Please join Chelene Knight to celebrate the Vancouver launch of her highly anticipated new book, Dear Current Occupant, a creative nonfiction memoir,about home and belonging set in the 80s and 90s of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.
When: Sunday, March 25,
Time: from 5-7pm
Cottage Bistro, 4470 Main St, Vancouver, BC
Host/Emcee: Meharoona Ghani
With guest readers: Simone Chnarakis & Jonina Lynn Kirton
Simone Chnarakis is a 14 year old girl who is currently a grade 9 student attending sir Charles Tupper Secondary. She was born in Vancouver b.c and is half Jamaican and half Greek. She enjoys writing because she enjoys all the types of writing styles there is and it allows her to express her creativity. Her favourite writing style is free. When she’s not writing, you may find her playing basketball, the alto saxophone, soccer, gymnastics or Mario kart!
Jónína Kirton is a Métis/Icelandic poet/author and facilitator. She was born in Treaty One (Portage la Prairie, Manitoba). She currently lives in the unceded territory of the Musqueam, Sḵwxwú7mesh, and Tsleil-Waututh. A Room Magazine Editorial Board member she is one of the co-founders of their new reading series, Indigenous Brilliance, an exciting new partnership with Massy Books. Kirton received the 2016 Vancouver’s Mayor’s Arts Award for an Emerging Artist in the Literary Arts category. Her first book of poetry, page as bone ~ ink as blood, was published with Talonbooks in 2015. Two years later she brought us her second collection, An Honest Woman, again with Talonbooks. Betsy Warland had this to say about An Honest Woman: “Kirton picks over how she was raised familially and culturally like a crime scene.”
Music by What it is! (whatitissoul.com)
Book sales by The Paper Hound Bookshop.
Free and open to all!
Accessibility information: Fully accessibly entrance and accessible washrooms.
Praise for Dear Current Occupant:
“Knight is a poet at heart, somewhat disinclined to follow the dusty rules of prose writing, and we are all richer for it. This memoir is built from shards of pure resilience, expertly pieced together into a compelling—and at times devastating—chronicle of youth, family, and sense of place. From Clark Drive to Commercial and Broadway, Dear Current Occupant is a love song to East Vancouver—it is a map of scars, and as everyone knows, scars make for good storytelling.” —Carleigh Baker, author of Bad Endings, finalist for the 2018 Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize
“Dear Current Occupant is an astonishing book: haunting, intimate, and deeply rendered. A lyrical memoir set against the backdrop of Vancouver’s gritty East Side, it triumphantly melds together prose, poetry, letters and imagery, to illuminate the pain of un-belonging, the search for a home, and the power of words to heal and transform us. It is a book that boldly takes risks, unafraid and brimming with raw energy, tenderness, and heartbreaking beauty. Chelene Knight emerges as a fierce new voice in Canadian literature, deserving of our full attention.” —Ayelet Tsabari, author of The Best Place on Earth
“I want to thank Chelene Knight for not forcing her memoir into a point “a” to b” narrative. Too often complex and stigmatized stories are dumbed-down, but Knight elevates! She uplifts both her her experiences and the poetic prose and hybrid forms used to share these experiences. Dear Current Occupant will surely become a nuanced creative touchstone that shows us how our stories of survival can and should be told.” —Amber Dawn, author of Sub Rosa and How Poetry Saved My Life: A Hustler’s Memoir