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Heart to Heart with Ron Sexsmith - An interview for Deer Life Blog Tour

I had a chance to read Ron Sexsmith's fairytale Deer Life in its infancy arc state. It's an ambitious book that reads more like poetry than a novel. Somehow this didn't surprise me. Ron Sexsmith is after all a songwriter, and if you follow him on Twitter, a witty, witty writer. You can read my review written a few months ago. 

When I was asked by Dundurn Press (publisher) if I would do an author interview, I jumped at the chance. Here's what he had to say about the book, his creative influences and most of all what's next.


Who has been your musical influence growing up? Did you ever meet them? If so, what was that like?
Ray Davies of the Kinks, Elton John, Gordon Lightfoot, Paul McCartney and Leonard Cohen
And yes, I've actually met them all and except for Elton, I've also sang with them all too.

What inspired you to write a book? Did you struggle with the format? Writing songs verses writing a novel?
The story inspired me. I never had an idea for a story b…

Toronto Eats Up The Best Banana Bread From Pusateris

I don’t claim to be a good cook (recipe books provide me the roadmap I need to carve out my claim to fame in the kitchen), but if there’s one thing I am proud to make over and over again, it’s my famous banana bread. It’s a fairly simple recipe (something I like about it), one that I’ve perfected over the years with modifying the proportions of sugar and banana slightly. I’ve always loved this comfort, compact version of my banana bread, one that I whip up on a lazy Saturday morning in the hopes of taking it to work the following week. But sadly, it rarely makes it past Sunday night. Sure it’s delicious and easy, with a handful of ingredients, and is the epitome of comfort food…but, I've always felt the need for some validation that my recipe was of top chef calibre, one that I would perhaps find behind the well-lit dazzling glass counters at Pusateris Fine Foods or Holt Renfrew Café in Yorkville.
For years, I'd keep an eye out for another version of a banana bread recipes. Mos…

If Apples Had Teeth by Milton Glaser

Silly. Creative. Thinking outside the box. If Apples Had Teeth by renowned graphic designer Milton Glaser (the guy who was responsible for the I love NY graphic), is an absolute delight. So simple in its execution, yet so multifarious in its interpretation.
How do words interact with images? How can you have fun with language? How can you make language interesting for the younger generation? When silly meets smart, and poetry and story combine, there’s something magical that happens.  A refreshing book that takes on a new take on words and makes playtime (and learning time) just a little more enjoyable. 

A Stranger in the House by Shari Lapena

After the massive success of her thriller The Couple Next Door, Shari Lapena is back with A Stranger In The House. Shari certainly seems to be obsessed with the concept of neighbours, relationships and secrecy. In The Couple Next Door, it was a case of how well do you know your neighbours, coupled with the kidnapping of a baby. In this new book, Stranger In The House, it’s still about neighbours, this time being nosey (who can’t relate), and not minding their own business. 
The novel centres around a mysterious situation – a major accident – that devastates the life of one couple and lays the foundation of a mystery. It’s a normal night….so it seems. Karen Krupp is cooking dinner, waiting for her husband to come home. But here’s where the mystery begins. Why did Karen run out recklessly in the middle of the night, without her purse or a note for her husband…something totally out of character for her? What was she doing in a sketchy part of town? A very careful driver at the best of tim…

Mothers and Other Strangers by Gina Sorell

Can you outrun your lies? That is the premise of Mothers and Other Strangers by debut author Gina Sorell. It has a great opening line, that hooks you in, and keeps you reading, in the anticipation that you find out the end of that story.
The protagonist is Elsie, a thirty-something year old woman who returns to Toronto following the death of her mother. She’s had a tumultuous relationship with her mother (which daughter can’t relate to this?), and somehow hopes that this will be the closure she needs. But, she soon finds that there she has more questions than answers, and is also pulled into a web of deceit spun from her mom’s entire lifetime, going right back to the time when Elsie was conceived. 
While she confronts her mother’s past, she must inevitably confront her own, and the journey is psychologically draining.
We read on, hoping that the journey will provide Elsie a catharsis. With a few minor plot twists and a blast into the past, the story seems to move two steps forward and on…

Salman Rushdie is back with The Golden House

It’s the triumphant return of the man who took controversy and made a brand out of it. The book releases September 5th, but I was lucky to receive an advanced copy from the publisher. Salman Rushdie’s The Golden House is a story of epic proportions. Secrets, family saga, and betrayals, ingratiate this page-turning mystery that takes us from the shores of Mumbai to New York’s Greenwich Village.
Nero Golden is the patriarch who has come to America with his three adult sons. The eccentric billionaire’s past is unclear, and creates some curiosity (understandably) amongst the community, in particular for René – who happens to be the lens through which we navigate the novel.
Like all billionaires, Nero Golden’s life revolves around money, and this also seeps into his relationships with his sons. They are always at an arms length, knowing that at any moment he could take away their allowance. The sons, have an expectation that they will inevitably inherit their billionaire father’s fortunes…th…

Hum If You Don’t Know The Words