Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The End Of The World As We Know It -- Nominated for 2008 White Pine Award

Lesley's Young Adult novel "The End of the World As We Know It" has been nominated for a 2008 White Pine Award.

Click here for more information about this prestigious award.

"Author Lesley Choyce has filled his latest book with quirky yet complex characters, and his adept portrayal of one teen's inner struggles - struggles that are not fuelled by extreme poverty, abuse, or neglect or any other external provocations - is at once profound and utterly realistic. Carson's story of subtle growth and quiet transformation will resonate with a wide range off readers. It is a beautifully honest book tinged with sadness, but ultimately filled with optimism and hope."
-- Atlantic Books Today (Halifax)

Book Description

"I hate the world and everything in it. And that includes me."

Asked to write something for English class that expresses who he really is, 16-year-old Carson takes pleasure in blistering the page with hate for everything in his life. Stuck in a private school for kids who have repeatedly flunked out elsewhere, Carson knows he's got nowhere lower to sink to. "Flunk Out Academy" is the last resort for Carson and his classmates, in a small town where its deeply troubled students are decidedly unwelcome.

Then Carson meets someone who is even less optimistic than he. Christine struggles to get by, living in a trailer by herself, abandoned by her mother and father, so desperate that she has become almost immune to the pain and loneliness.

Confronted by her deep sadness, Carson starts to care for her and she for him. Once focused on someone other than himself, he begins to notice the world around him and realize that there is beauty as well as hopelessness, love as well as hate. Together the two teenagers struggle to work out how they are going to live in an imperfect world. There are no easy happy endings, but somehow the journey eventually makes the pain worthwhile.

  • Reading level: Ages 9-12
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Red Deer Press; 1 edition (May 31, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0889953791
  • ISBN-13: 978-0889953796

If you like, you can order your copy from many online and bricks & mortar book sellers. Here are a few links for your convenience: ||

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Wave Warrior review

Wave Warrior. (Orca Soundings).

By Lesley Choyce
Victoria, BC: Orca, 2007.
105 pp., pbk. & cl., $9.95 (pbk.), $16.95 (cl.).
ISBN 978-1-55143-647-0 (pbk), ISBN 978-1-55143-649-4 (cl.).

Subject Heading:
Surfing-Juvenile fiction.

Grades 6-9 / Ages 11-14.

Review by Carole Marion.

Click here to read Carole Marion's review of Wave Warrior.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Book launch and author reading May 24 at 7 p.m. Halifax

Lesley Choyce will launch and read from his novel, The Republic of Nothing, the third new edition issued by Goose Lane Editions. The launch will take place at Just Us! Cafe on Barrington Street, Halifax, 7-8:30 p.m.

Free citizenship is available to anyone who wants to immigrate to the republic.

The third edition of the The Republic of Nothing has an afterward by Rush drummer, Neil Peart as well as a book club section for thought and discussion.

The Republic of Nothing opens in the early 1950s on Whalebone Island, off the coast of Nova Scotia, when Everett MacQuade marks the birth of his son by declaring the island's independence. From then on, mysterious happenings take place and refugees from the outside world find a place there. By the mid-1960s, the Republic of Nothing begins to succumb to the influences of the outside world. This is a story about resilience, independence, and anarchy.

The Republic of Nothing has been optioned by IMX Communications. Stay tuned for more details about when it will be filmed and where.

The Republic of Nothing is published by Goose Lane Books.

Monday, May 14, 2007

The End of the World As We Know It upcoming launch May 22, 2007

The End of the World As We Know It will officially launch at J.L. Ilsley High School in Halifax on May 22.

About The End of the World as We Know It
Asked to write an English class assignment that expresses who he really is, 16-year-old Carson takes pleasure in filling the pages with hate for everything in his life. Stuck in a private school for kids who have repeatedly flunked out elsewhere, he knows there's nowhere lower to sink. "Flunk Out Academy" is the last resort for Carson and his classmates in a small town where the deeply troubled students are decidedly unwelcome.

Then Carson meets Christine. She struggles to get by, living in a trailer by herself, abandoned by her mother and father. Confronted by her deep sadness, Carson starts to care for her -- and she for him and realizes there is enough beauty to fight against hopelessness, love to battle all hate. Together, Carson and Christine struggle to work out how to live in an imperfect world.

The End of the World As We Know It is published by Red Deer Press.

Archive available for online reader discussion

The Halifax Daily News wraps up its first session of BookTalk with Stephen Clare featuring Lesley Choyce's novel, The Republic of Nothing.
To view the archives of the author question and answer and other discussion, please click here.

The third edition of Choyce's award winning novel, The Republic of Nothing was released spring of 2007 by Goose Lane.

If you enjoyed The Republic of Nothing, you may also enjoy The Sea of Tranquility by Lesley Choyce.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Republic of Nothing wins online readers' poll

Online reader discussion of Republic of Nothing begins

Lesley Choyce's bestselling novel, The Republic of Nothing, won the first reader's poll at The Daily News to kick off the paper's new online reading group.

Click here to take part with this group that is reading the first 125 pages (17 chapters) this week (April 21 - 29, 2007).

The Republic of Nothing (reader’s guide edition) with an afterword by Rush’s Neil Peart is available through your library or for purchase at, and many other online book sellers, including the publisher: Goose Lane.

Please click here to join us.

The Republic of Nothing
By Lesley Choyce
Paperback: 382 pages
Publisher: Goose Lane Editions (Third edition March 1, 2007)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0864924933
ISBN-13: 978-0864924933

The Republic of Nothing is a novel set on a small Canadian island that declares its independence to the world and anarchy reigns. A god-like ocean deposits many a thing, yet it also takes away. The 1960s blaze off shore and draw the island's inhabitants into politics, the Vietnam War, and the peace movement. Sound impossible? Not on Whalebone Island, AKA the Republic of Nothing. Where else can a dead circus elephant, a long-dead Viking, the discovery of uranium, a raven-haired castaway who may be psychic, an anarchist turned politician, and refugees fleeing from the United States all be part of everyday life? Where else is eccentricity embraced with such open arms? In this new readers' guide edition, complete with an afterword by Neil Peart, Lesley Choyce's novel about resilience, independence, and anarchy comes alive, leading readers to discover once again that everything is nothing and nothing is everything.

More places to discuss Lesley's books online are available at and

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Third edition of The Republic of Nothing release

The Republic of Nothing
By Lesley Choyce
Reader’s Guide Edition, with an afterword by Rush’s Neil Peart

“ A triple-decker of a yarn . . . “
— The Globe and Mail

In The Republic of Nothing, prolific Canadian writer Lesley Choyce mines the deep vein of 1960s political and philosophical turmoil to create his best-loved work. A novel about rebellion, resilience, and independence, this Reader’s Guide edition, perfect for book clubs, also celebrates the 10th anniversary of the book’s original publication.

“My father declared the independence of Whalebone Island on March 21, 1951, the day I was born. It was a heady political time even on the Eastern Shore of Nova Scotia. New, pint-size nations were emerging all over forgotten corners of the globe and my old man decided that the flowering of independence should not pass us by.”

And so begins a quirky, quintessentially Choycian, work. In this idiosyncratic world anything can happen. A treasure trove of objects wash up on shore — including a circus elephant, a ship’s cargo of exotic furniture, and a mysterious raven-haired woman adrift in a lifeboat — and refugees from the outside world find a place where they can live in peace. At its heart, it is the story of one young man’s journey into adulthood while the anarchy of the adult world rages on around him.

This particular novel was a watershed in the author’s career. Choyce says it engendered a somewhat cult following. He even received letters from strangers who wanted to move to the island he had created.

“Kids in alternative rock bands wrote songs about it. Favourable reviewers wondered who I was and why I was ‘in hiding’. I knew I had tapped into something very important. Ultimately, it made me happy to be a writer who was so blessed to live at least part of my daily life IN the Republic of Nothing in all its shining exuberence.”

Neil Peart, drummer and lyricist for the rock band Rush, is one of many people deeply affected by this book. In his afterword, Peart reveals how he struck up a friendship with Choyce after reading the novel in the mid 1990s. He articulates why The Republic of Nothing remains one of his favourites to this day.

“Like all great fiction, it speaks for all time. And like all great dramatists, Lesley Choyce can build a stage on Whalebone Island, Nova Scotia, and bring the whole world to it.”

Discover why everyone from teenagers to rock stars adores this Canadian classic. Sail away to The Republic of Nothing, where ‘everything is nothing and nothing is everything.’

About The Author

Renaissance man Lesley Choyce has taught at Dalhousie University for the past 25 years. He runs Pottersfield Press and has published over sixty books for adults and kids. Lesley surfs year round in the North Atlantic and is considered the father of transcendental wood-splitting. He’s worked as a rehab counsellor, a freight hauler, a corn farmer, a janitor, a journalist, a lead guitarist, a newspaper boy, and a well-digger. He lives in a 200-year-old farmhouse at Lawrencetown Beach overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. He also hosts a nationally syndicated TV talk show on Vision TV called Off the Page with Lesley Choyce. His recent novel Cold Clear Morning is being developed as a feature-length movie. In 2002, Goose Lane Editions published Choyce’s best-selling circumferential history book, The Coasts of Canada. That same year, his animal epic film, The Skunk Whisperer, was broadcast across Canada and heralded at the Maine International Film Festival. Along with the Surf Poets, he has released two poetry/music albums, Long Lost Planet and Sea Level.

Accolades for Lesley Choyce and The Republic of Nothing

“ A national treasure.” — The Ottawa Citizen

“Reminiscent, both in wit and sensibility, of Stephen Leacock.” — Quill and Quire

“This book has to be the most unlikely success story!! If you go to school, you know that the books the teachers give you to read are generally either really old or really boring. I am surprised to say that this book is neither.

”The book is a very vivid depiction of what it is like to seek independence from your family, and even your country. This books about a family that live on a secluded island off Nova Scotia, they call this island "The Republic of Nothing." They don't want to be a nation of anyone elses, they want to be on their own with no government. This book starts off as a book about an Utopian island, and that it becomes about one family, mainly the main character, trying to find their way. It has family struggles, committment, romance, comedy, politics, etc etc. This is definitely a book for everyone from a dreamer to a succeeder.” — Kelly, on


Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Wave Warrior

Wave Warrior

By Lesley Choyce

"I climbed back onto my board. All I wanted was to get through the day without dying."

Ben is determined to learn to surf. In the rough North Atlantic waters near his home, only the tough can make it on the water. His first attempt is a disaster. Then he meets Ray, a surfing veteran from California. Ray promises to teach him to surf - and to face his inner demons. As Ben becomes more comfortable on his board he learns to face his fears and prove that he has what it takes to become a Wave Warrior.

Lesley Choyce is the author of two other Orca Soundings novels- Thunderbowl and Refuge Cove. Lesley lives and surfs at Lawrencetown Beach, Nova Scotia.

By author: Lesley Choyce
ISBN: 9781551436494
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date: March/01/2007

Forthcoming Young Adult Books

Two new young adult novels by Lesley Choyce will be released this spring:

Wave Warrior (expected release date: March 2007) and

The End of the World as We Know It.

Stay tuned.