Super Secret Festival of Lit: Hockey

It’s time to start revealing our Super Secret Festival of Lit mystery titles! We’re starting off with a book about our national past time that is written by a man who’s been part of the sport in one way or another for over five decades. Plus we suggest four more hockey titles for any super fans. Buy any one of these titles from now until December 18th and receive a free set of four CanLit holiday cards.Drum roll please…


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Golden Oldies: Stories of Hockey’s Heroes by Brian McFarlane (ECW Press)

What It’s About

Just as the title suggests, Golden Oldies is a great selection of stories about twenty-two of hockey’s greatest players. There are some sad stories as well as lighter stories but one thing that shines throughout the whole collection is a love for the game. Accompanying each story are archival photos, including notes from the author about each one. Learn more.

Why We Chose It

Brian McFarlane is one of Canada’s foremost hockey historians; he’s been a player, a writer, and a broadcaster for over fifty years, including thirty years on Hockey Night in Canada. He’s written over 80 books on hockey and is a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame. The man knows hockey.

Who Would Love This Book

This book is perfect for hockey fans and collectors. Packed full of stories of hockey’s greats, from the trail of Patsy Guzzo and his RCAF mates in 1948 to the career-ending injuries to the Leafs’ Ace Bailey to the shameful treatment of the Canucks’ Mike Robitaille, it’s a must-have for the puck-loving dad or granddad in your life!

Reviews & Media

“Fans who want to deepen their knowledge of hockey need to read Golden Oldies. There is nary a dull moment, and even well-read hockey fans will learn something. Most will learn a lot.” — Puck Junk“From one of the most respected hockey journalists comes this collection of lively stories about some of the sport’s most entertaining characters . . . McFarlane has such great fun telling about these and other hockey greats that we get caught up in his enthusiasm. A real treat for hockey fans.” — Booklist“McFarlane, hockey’s most revered historian and a former Hockey Night in Canada host, has selected 22 personalities that run the gamut . . . The common thread connecting them all is that they have fascinating stories to tell . . . There’s no shortage of the strange or the surprising throughout the 238-page book.” — The Hockey News* * *

More hockey books for the fan in your life:


The Last Hockey Game by Bruce McDougall (Goose Lane Editions)

On May 2, 1967, Montreal and Toronto faced each other in a battle for hockey supremacy. Learn More.

Why We Chose It

A 2015 Toronto Book Award nominee, McDougall’s The Last Hockey Game takes fans back to the “Original Six” era of hockey when the Leafs took home the cup.

Who Would Love This Book

A book of nostalgia for those who remember that fateful night and an essential piece of hockey history for younger hockey fans. 

I Hate Hockey by Francois Barcelo, translated by Peter McCambridge (Baraka Books)

Hockey is a pretext for unlikely adventure in this sardonic roman noir that at times flirts with the outrageous. Learn more.

Why We Chose It

 It’s a thriller, it’s funny, and it’s macabre. What more does a reader need?

Who Would Love This Book

For the hockey fan who likes to read fiction, this is a fun adventure story that will help pass the time between seasons.

Playing the White Man’s Games by Don Marks (J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing)

Playing the White Man’s Games expands on Don Marks enormous success with his first book, They Call Me Chief: Warriors on Ice (2008). Learn more.

Why We Chose It

This book showcases brilliant athletic talent as well as great efforts to preserve and enhance native history, culture, and lifestyle with pride and dignity off the field.

Who Would Love This Book

This book covers not just hockey but also football, golf, and Olympic sports—it’s for the dedicated and well-rounded sports fan.

Squarehead by Brian Davis (Insomniac Press)

Set against the backdrop of Bruins-Canadiens 2008 game 7 matchup, we meet Corey Bonspiel on a really bad day: there’s a mysterious lump on his neck, his girlfriend broke up with him, he left his dead-end job, and worst of all he can’t find a TV to watch the Habs’ game. Learn more.

Why We Chose It

A hilarious novel that provides insight into the mind of a hockey fan.

Who Would Love This Book

Squarehead is perfect for the die-hard hockey fan, who may not have the rest of his life together but he knows for sure which team he’s rooting for.* * *We’ll be revealing each of our eight mystery titles over the course of the next several days. Get caught up on our Super Secret Festival of Lit here. Buy any one of these titles from now until December 18th and receive a free set of four CanLit holiday cards.