Alberta Politics
University of British Columbia forestry research scientist Suzanne Simard, author of Finding the Mother Tree (Photo: Jdoswim, Creative Commons).

Finding the Mother Tree by Suzanne Simard tops independent booksellers’ non-fiction bestseller list for week ended Jan. 9

Posted on January 15, 2022, 12:35 am
3 mins

Here are the lists of the top 10 fiction and non-fiction titles sold by independent booksellers in Alberta during the week ended Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022.

The lists are compiled by the Book Publishers Association of Alberta, and include sales at Audreys Books and Glass Bookshop in Edmonton.

I was mildly disappointed not to see Nora Loreto’s Spin Doctors, How Media and Politicians Misdiagnosed the COVID-19 Pandemic on this list this week, since I’d noticed earlier today to it was on a national list of independent bookshops’ bestselling non-fiction books. I know Ms. Loreto through the Canadian Association of Labour Media and regard her journalism very highly. It is to be hoped the readers of Alberta will now rise to the challenge and propel her work, which describes how politicians and uncritical media shaped the popular understanding of COVID-19 and helped to justify the maintenance of a status quo that created the worst ravages of the crisis, to be more widely read in Alberta.

One of the luxuries of publishing a blog is being able to make my own recommendations if I darned well feel like it. This is one of them. Spin Doctors is published by Fernwood Publishing.


1. Five Little Indians – Michelle Good (Harper Perennial)
2. The Thursday Murder Club – Richard Osman (Viking)
3. The Maid – Nita Prose (Viking)
4. The Midnight Library – Matt Haig (HarperCollins)
5. It Ends With Us – Colleen Hoover (Atria Books)
6. The Song of Achilles – Madeline Miller (Ecco)
7. Dune – Frank Herbert (Ace Books)
8. Still Life – Sarah Winman (Viking)
9. Where the Crawdads Sing – Delia Owens (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)
10. The Lincoln Highway – Amor Towles (Viking)


1. Finding the Mother Tree – Suzanne Simard (Knopf)
2. Atlas of the Heart – Brené Brown (Random House)
3. All We Can Save – ed. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Katharine K. Wilkinson (One World)
4. Destination Art – Amy Dempsey (Thames And Hudson)
5. Swamplands – Edward Struzik (Island Press) *
6. Braiding Sweetgrass – Robin Wall Kimmerer (Milkweed Editions)
7. The Dawn of Everything – David Graeber and David Wengrow (McClelland & Stewart)
8. Our Grandmothers’ Lives – ed. Freda Ahenakew and H. C. Wolfart (University of Regina Press)
9. People Change – Vivek Shraya (Penguin Canada) *
10. Talking to Canadians – Rick Mercer (Doubleday Canada)

* Alberta Author   + Alberta Publisher

The independent bookstores contributing to this weekly list are:

Audreys Books, Edmonton
Cafe Books, Canmore
Drawn to Books, Edmonton
Glass Bookshop, Edmonton
Monkeyshines Books, Calgary
Owl’s Nest Books, Calgary
Pages on Kensington, Calgary
Shelf Life Books, Calgary
The Next Page, Calgary
Three Hills Books, Three Hills

One Comment to: Finding the Mother Tree by Suzanne Simard tops independent booksellers’ non-fiction bestseller list for week ended Jan. 9

  1. John

    January 15th, 2022

    After reading Finding the Mother Tree you will see trees and forests in a radical new way. The author , a UBC Forestry professor, says trees communicate with each other. For example, if one is under attack by insects it warns the surrounding trees, who then produce chemicals to ward off the attackers. Trees also send nutrients to trees that are not well. Mother Trees–those that have sprinkled surround the area with their offspring–actually know which trees are their offspring, and if necessary will favour them with nutrients over unrelated trees.

    The food and communication are made possible by sending signals through a vast web of underground fungi that link the roots of all trees. (Nature Magazine calls it the Wood Wide Web). Tragically this network is destroyed when forestry companies clear cut huge swaths of forests—not only to the detriment of the trees, but also our eco-system.

    This book is receiving attention outside the country. The host of the New York Times Book Review podcast interviewed Simard last summer.

    As for Loreto’s book–never fear, David. it will probably rise on the charts before long. Perhaps you could talk about it in a post.


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