The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls and Educated by Tara Westover are national bestsellers penned by American authors which continue to be top picks for book clubs across the country. But readers don’t need to look south of the border to find compelling true stories. Here are two unforgettable, unflinching and (at times) even uncomfortable memoirs by two new Canadian authors.
In My Own Moccasins: A Memoir of Resilience by Helen Knott. This story is dedicated to ‘the women who cannot remember and for those who choose not to.’ During one of her alcohol-and-drug-induced blackouts, Helen was found half-naked in roadside ditch, left for dead after a violent sexual assault. This was not her first blackout moment or her first sexual assault. In My Own Moccasins takes readers on an unsettling journey through Helen’s years of addiction, and her heart-wrenching attempts at withdrawal.
Despite her devastating life experiences, in 2016 Helen was one of sixteen global change makers featured by the Nobel Women’s Initiative for being committed to end gender-based violence. She was also selected as a 2019 RBC Taylor Prize Emerging Author. And so, this is also her story of healing and above all her resilience.
Mistakes to Run With by Yasuko Thanh. How does a bright, promising young student, honour-roll even, end up as a teen sex worker on the streets of Vancouver? And, how does that same broken woman manage to leave her addictions and criminal life dealing sex and drugs on the streets to become an award-winning author?
Growing up in a loveless family and struggling with depression – Thanh has written since childhood, and continues writing through her feelings of isolation and abandonment at the hands of her family and society. She is not afraid to share these raw feelings, her mistakes and her story in this gritty, no-holds barred true account.
- Mistakes to Run With is a Globe and Mail National Bestseller
- Refinery29’s “11 Books We Can’t Wait To Read This Spring
- One of CBC’s “12 Canadian books coming out in April we can’t wait to read”