New Star Blogs

Finally, Michael Turner comes back to #TORONTO!


It’s been a while since Michael Turn­er last read in Toron­to. And to make up for it this month, the eclec­tic artist and writer has a slew of events lined up in the city that might nev­er win the Stan­ley Cup, if they can’t man­age it in the next cou­ple of sea­sons.

Turn­er will be doing a talk at OCAD Uni­ver­si­ty dur­ing the day on Mon­day Jan­u­ary 21st, and lat­er that evening, par­tic­i­pat­ing in Frost­bite: A Lit­er­ary Ice­break­er of an Evening, which is also a fundrais­er for Nellie’s Shel­terAnoth­er Sto­ry Book Shop will be on hand to sell books, includ­ing 9x11.

Oth­er Frost­bite read­ers include Erin Moure, author of Sit­ting Shi­va on Minto Avenue, by Toots, and nine oth­er authors. The fol­low­ing evening on Tues­day, Jan­u­ary 22nd, Michael Turn­er will per­form at the Art Bar Read­ing Series, one of Canada’s most cel­e­brat­ed series and a great oppor­tu­ni­ty to get a signed copy of Turner’s new poet­ry book. 

For a quick refresh­er course on the poet’s first poet­ry title in near­ly a quar­ter cen­tu­ry, let’s take a look at some recent reviews.

In her Geor­gia Straight review oF  9x11 and oth­er poems like Bird, Nine, X and Eleven, Shazia Hafiz Ramji writes: “In unpre­ten­tious and straight­for­ward prose, Turn­er guides us into con­fronting the con­fu­sion and cacoph­o­ny of the city, plac­ing facts and speech beside images tuned in to cri­tique,” con­clud­ing apt­ly that “Turner’s frank, hum­ble, and humor­ous voice trans­ports us through the dif­fi­cult present of hous­ing in Van­cou­ver, while con­sid­er­ing the inti­mate work that goes into build­ing rela­tion­ships and the last­ing mag­net­ism of nar­ra­tive and speech.”  

In his review, poet / edi­tor / cura­tor / crit­ic rob mclen­nan wrote: “In short, sharp lyric turns, Turn­er blends the dai­ly mun­dane with the hor­rif­ic, artic­u­lat­ing how eas­i­ly such ter­ror becomes mut­ed, pre­sent­ed and even­tu­al­ly dis­missed, writ­ing out wars in oth­er places, and left far behind, yet with a vio­lence that often per­se­veres; car­ries through, is car­ried, and con­tin­ued.”

Jonathan Ball of the Win­nipeg Free Press calls Michael Turn­er “a nation­al trea­sure”, declar­ing it “bril­liant, strange, dark and even fun­ny,” and filled with “stark ele­gance.”