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Unraveling Isobel

By Elizabeth Hand

Unraveling Isobel is Eileen Cook’s fifth work of young-adult fiction to date, and if my reading the entire novel in one sitting is any indication of her aptitude for it, I’d say she’s got it. She is a talented writer with a clear and steady style. She is enticing and subtle. Her female characters are realistic, strong, and manage to avoid the usual pitfalls of teen protagonists by being totally honest.

Unraveling Isobel is the story of a quirky seventeen-year-old named Isobel. She’s a girl in the midst of more than her fair share of life-changing upheavals. Her mother is getting remarried which means that the family is moving her away from her school and her friends to a secluded island at the start of her senior year of high school. Her new stepfather seems to have it out for her, her stepbrother is a total babe…

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The CCWWP: What on Earth is a Writer’s Conference like?

 Before I left on my trip to the CCWWP in Toronto, people asked me, “What exactly do you do at a writer’s conference?” Though I made things up, I didn’t actually know.

I figured we’d talk about the state of the publishing industry or the fate of the Creative Writing Program in Canada. There would definitely be lots of talk about the frontiers of poetry. Believe me, no one really wants to hear about the theoretical frontiers of poetry (even poetry lovers, like me), but people love to tell you about them.

Here’s how it went:

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