Established in 1966, Argo Bookshop is Montreal's oldest independent Anglophone retail bookstore. With only 200 square feet to stock 6000 titles, we take great care in keeping a choice selection. We have something for everyone, and if you don't find what you are looking for, we will gladly order it for you.

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Opening hours:

Mon-Fri 10h-19h
Saturday 12h-17h

Location:

1915 Ste Catherine W.
Montreal, Quebec
Tel: 514-931-3442

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Events:

Monthly: Argo Open Mics & Featured Reading Series!

Keep yourself posted through our website for all upcoming events! Check us out on Facebook or Twitter.

Feel free to check out recordings from past events either here on the site, or on our MixCloud account.


Blog and Book Reviews

New & Latest Arrivals: Bargain Books – (10/23/2014)

As promised, here’s the second batch of bargain books! We’ve accumulated so much, we’ve decided to post a list of select titles, complete with links to reviews and overviews from The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Washington Post, authors’ websites and the New York Times. Come by when you can, these titles are going fast!

NEW & LATEST BARGAIN ARRIVALS: A SELECTION

 

  • Organic Crops in Pots by Deborah Schneebeli-Morrell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

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Published October 23rd, 2014 in New & Latest Arrivals

New & Latest Arrivals (Bargain Books) – 10/22/2014

The levee’s broken, and another flood of bargain books has been released! Many thanks to all of you who have come by the shop to peruse and pick up the new titles that have been coming in through our door. You’ll find a list of new bargain titles below, and we wish to note one thing: Some of these books have since sold since the time the photos were taken! While we’ve marked down which of these titles have sold, we wish to remind you that reservations for anything you see below are more than welcome. Just give us a call or send us an email specifying which titles you’d like to pick up.

 

 

  • Reality Sandwiches by Allen Ginsberg (sold)
  • Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke (sold)
  • One Hundred Poems from the Japanese by Kenneth Rexroth ($5)
  • The Enormous Room by E.E. Cummings ($5)
  • Pictures from Brueghel by William Carlos Williams ($2)
  • Selected Poems of Ezra Pound (sold)
  • The Gate by Natsume Soseki (NYRB edition, $6)
  • Three Tragedies by Frederico Garcia Lorca ($7)
  • 100 Selected Poems by E.E. Cummings (sold)
  • The Selected Poems of Li Po ($5)
  • The Spirit Level by Seamus Heaney ($2)
  • A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway (sold)
  • Handwriting by Michael Ondaatje ($8)
  • The Selected Poems of Carl Sandburg ($5)

 

 

  • Tree of Smoke by Denis Johnson ($6)
  • 1984 by George Orwell (sold)
  • On Writing by Stephen King (hardcover, $5)
  • Dylan Thomas: Collected Poems, 1934-1953 ($5)
  • Opening a Mountain: Koans of the Zen Masters ($6)
  • Nightwood by Djuna Barnes ($8)
  • Falling Man by Don DeLillo ($5)
  • Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer ($7)
  • Beowulf translated by Seamus Heaney ($9)
  • The Klondike by Zach Worton ($6)
Add a comment »

Published October 22nd, 2014 in New & Latest Arrivals

Bargain Books Have Returned!

Our Bargain section has been reinstated, with new titles being added every month!

 

 

While a new shipment is coming soon of even more bargain books, here’s a list of some of the gems we currently have in stock:

  • Poor People by William T. Vollman ($15)
  • Mauve Desert by Nicole Brossard ($7)
  • The She-Devil in the Mirror by Horacio Castellanos Moya ($9.25)
  • Holy the Firm by Annie Dillard ($8)
  • The Collapse of Globalism by John Ralston Saul ($10)
  • Louis Zukofsky: Selected Poems, edited by Charles Bernstein ($12)
  • Across the Bridge by Mavis Gallant ($5)
  • Next Episode by Hubert Aquin ($3)
  • The Colombian Mule by Massimo Carlotto ($7)
  • John Dryden: Oxford Poetry Library Edition ($5)
  • Markings by Dag Hammarskjold ($5)
  • The Box Man by Kobo Abe ($9.50)

  • The Zen Teaching of Huang Po ($8)
  • Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond ($8)
  • The Amazing Adventures of Cavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon ($5)
  • Three Novellas by Thomas Bernhard ($10)
  • A View from the Bridge / All My Sons by Arthur Miller (out of print edition, $9)
  • Wittgenstein’s Mistress by David Markson ($9)
  • Chourmo by Jean-Claude Izzo ($8)
  • Confessions of Dan Yack by Blaise Cendrars ($9)
  • Le Flaneur by Edmund White ($10)
  • Roof Life by Svetlana Alpers ($12)
  • The Doors of Perception & Heaven and Hell by Aldous Huxley (out of print edition, $5)
  • We Meet by Kenneth Patchen ($10)
  • As a Man Grows Older by Italo Svevo (NYRB edition, $10)
  • Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood ($5)
  • The Enchanted Wanderer by Nikolai Leskov (Melville Novella, $6)
  • American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis (UK edition, $6)

 

…& more to come!

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Published October 16th, 2014 in Announcements, New & Latest Arrivals

October Newsletter + New & Latest Arrivals (10/01/2014)

October arriveth, and so does a batch of new arrivals and monthly events. The fall season brings all kinds of excellent books to the shop, so be sure to check out the selection of literature in the new arrivals section of this post. And don’t forget: Our hiatus from events is over, people! We’ll be hosting reading which newly-published authors from NeWest Press, poets from Montreal and abroad, and our Argo Open Mic is back up and running. Lastly, consider picking up a copy of our Book of the Month, John Darnielle‘s Wolf in White Van (nominated for this year’s National Book Award), and/or joining us for our Book Club in November: We’ll be reading Satantango by László Krasznahorkai, winner of the 2013 Best Translated Book Award.

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Book of the Month: 20% off

Wolf in White Van by John Darnielle

 

Wolf‘s structure, in which plot dances around an unspeakable memory that must be teased out of the text, is not new — but Darnielle is a master at building tenderness from this unspecified grief.” (Carman Maria Machado, “The Monstrous And The Beautiful Dance In ‘White Van’”, NPR)

Many know this novel’s author as the multi-instrumentalist, writer and composer for the band The Mountain Goats, but we assure you: He’s a damn good novelist too. Those familiar with John Darnielle‘s music can find intersecting narrative and thematic consistencies in his debut novel Wolf in White Van, namely from its treatment of adolescent introspection, but the format of the novel has given Darnielle more room to breathe.

The novel follows Sean Phillips, a young man disfigured by an accident which forces him to spend most of his time indoors. Secluded, Sean begins a mail-order game company that distributes text-based adventure games, the most popular of which is Trace Italian, a game where players navigate and attempt to survive a post-apocalyptic America populated by roving gangs of mutagenically infected people. However, Sean’s future as a game writer is compromised by a pair of teenagers who follow the path of their characters in Trace Italian  down to the last syllable, an excursion that results in death and Sean is to blame.

 

New & Latest Arrivals

We’re just starting to catch up on our new arrivals, but for now, we’ve picked what we could from this season’s bevy of releases. Some of titles listed here are even currently being restocked, and reservations/special orders are welcome. Expect another post on new arrivals midway through the month!

As new books come in, we’ll be posting about them here on our website as well as on Facebook and Twitter. No matter how you choose to keep in touch with us, we’ll be sure to let you know.

Click the title of a book to view information on or a review of that title, or just search for them in our catalogue (recommended for price checks).

 

LITERATURE & POETRY

 

 

Our Next Book Club Title

 

Our next read will be Satantango by László Krasznahorkai:

Known as the inspiration for the filmmaker Béla Tarr’s six-hour masterpiece of the same name, Satantango is a “spellbinding, bleak, and hauntingly beautiful book”, a testimony that it’s the devil who “has all the good times.” Winner of the 2013 Best Translated Book Award from the online literary periodical Three Percent, the story of Satantango is told over the course of several rainy days in an unnamed hamlet, with readers following its scant inhabitants in their misery of being stuck in the middle of nowehere. “Schemes, crimes, infidelities, hopes of escape, and above all trust and its constant betrayal are Krasznahorkai’s meat.” (New Directions)

On November 19th, we’ll get together to discuss the book over some drinks. Everyone’s welcome, and anyone partaking receives a 15% discount off the book. If you would like to join in for our monthly discussions, send an email to argobookshop@gmail.com in order to receive regular updates.

 

 

Events for the Month of October

#1

Argo Featured Reading #27:

NeWest Press Presents

Marguerite Pigeon & Laurence Miall

Monday, October 6th

@ Argo Bookshop

Doors @ 7PM, Reading @ 7:30PM

Marguerite Pigeon’s gifts for quick characterization and muscular dialogue are on full display in (her first collection of short stories Some Extremely Boring Drives), where you will encounter competitors in an endurance race at the edge of the world; the secret lives of stray cats, and those who try to catch them night after night; an interview with a once-famous musician who seems to be losing touch with reality; a date in Mexico City that ends in a kidnapping; a woman who comes face to face with her mirror image and finds that she’s taken another path; and a girl who’s determined to never, ever stand still again.” (NeWest Press)

Marguerite Pigeon is a former journalist and traveller turned writer of fiction and poetry. In 2001 she lived for several months near the Honduran-Salvadoran border working with a local indigenous organization, an experience that became the inspiration for her first novel, Open Pit. She later attended UBC’s Creative Writing MFA program. Since graduating, her short stories and poems have appeared in journals throughout Canada and internationally, and her first book of poetry, Inventory (Anvil, 2009), was nominated for the Gerald Lampert Award. Some Extremely Boring Drives is her first book of short stories.  Originally from Blind River, Ontario, she currently lives in Vancouver.

 

“In Blind Spot, debut novelist Laurence Miall crafts an unforgettable literary antihero, a man disconnected from the pain of those around him, yet blind to his own faults: When his parents’ car is hit by a train, Luke, a failed actor, returns to his Edmonton hometown to attend their funeral, wrap up their affairs, and prepare their house to be sold off. But while all others around him grieve, Luke remains detached, striking up a relationship with a woman in a neighbouring house… and stumbling across evidence that his mother may have engaged in a longstanding extramarital affair herself.” (NeWest Press)

Laurence Miall is a Montreal-based writer who spent his childhood in England before emigrating to Edmonton at the age of 14. Miall has contributed to The Edmonton Journal and his short stories have been finalists in the Summer Literary Awards contest and Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers. Blind Spot is his first novel.

 

#2

A Poetry Reading with

Ricardo Sternberg & Michael Harris

Thursday, October 16th

@ Argo Bookshop

Doors @ 7PM, Reading @ 7:30PM

Some Dance doesn’t so much mark a departure from Sternberg’s previous work as continue to plot a trend, an evolution from the folkloric and fantastic to the secular and contemporary. Written in the voice of an “inveterate optimist,” Some Dance finds Sternberg taking account of his world, his life, and bestowing to it the dignity of his style, transforming it like the inveterate optimists of the insect world, “The Bees,” with “the trick (or is it wisdom?) / that allows them to distil / from the thorn of grievance, / the sweetest honey.” He takes us through his encounters with charlatans and stoned surgeons, lost loves, failed marriages, dead friends and relatives, the dictionary, a fridge full of expired food and more, and attends to each with the same verbal precision, panache and pathos, so that the unerring consideration of his aesthetic becomes a kind of ethical invigilation, the redemption of imperfect lives by perfect phrases… Ricardo Sternberg is one of the absolute best poets in this country. No s–t.” (from Michael Lista @ The National Post)

On October 16th, we’ll be hosting a reading by Montreal-based poet Michael Harris and Canadian-Brazilian poet Ricardo Sternberg who published his new collection Some Dance earlier this year. “Some Dance is a meditation on stories, the intersection of stories, of things made up, of things imagined, and of things lived – perhaps. Tricks played by memory, scrambling events from life with fiction, are a constant.” (McGill-Queen’s University Press)

Ricardo Sternberg‘s poetry has been published in magazines such as The Paris Review, The Nation, Poetry (Chicago), Descant, American Poetry Review, The Virginia Quarterly and Ploughshares.
Michael Harris is a two-time winner of the CBC Literary Competition, he also has edited poetry books and anthologies and translated the complete poetry of Marie-Claire Blais. He runs Montreal Books, a rare and used Internet bookshop. He lives in Montreal, Quebec.

 

#3

The Argo Open Mic is Back! (#29)

Wednesday, October 29th

@ Argo Bookshop

Doors @ 7PM, Reading @ 7:30PM

Featured in Canadian Notes and Queries‘ Montreal issue (#89) and online reviews and mentions by websites like LikeaLocalGuide and MTLBlog, the Argo Open Mic has been running since November 2011 as an open platform for Montrealers to read their work to a like-minded public.

Grab all those poems, stories, anecdotes, songs and opinions you penned over the summer and come on by to read for 5 to 10 minutes. Emerging and established authors alike are encouraged to participate. Join us for a drink and a jazz session at Grumpy’s Bar (1242 Rue Bishop) afterwards.

 

 

September Newsletter + New & Latest Arrivals (09/01/2014)

So, students, it’s time to head back to school, which means our shelves are packed to the brim once more. It also means our in-store events are still on a hiatus during the month of September, but we’ve written up the events that will be taking place in the month of October below. So don’t worry, the readings will resume again soon enough! Be sure to check out what we have to offer for new arrivals for the beginning of the month as well, with inbound updates as the month continues.

Want a copy of the September newsletter for offline browsing?

Argo Bookshop Newsletter – September 2014

 

Book of the Month: 20% off

Arcanum 17 by André Breton

 

Half-hidden among the dreams, soliloquys and recollections is the book’s real purpose–to question the very way of being that had brought the world to such a horrible pass.” (Publishers Weekly)

Written during a trip to Quebec’s Gaspe Peninsula in the months after D-Day in 1944, when the Allied troops were liberating Occupied Europe, André Breton’s Arcanum 17 is a book of both prose and poetry, both reality and dreams. “Using the huge Percé Rock—its impermanence, its slow-motion crumbling, its singular beauty—as his central metaphor, Breton considers issues of love and loss, aggression and war, pacifism, feminism and the occult”. (Green Integer)

Excellently translated by Zack Rogow, co-winner of the 1993 PEN-Book-of-the-Month Translation Prize for his co-translation of Breton’s Earthlight, and published in Green Integer’s handy-dandy pocketbook form, this book is an excellent piece of surrealism for poetry and prose lovers alike.

 

New & Latest Arrivals

Out of what’s listed below, we recommend you check the latest novel from Murakami, the incisive work of Frantz Fanon, and the oddly-compelling poetry of the Black Mountain poet Edward Dorn and of Pablo Picasso (yes, the painter!). Don’t forget to check out our newly-arrived copy of George Elliott Clarke‘s Traverse and The Griffin Poetry Prize Anthology of 2014.

Seeing as it is textbook season at the store, the first post of New Arrivals in the store will be momentarily slim. However, as new books come in, we’ll be posting about them here on our website as well as on Facebook and Twitter. No matter how you choose to keep in touch with us, we’ll be sure to let you know when we’re packing our copies of, say, the highly anticipated Bone Clocks by David Mitchell. Stay tuned!

Click the title of a book to view information on or a review of that title, or just search for them in our catalogue (recommended for price checks).

 

LITERATURE & POETRY

  • MaddAddam by Margaret Atwood (paperback edition)

 

WRITING

 

PHILOSOPHY & SOCIAL SCIENCES

 

TRAVEL

 

 

Our Next Book Club Title

 

Our next read is Why Does the World Exist?: An Existential Detective Story by Jim Holt:

“Whether framed philosophically as “Why is there a world rather than nothing at all?” or more colloquially as “But, Mommy, who made God?” the metaphysical mystery about how we came into existence remains the most fractious and fascinating question of all time. Following in the footsteps of Christopher Hitchens, Roger Penrose, and even Stephen Hawking, Jim Holt emerges with an engrossing narrative that traces our latest efforts to grasp the origins of the universe.”

- (Liveright Books)

On September 25th, we’ll get together to discuss the book over some drinks. Everyone’s welcome, and anyone partaking receives a 15% discount off the book.

If you would like to join in for our monthly discussions, send an email to argobookshop@gmail.com in order to receive regular updates.

 

 

In Anticipation: October’s Events

#1

Argo Featured Reading #27:

NeWest Press Presents

Marguerite Pigeon & Laurence Miall

Monday, October 6th

@ Argo Bookshop

Doors @ 7PM, Reading @ 7:30PM

Marguerite Pigeon’s gifts for quick characterization and muscular dialogue are on full display in (her first collection of short stories Some Extremely Boring Drives), where you will encounter competitors in an endurance race at the edge of the world; the secret lives of stray cats, and those who try to catch them night after night; an interview with a once-famous musician who seems to be losing touch with reality; a date in Mexico City that ends in a kidnapping; a woman who comes face to face with her mirror image and finds that she’s taken another path; and a girl who’s determined to never, ever stand still again.” (NeWest Press)

Marguerite Pigeon is a former journalist and traveller turned writer of fiction and poetry. In 2001 she lived for several months near the Honduran-Salvadoran border working with a local indigenous organization, an experience that became the inspiration for her first novel, Open Pit. She later attended UBC’s Creative Writing MFA program. Since graduating, her short stories and poems have appeared in journals throughout Canada and internationally, and her first book of poetry, Inventory (Anvil, 2009), was nominated for the Gerald Lampert Award. Some Extremely Boring Drives is her first book of short stories.  Originally from Blind River, Ontario, she currently lives in Vancouver.

 

“In Blind Spot, debut novelist Laurence Miall crafts an unforgettable literary antihero, a man disconnected from the pain of those around him, yet blind to his own faults: When his parents’ car is hit by a train, Luke, a failed actor, returns to his Edmonton hometown to attend their funeral, wrap up their affairs, and prepare their house to be sold off. But while all others around him grieve, Luke remains detached, striking up a relationship with a woman in a neighbouring house… and stumbling across evidence that his mother may have engaged in a longstanding extramarital affair herself.” (NeWest Press)

Laurence Miall is a Montreal-based writer who spent his childhood in England before emigrating to Edmonton at the age of 14. Miall has contributed to The Edmonton Journal and his short stories have been finalists in the Summer Literary Awards contest and Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers. Blind Spot is his first novel.

 

#2

A Poetry Reading with

Ricardo Sternberg & Michael Harris

Thursday, October 16th

@ Argo Bookshop

Doors @ 7PM, Reading @ 7:30PM

Some Dance doesn’t so much mark a departure from Sternberg’s previous work as continue to plot a trend, an evolution from the folkloric and fantastic to the secular and contemporary. Written in the voice of an “inveterate optimist,” Some Dance finds Sternberg taking account of his world, his life, and bestowing to it the dignity of his style, transforming it like the inveterate optimists of the insect world, “The Bees,” with “the trick (or is it wisdom?) / that allows them to distil / from the thorn of grievance, / the sweetest honey.” He takes us through his encounters with charlatans and stoned surgeons, lost loves, failed marriages, dead friends and relatives, the dictionary, a fridge full of expired food and more, and attends to each with the same verbal precision, panache and pathos, so that the unerring consideration of his aesthetic becomes a kind of ethical invigilation, the redemption of imperfect lives by perfect phrases… Ricardo Sternberg is one of the absolute best poets in this country. No s–t.” (from Michael Lista @ The National Post)

On October 16th, we’ll be hosting a reading by Montreal-based poet Michael Harris and Canadian-Brazilian poet Ricardo Sternberg who published his new collection Some Dance earlier this year. “Some Dance is a meditation on stories, the intersection of stories, of things made up, of things imagined, and of things lived – perhaps. Tricks played by memory, scrambling events from life with fiction, are a constant.” (McGill-Queen’s University Press)

 

#3

The Argo Open Mic is Back! (#29)

Wednesday, October 29th

@ Argo Bookshop

Doors @ 7PM, Reading @ 7:30PM

Featured in Canadian Notes and Queries‘ Montreal issue (#89) and online reviews and mentions by websites like LikeaLocalGuide and MTLBlog, the Argo Open Mic has been running since November 2011 as an open platform for Montrealers to read their work to a like-minded public.

Grab all those poems, stories, anecdotes, songs and opinions you penned over the summer and come on by to read for 5 to 10 minutes. Emerging and established authors alike are encouraged to participate. Join us for a drink and a jazz session at Grumpy’s Bar (1242 Rue Bishop) afterwards.

 

 

Add a comment »

Published September 1st, 2014 in Announcements, Events, New & Latest Arrivals

August Newsletter + New & Latest Arrivals

Hello, Montreal! Perhaps we will be seeing more of you all since the closure of a downtown Chapters outlet was announced? Only time will tell if the predictions (see the article connected to the link) of Vehicule Press co-publisher Simon Dardick will come to pass. For now, we’ll just keep doing what we do, and we promise we won’t start selling teapots and novelty corkscrews… In other news, the results of our mini poll shows that one of the most anticipated reads for the autumn season is a tie between Consumed by David Cronenberg (yes, the director) and Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami. Many thanks to everyone who voted. Seems we’re all about Murakami this month! Read on to find out more.

For those of you who don’t know, in-store events will be on a hiatus from July to September, and we’ll resume again in the month of October. Keep an eye out for our September newsletter if you wish to see the upcoming fall events.

Want a copy of the August newsletter for offline browsing?

Argo Bookshop Newsletter – August 2014

 

Book of the Month: 20% off

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running 

by Haruki Murakami 

…The neuroses and obsessions of the runner leap from every page… The style is very clipped, many of the sentences short, so you feel the pace of the runner skipping through the text.” (Alastair Campbell, The Guardian)

A memoir of vivid and revelatory qualities, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is more than just a journal of his struggles to prepare for and complete New York City’s 62-mile ultramarathon. Full of intimate moments, from meditations on where his obsessions of writing and running intertwine, to his ‘eureka moment’ when he decided to become a writer, this book is a great read for newcomers to his work as well as long-time appreciators.

Born on January 12th, 1949, Haruki Murakamis a contemporary Japanese writer who has been translated into 50 languages. His best-selling books have been published in millions of copies. His works of fiction and non-fiction have garnered critical acclaim and numerous awards, both in Japan and internationally.

 

New & Latest Arrivals

The month of August brought us a lot of successful titles now available in paperback, from Eleanor Catton‘s The Luminaries to Margaret Macmillan‘s The War That Ended Peace, but we’ve brought a lot of other interesting books new to the shop as well! Take, for example, new additions to our art section: We’ve brought in a book of beautiful drawings by Kurt Vonnegut and Letter of Note, which “attempt(s) to gather and sort fascinating letters, postcards, telegrams, faxes, and memos.” The latter art title still has a website which updates regularly. We would also like to draw your attention to the latest and most excellent work by Karyn L. Freedman, found in the History& Social Sciences below. Lastly, local author Muriel Gold has been so kind as to drop off her whole canon of criticism on drama! Not too much exists online about her work, so we suggest you come by the shop to check them out.

Click the title of a book to view information on or a review of that title, or just search for them in our catalogue (recommended for price checks).

 

LITERATURE & POETRY

  • Agostino by Alberto Moravia (NYRB edition)
  • White Noise by Don DeLillo (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition) 

 

LITERARY CRITICISM & PHILOSOPHY

 

ART

 

HISTORY & SOCIAL SCIENCES

 

DRAMA (LOCAL AUTHOR)

  • Tell Me Why Nights Are Lonesome by Muriel Gold
  • Drama Across the Curriculum: The Fictional Family in Practice by Muriel Gold
  • The Dramatic Legacy of Dorothy Davis and Violet Walters: The Montreal Children’s Theatre, 1933-2009 by Muriel Gold
  • A Gift for Their Mother: The Saidye Bronfman Centre Theatre: A History by Muriel Gold
  • Therapy Through Drama: The Fictional Family by Muriel Gold
  • The Fictional Family: In Drama, Education and Groupwork by Muriel Gold

 

 

Our Next Book Club Title

 

Our next read is Why Does the World Exist?: An Existential Detective Story by Jim Holt:


“Whether framed philosophically as “Why is there a world rather than nothing at all?” or more colloquially as “But, Mommy, who made God?” the metaphysical mystery about how we came into existence remains the most fractious and fascinating question of all time. Following in the footsteps of Christopher Hitchens, Roger Penrose, and even Stephen Hawking, Jim Holt emerges with an engrossing narrative that traces our latest efforts to grasp the origins of the universe.”

  (Liveright Books)

 On September 25th, we’ll get together to discuss the book over some drinks. Everyone’s welcome, and anyone partaking receives a 15% discount off the book.

If you would like to join in for our monthly discussions, send an email to argobookshop@gmail.comin order to receive regular updates.

 

Add a comment »

Published August 5th, 2014 in Announcements, New & Latest Arrivals

Poll: Fall Release Anticipation

Add a comment »

Published July 23rd, 2014 in Uncategorized

July Newsletter + New & Latest Arrivals (07/02/2014)

The sun. The goddamned sun. As we broil and boil during the first of these heavy summer months, there’s nothing more we’d like than to hit the shores of the nearest body of water with a cold drink, some shade and a book. Wouldn’t you? And while we can now enjoy the long-awaited heat we craved since winter, it has become a bit too hot for in-store events. For those of you who don’t know, in-store events will be on a hiatus from July to September, and we’ll resume again in the month of October.

Want a copy of the July newsletter for offline browsing?

Argo Bookshop Newsletter – July 2014

 

Book of the Month: 20% off

Omon Ra by Victor Pelevin 

Chosen for its absurdity and fluid style, July’s book of the month tells the story of Omon, a young Russian man who yearns to fly to the stars as a cosmonaut. In a rush to actualize his dreams, he abandons his family and enlists himself in flight school, determined to be chosen for the Soviet Space Agency’s next moon-bound project. Doubts begin to arise, however, once Omon is submitted to mysterious drug tests, substandard space exploration technology (leather jackets as spacesuits and bicycle-powered moonwalkers), and the orders and speeches of the Soviet Dr. Strangelove that is Colonel Urgachin.

Victor Pelevin was born on November 22, 1962 in Moscow, and attended the Moscow Institute of Power Engineering, and the Institute of Literature.

“…In light of the truth-is-stranger-than-fiction state of contemporary Russian society, some of the Soviet-era satire seems oddly tame. Nevertheless, as captured in Bromfield’s superb translation, Pelevin is blessed with a distinctive mix of eloquence and nervous energy, inventive storytelling and subversive wit.” (Publishers Weekly)

 

New & Latest Arrivals

Now that Canada Day has come and gone, you may recall some of the fantastic Canadian literature we brought in last month, all of which are highly recommended. In addition to those authors, some highlights of our new arrivals include Book 3 of Karl Ove Knausgaard‘s My Struggle, the Collected Prose Translations of John Ashbery, Hugo Ball’s Flametti from Wakefield Press… all that in addition to new and beautiful local author titles in the store, Su J. Sokol‘s Cycling to Asylum, Matt Murphy‘s A Beckoning War and Dean Garlick‘s Chloes.

Click the title of a book to view information on or a review of that title, or just search for them in our catalogue (recommended for price checks).

 

LITERATURE

  • Chloes by Dean Garlick (local author)

 

POETRY

  • Personae: The Shorter Poems (Revised Edition) by Ezra Pound

 

FILM & ART

  • Mao by Claude Hudelot & Guy Gallice

 

SOCIAL SCIENCES

 

SCIENCE

 

CRITICISM & THEORY

 

Book Club Update

 

Our next read is… Fatale by Jean Patrick Manchette:

Whether you call her a coldhearted grifter or the soul of modern capitalism, there’s no question that Aimée is a killer and a more than professional one. Now she’s set her eyes on a backwater burg—where, while posing as an innocent (albeit drop-dead gorgeous) newcomer to town, she means to sniff out old grudges and engineer new opportunities, deftly playing different people and different interests against each other the better, as always, to make a killing. But then something snaps: the master manipulator falls prey to a pure and wayward passion.” New York Review of Books

“In France, which long ago embraced American crime fiction, thrillers are referred to as polars. And in France the godfather and wizard of polars is Jean-Patrick Manchette… [H]e’s a massive figure… There is gristle here, there is bone.” —The Boston Globe

On July 10th, we’ll get together to discuss the book over some drinks. Everyone’s welcome, and anyone partaking receives a 15% discount off the book.

 

 AND DON’T FORGET:

The Ste-Catherine Street Sidewalk Sale!

 JULY 12th and 13th

The street is closed to automobiles in order to accommodate the huge crowds that turn out for this annual event. Dancers, singers and DJs are on hand to create a festive atmosphere. Stores will be outside so that bargain hunters can take advantage of the biggest sale of the year.

Come by the shop and check out what we have to offer!

June Newsletter + New & Latest Arrivals (06/03/2014)

 

We think it’s safe to say summer’s in full swing, which means it’s time to get some sun and fresh air while enjoying your books, whether it’s a light novel by Mina Loy, a book of Bukowski‘s poems, the whole of Thomas Piketty‘s Capital in the Twenty-First Centuryor new Canadian poetry and prose by David Adams RichardsMike Spry, Jenna Smith, Cora Sire, Jacob Wren, Zoe Whittal and Jon Paul Fiorentino. 

There’s lots of events this month to check out as well: We’ll start off with Brian Bartlett, who will be reading from his new book Ringing Here & There with accompanying readings from Mark Abley, Maxianne Berger, David Manicom, Carole TenBrink, and Robyn Sarah. Then, the Montreal-based publisher DC Books will be holding a poetry reading with Greg Santos and John McAuley. Thirdly, we’ve got great triple-header Featured Reading with poets Daniel Renton, Marc di Saverio Gary Barwin. Lastly, it’s our last Open Mic of the summer until we resume again in October! Read on for more info.

Want a copy of the June newsletter for offline browsing?

Argo Bookshop Newsletter – June 2014

 

Book of the Month: 20% off

Insel by Mina Loy

 

insel

“German painter Insel is a perpetual sponger and outsider—prone to writing elegant notes with messages like “Am starving to death except for a miracle—three o’clock Tuesday afternoon will be the end”—but somehow writer and art dealer Mrs. Jones likes him. Together, they sit in cafés, hatch grand plans, and share their artistic aspirations and disappointments. And they become friends. But as they grow ever closer, Mrs. Jones begins to realize just how powerful Insel’s hold over her is.” (Melville House Books)

Unpublished during Loy’s lifetime, Insel is the only novel published by the surrealist master Mina Loy. Written in the 1930s, during which time Loy continued to engrain herself into the artistic bohemia of Paris and New York, this new edition published by Melville House Books includes an alternate ending recently found in the archives of Loy’s work.

 

New & Latest Arrivals

Click the title of a book to view information on or a review of that title, or just search for them in our catalogue (recommended for price checks).

 

LITERATURE

  • Uvantas Favourite by Martin Wright (local author)

 

POETRY

  • Red Doc> by Anne Carson (paperback edition)
  • Corona: The Selected Poems of Paul Celan
  • Pybrac by Pierre Louys
  • You Get So Alone At Times That It Just Makes Sense by Charles Bukowski

 

MUSIC & ART

 

SOCIAL SCIENCES & WOMENS STUDIES

 

TRAVEL

 

SCIENCE & PHILOSOPHY

 

KIDS

 

SMALL PRESS

 

Book Club Update

 

Our next read is… Fatale by Jean Patrick Manchette:

Whether you call her a coldhearted grifter or the soul of modern capitalism, there’s no question that Aimée is a killer and a more than professional one. Now she’s set her eyes on a backwater burg—where, while posing as an innocent (albeit drop-dead gorgeous) newcomer to town, she means to sniff out old grudges and engineer new opportunities, deftly playing different people and different interests against each other the better, as always, to make a killing. But then something snaps: the master manipulator falls prey to a pure and wayward passion.” New York Review of Books

“In France, which long ago embraced American crime fiction, thrillers are referred to as polars. And in France the godfather and wizard of polars is Jean-Patrick Manchette… [H]e’s a massive figure… There is gristle here, there is bone.” —The Boston Globe

On July 10th, we’ll get together to discuss the book over some drinks. Everyone’s welcome, and anyone partaking receives a 15% discount off the book.

 

June’s Events

#1

Brian Bartlett Reads from 

Ringing Here & There: A Nature Calendar

(with Special Guests)

Wednesday, June 11th

@ Argo Bookshop

Doors @ 7PM, Reading @ 7:30PM

You are cordially invited to celebrate the publication of Ringing Here & There: A Nature Calendar by poet Brian Bartlett alongside readings from Mark Abley, Maxianne Berger, David Manicom, Carole TenBrink, and Robyn Sarah.

Ringing Here & There is a diary of nature writing whose execution is comparable to that of Thoreau’s Walden and Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. Following the arc of one spring season to the next, this book’s 366+ entries, from field reports to sketches and collages, are immediately grounded in Nova Scotia and span out to further travels in Alberta, Nebraska, New York and Ireland.

Winner of both the Atlantic Poetry Prize and Acorn-Plantos Award for People’s Poetry, Brian Bartlett is the author of seven full-length collections of poetry. He has been honoured with two Malahat Review Long Poem Prizes and first prize in the Petra Kenney poetry awards, and has edited volumes of selected poetry by Don Domanski, James Reaney, and Robert Gibbs.

 

#2

DC Books Summer Reading:

Greg Santos & John McAusley

Friday, June 13th

Argo Bookshop (1915 Ste. Catherine West)

Doors at 7PM, Reading at 7:30PM

Come join poets Greg Santos and John McAuley for a night of high-falutin’ wordplay as they read from their books Rabbit Punch! and All I Can Say for Sure.

“The poems in McAuley’s All I Can Say for Sure range from personal archaeology and elegiac fictions of free translations to grammar wordplay for the initiated to a compassionately ironic look at the passing of life to rewired material extensions of our inner and outer spaces. McAuley’s meditations upon the details of quotidian life and historical personae are rendered with the syntactical precision of a linguist and the metaphorical density of a riddler.” (DC Books)

John McAuley is one of the original Vehicule poets, a group which formed in the mid-1970s around the alternative gallery Vehicule Art and the printing operation Vehicule Press, and was instrumental in the publication of the group’s landmark anthology The Vehicule Poets.

“In Rabbit Punch!, Marco Polo reminisces on his friendship with Kublai Khan over deli sandwiches, Wilfred Owen and Ernest Hemingway trade war stories at Hooters, and Senator John McCain remembers that fateful day when his father took him to eat bubble gum ice cream. With punchy poems that are intimate, dark, enigmatic, playful, and surreal, peppered with pop culture figures ranging from Batman, to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Paris Hilton to “Macho Man” Randy Savage, Rabbit Punch! delivers a poetic KO.” (DC Books)

Greg Santos is the author of The Emperor’s Sofa (DC Books). He holds an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School in Manhattan. Greg is a poetry editor for carte blanche and teaches the art of verse to at-risk youth. He lives in Montreal with his wife and two children.

 

#3

Argo Featured Reading #26:

Daniel Renton, Marc di Saverio and Gary Barwin

Friday, June 20th

Argo Bookshop (1915 Ste. Catherine West)

Doors at 7PM, Reading at 7:30PM

Come to the Argo on Friday, June 20th for a three-part reading with poets Daniel Renton, Marc di Saverio, and Gary Barwin!

 

Daniel Kincade Renton has been published in a variety of Canadian journals and anthologies, including Prism international, Hazlitt, CV2, The Fiddlehead, The Fish Quill Poetry Boat 2010-2013, and Sifted: A Collection of Work by Participants at the Banff Centre Writers’ Studio, 2011. He was the guest-host of Readings at the Common in Toronto for the 2014 winter season and has a chapbook forthcoming with Frog Hollow Press.

Marc di Saverio hails from Hamilton, Ontario. His poetry and translations have appeared in such outfits as The Dalhousie Review, Misunderstandings, Modern Haiku, Haiku Scotland and Maisonneuve Magazine. Recently Simply Haiku named him one of “the top ten world’s finest living English haiku poets for the year 2011″. He will be reading from his debut collection, Sanatorium Songs (Palimpsest Press 2013), and more.

Gary Barwin is a poet and fiction writer of numerous titles, and a composer and performer. His music and writing have been performed and broadcast in Canada, the U.S. and Europe. Barwin is also the author of several books for kids, including Seeing Stars, which was nominated for a CLA YA Book of the Year and an Arthur Ellis Award.

 

Barwin’s most recent book of poems is Moon Baboon Canoe, full of “witty and surprising poems confront subjects as diverse as time machines, elves, hummingbirds, birth and cows, yet manage to explore the perennial themes of poetry: delight, mortality, childhood, love, the natural world and squirrels. It is a moon-guided, baboon-paddled canoe of a book, and around each bend in the river we find the sources of our strength: consolation, goofiness and joy.” (Mansfield Press)

 

#4

Argo Open Mic #28:

Last One of the Summer!!!

Wednesday, June 25th

Argo Bookshop (1915 Ste. Catherine West)

Doors at 7PM, Reading at 7:30PM

Montrealers! Come read some of your work for 5 to 10 minutes at our Open Mic! For those of you who might not know: Every month, the Argo Bookshop hosts this open venue for people to share their writing, music, articles and comedy. Bring your friends and enjoy the evening! Make sure to come early to sign up and save yourself a spot!

…Following this session, the Argo Open Mic will be on a hiatus during the months of July, August and September. If we don’t see you in June, we hope we’ll see you in the fall!

 

“From Behind an Ancient Cash Register” by Meaghan Acosta, Argo Co-Owner

 

Again. Again, today, I was asked if I read. Considering I sit behind the cash register of a small independent book store, day in and day out, surrounded with literature, poetry and philosophy, this question baffles me. It’s baffling but also incredibly insulting. I congratulate these folks on their courage to ask what might be the most absurd and demeaning question available to them while in the book store. I also congratulate them on their grace as their jaws drop when I answer in the positive, adding that I am also an owner of the place.

On several days out of a given week, customers walking in may find themselves face-to-face with a woman sitting behind the cash register of our little shop. When she’s not researching titles to add to the shop’s distilled collection, she can give you great recommendations based out of experience, intuition and intelligence. Her name is Meaghan Acosta, a co-owner and indelible member of the partnership since November 2011, when the Argo entered its fourth generation of ownership.

Recently, the online journal of general literary excitement Encore Magazine published an incisive article written by Meaghan Acosta about her experience as both a female bookseller and business owner in lieu of the original author Norm Sibum‘s current hiatus (whose posts are also a recommended read).

But enough with any further digression: This fantastic article is culled together from experiences as a book retailer in the past three years, and it offers numerous revelations not only on the treatment of women in the ‘workplace’ (bookselling and abroad), but also in the world of literature at large:

 

I am forced, for the sake of stocking shelves, to sift through many catalogues put out by publishers. I say forced because rarely am I satisfied with what I find there. Random House is perhaps the best example of what I detest about the publishing industry at the moment. If one were to go through their front list simply by looking at the covers of the books, one would surely notice the fact that almost every book written by a woman is packaged in a rigid and formulaic manner. Generally, there is an image of a woman, or parts of a woman, composed in such a way as to evoke feelings of forlornness, helplessness/brokenness, melancholy and/or loss. The font is almost always cursive and ‘pretty’ and the blurbs, more often than not, contain at least one review from a women’s magazine such as Elle,Vogue or Vanity Fair. These magazines are filled with trite, mostly fashion and beauty-related articles. Following a brief stint in high school during which I read these things, I have never since gone to them, particularly for my reading list, lest I contract illiteracy while stuck in that purgatorial region that births articles with titles like:Panty trade: women who sell their underwear to men. Seriously.””

 

The article as a whole is at once supplementary to oft-shared articles by writers like Roxane Gay and websites like Everyday Sexism, but also stands apart as a two-tiered perspective on the experience of disseminating and digesting the literary in a gender-stilted world. As much as we will tell ourselves, and go so far as to establish in ‘official’ capacities, it’s important to remind ourselves that the preconceptions and pitfalls are still there, however dwindling or omnipresent we consider them to be.

 

R E A D   T H E   F U L L   A R T I C L E   H E R E

 

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Published May 13th, 2014 in Announcements, Recommendations