Toronto Book Awards – Featuring Fauna

The 2011 Toronto Book Awards is being covered by our guest blogger Christine Sweeton. To read more about her, click here.


Featured at last year’s Great Books Marquee at The Word On The Street, Alissa York’s Fauna was released in 2010.

“Fauna is the sort of rare novel that can change the way you see your world. Its cast of misfits and dreamers is united by their visceral connection to the forgotten animals surviving in the green patches of our big cities. This book is beautiful, unusual and memorable. And Alissa York is a daring and original talent.” – Jim Lynch, author of Border Song

Fauna follows Edal Jones, a federal wildlife officer on a short leave of absence from her stressful job catching animal traffickers at the Toronto International Airport. One of her early morning bike rides through the city leads her to downtown where she discovers an interesting young teenager rescuing birds that have fallen to the ground after flying into the many Toronto skyscrapers. Edal follows the girl into the Don Valley and watches as she disappears behind a fenced off auto wreckers yard. The wrecking yard is owned by Guy Howell, a handsome animal lover. Guy’s only employee is a young soldier with a heart condition.

The judges at The Toronto Book Awards describe the novel as follows:

“With a unique cast of characters drawn from the margins of society, Fauna vividly brings us into the hidden veins of our urban landscape’s half-tamed ravines. Illuminating the resilience of the natural world in our midst, Alissa York engages us with her narrative ingenuity and the powerful poetic cadence of her refreshing and finely-crafted prose. Fauna is a tale that could only be set in Toronto – a Toronto with us every day but rarely noticed.”

Stay tuned for my review of Fauna By Alissa York (Random House of Canada).


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