Russell Wangersky’s Burning Down the House, was the winner of the 2009 BC National Non-Fiction Prize, the Rogers Cable Non-fiction Prize (NL) and the Edna Staebler Award for Non-Fiction. It was also chosen as a Top 100 Books of 2008 by The Globe & Mail, and was shortlisted for the 2008 Writers Trust Award. Wangersky’s first short story collection, The Hour of Bad Decisions, was longlisted for the 2006 Scotiabank Giller Prize and shortlisted for the 2006 Commonwealth Writer’s Prize. His second collection, Whirl Away, won the 2013 Thomas Head Raddall Atlantic Fiction Award and was shortlisted for the 2012 Scotiabank Giller Prize and the BMO Winterset Prize. He is also the author of one novel, The Glass Harmonica, and a profile of the political career of former Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Danny Williams. His newest novel, Walt, was released in the fall of 2014 and won the CBC Bookie Award.
Wangersky lives and works in St. John’s, Newfoundland where he is TransContinental Media’s Atlantic regional columnist. For this work he has won the 2011 National Newspaper Award (NNA) for editorial writing.
Russell Wangersky was born in New Haven, Connecticut, and raised in Nova Scotia, Canada, where his father was a professor of oceanography at Dalhousie University and his mother, a marine biologist. He attended Acadia University, choosing philosophy over the family tradition of science, and edited the university’s literary magazine, Alpha. He also signed up, during those university years, to be a volunteer firefighter in Wolfville, NS, the inspiration for his award-winning memoir.
He has since worked as a researcher in the Queen’s Park bureau of Southam News, spent five years as a reporter at the Sunday Express and five years at CBC Television. In 2002, Russell became The Telegram’s editor. He lives in St. John’s with is family, and divides his days between the newspaper and his other writing.
The Path of Most Resistance (stories) (House of Anansi, 2016)
A dark new psychological thriller. (Canada: House of Anansi (2014); French: Place des Editeurs; German: Droemer. Winner of the CBC Bookie Award for Best Thriller.
|The Glass Harmonica
After Keith O’Reilly witnesses the murder of his neighbour by a pizza delivery man one night during a snowstorm, a unique series of stories begins to unfold.(Thomas Allen, 2010) 2010 BMO Winterset Award
|For Burning Down the House “Burning Down the House is such a raw book. In this haunting meditation on fate and chance, he literally takes you there.”
-The Globe and Mail”This is not the tabloid heroism of the breathless headlines. Wangersky handles these scenes with a terse candour, balancing an in-the-moment experiential quality with a keen eye for detail. Wangersky documents his steady spiral into post-traumatic stress disorder with a frankness that is at once brutal and emotionally devastating. The sad irony for Wangersky and his colleagues in the firehall is that such sacrifices make the heroism that much more significant.”
|For The Hour of Bad Decisions “It’s as if the wickedly observant Alice Munro and the bawdy Al Purdy had produced a love child, by way of a gritty newsroom…”
– Toronto Star