured a new 2 book deal.

Doubleday Acquires Two New Stacey Abrams Thrillers

Doubleday and Anchor Books have acquired North American rights for two new political thrillers by Georgia politician Stacey Abrams. Both of the new novels will feature Avery Keene, the star of Abram’s latest novel, While Justice Sleeps, which was published May 11 and has already sold more than 130,000 copies.

LeVar Burton has announced the first three books for his book club!

Take a look: The LeVar Burton Book Club is launching with three great picks

The former Reading Rainbow host tells EW about his new book club and his journey as a lover of literature. To put it in terms he himself would not use, reading is LeVar Burton’s brand.

Two new Harry Potter shows are in the works to celebrate the franchise’s 20th anniversary

‘Harry Potter’ conjures two new TV specials for ‘Sorcerer’s Stone’ 20th anniversary

Wizarding World will bring a quiz competition series and a retrospective special to HBO Max, Cartoon Network, and TBS later this year. The Harry Potter movie franchise is ringing in its 20th anniversary with two new TV projects. In celebration of two decades since Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was released on Nov.

I really enjoyed this piece on adapting literature for the screen from the perspectives of two literary greats.

Colson Whitehead and Margaret Discuss the Challenges of Adaptation

The acclaimed authors discuss the experience of having their novels The Underground Railroad and The Handmaid’s Tale adapted for television

And last but not least, as always, my favourite piece of the week: An essay on summer reading and how the pandemic has changed our reading habits (probably for the better).

Did the Pandemic Change Summer Reading for Good? I Hope So.

With our calendars cleared last year, many of us found more time to lose ourselves in books. Let’s hold onto that vibe this year. Credit… Red Nose Studios The summer of 2020 was a dud when it came to barbecues, vacations, family reunions, pedicures and swiping a lick from someone else’s ice cream cone.

Have a wonderful and safe long weekend, everyone!

Staff Pick

Joni, Author Engagement Specialist

I have two! I haven’t finished it yet, but this week I’ve been reading The Girls Are All So Nice Here by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn which I’m really enjoying. It’s a dark psychological thriller about 2 women returning to college for their 10-year reunion, and having to face up to what they did in the past. Also, since I’m very excited about the Friends reunion, I would also like to take a moment to plug I’ll Be There For You, which is a really fun read for any fan of the show!

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