Like Any Other Monday
A novel by Binnie Brennan
Gaspereau Press, publisher
“Every word counts in this spare, finely-voiced and evocative tale set in the world of vaudeville…”
~ Carol Bruneau, author of Glass Voices: A Novel
After breaking up the family act in 1916, Keatonesque comedic performer Billy Pascoe retreats to Muskoka to consider his prospects as a solo performer. Instead, Pascoe discovers an unlikely partner and straightman in Lucinda Hart, one half of a disbanded song-and-dance sister act. While still wrestling to mesh their vastly different experiences of…Read Full Description
A Certain Grace
Short Stories by Binnie Brennan
Quattro Books, publisher
In the tradition of short story writers Alice Munro and Carol Shields, Binnie Brennan examines the minutiae of ordinary life. During a tipsy night out escaping the frustrations of daily routines, two middle-aged school teachers try their luck at scoring a joint. A long-haul trucker drives an injured butterfly to its breeding ground in Florida, giving them both a much-needed migration. And while struggling with the death of…Read Full Description
A novella by Binnie Brennan; Quattro Books, publisher
~ Longlisted for a 2010 ReLit Award
~ Shortlisted for a 2010 Atlantic Book Award
(The Margaret and John Savage First Book Award)
~ Co-winner of the 2009 Ken Klonsky Novella Prize
Harbour View weaves together the stories of the residents and staff in a nursing home overlooking Halifax Harbour. Memories drawn from the rich and…Read Full Description
A Spider’s Tale – Written by Binnie Brennan
In November, 2007, Symphony Nova Scotia and the Dalhousie University Theatre Department collaborated on a production based on a children’s story of mine. Our aim was to get children excited about symphonic music, literature and the theatre through the adventures of Trixie Spider and her friends. Boy, did we succeed!
A Spider’s Tale
A Spider’s Tale had its beginnings some years ago at a concert in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. While we were playing, something twitched above me, and before I knew it a spider had lowered itself from the stage lights onto my viola. I watched, helpless, as it jiggled on the D-string. Then it jumped down between the strings onto the belly of the instrument, and hopped over the side to safety. Phew!
The writer in me began thinking up all sorts of “what-ifs”, and before long I began scribbling about Trixie Spider and her friends. The story had many incarnations before finding its home with Symphony Nova Scotia and Dalhousie Theatre.
All eight shows sold out to audiences of all ages. On opening night a weeping three-year-old had to be removed from the audience. I was busy onstage playing in the orchestra, so I just assumed she was tired, but later I was told she was bereft because she didn’t want Brianna Bee to go away! It was a thrill to see the children at the school matinee performance on the edge of their seats during the chase scene, and having fun conducting with Maestro Mouse. I received a stack of fan letters from a Grade Three class in attendance; when I read that children wanted to play the viola, or to become an actor, or to write a play, I knew our job was done.
I was surprised and flattered to hear that the local children’s bookstore had requests from customers who had seen the production and wanted to buy A Spider’s Tale in book form. So far, it doesn’t exist. But I remain optimistic that someday there will be a beautifully illustrated picturebook of A Spider’s Tale, perhaps with an accompanying CD.