Contemporary Canadian Literature with a Distinctly Urban Twist

Anvil Press



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  • us orders US $18
  • world (outside Canada/US) orders US $18

Finalist for the Trillium Book Award

The stories in Animal depict people on the brink of major life change. Often at a crossroads they are oblivious to, Leggat’s characters seem to be captured in a cinematic slo-mo, teetering on the edge of something unknown, heroically resisting the ever-present pull of Fate. It matters little whether the characters take action or refuse to act; life acts for them. The reader is left to wonder: When does “meaning” cease to have meaning? Like travelling a mountain highway at night, what’s just around the next bend is never known. The stories in Animal never fail to deliver potent surprises.


“I’m tempted to say it’s a slim, distilled masterpiece.”
– Michael Bryson, Underground Book Club

“these quickly unfolding stories are elliptically drawn, tense with action and dark humour. Leggat is a shape-shifting writer”
– Ibi Kaslik, The Globe and Mail

“this immensely rewarding collection is worth picking up”
eye weekly

“Most short story collections are up and down. Unlike most, however, Animal is more than the sum of its parts.”

Animal is a great book that can be read over and over, offering up something new each time.”
Star Phoenix

“broad literary range … Her writing just gets stronger, more confident, variable and — above all — human.”

“Leggat’s spare prose further adds to the impression of absolute economy. Rather than taking away from the collection’s impact, however, Leggat’s care and concision results in some expertly calibrated stories, leaving the reader both satisfied and wanting more.”
Winnipeg Free Press

  • Publication: Spring 2009
  • ISBN: 9781897535011
  • Pages: 160 pp
  • Size: 5.5 x 8 inches

Alexandra Leggat is the author of the short story collections Animal (shortlisted for the Trillium Award), Meet Me in the Parking Lot, and Pull Gently, Tear Here (nominated for the Danuta Gleed First Fiction Award). She is also the author of the poetry collection This is me since yesterday. Leggat’s debut novel, The Incomparables was published in 2014. Her poetry, fiction, and essays have been published in journals across the U.S., Canada and the U.K. She teaches creative writing at the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies.

Books by Alexandra Leggat