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Canadian Literature

Featuring Okanagan College Library's resources on Canadian Literature

Book Reviews vs. Criticism

“Book reviews are usually written shortly after a book is published and discuss it as a whole, from the perspective of whether it is worth reading or acquiring. They appear in magazines, newspapers, and scholarly journals for the specific purpose of keeping their readers up-to-date on books likely to be of interest to them. Similarly, … film reviews follow openings and help audiences decide what to attend. Criticism, unlike reviews, is usually written some period of time after the work is made public…. Critical books or articles often focus on specific aspects or themes in a book [or] film ….” 


(Baker, Nancy L. and Nancy Huling. A Research Guide for Undergraduate Students: English and American Literature. New York: Modern Language Association of America, 2006, p. 45)

Canadian-Focused Article Databases

For articles or reviews about recently published Canadian literary works try:  

Quill & Quire

Quill & Quire is "Canada's magazine of book news and reviews"

OCtopus (Library Search Engine)


Search OCtopus: Find Books, Articles, & More!


OCtopus searches the Library's catalogue and most of the Library's databases in one search.

Enter keywords in the OCtopus search box on the Library's website

You may Refine your search results √ Peer Reviewed & Scholarly 

or  limit your search results by Resource types √ Academic Journal

Too many results? Try Limit by Database, MLA International Bibliography

or try  Refine your search by Subject

For more results, remove the limiter √ Available in OC Collection

Articles which are not available in full-text  and are not in print in the OC Library collection may be requested by clicking on the link Where can I get this article?

Note: OCtopus searches several but not all of the Library's databases; some additional databases e.g. CBCA can be selected under the "Expand Your Search" section to the right of the search results list

Key Resource for Literary Research: Artemis Literary Sources

Gale Literary Sources is a platform that provides simultaneous searching of the Literature Resource Center and Literature Criticism Online databases, and selected content from Gale Virtual Reference Library related to literature e.g. Schirmer Encyclopedia of Film

Searching OCtopus or Individual Databases

Tip: Enclose phrases in quotation marks, truncate with asterisk


Examples of keywords:


"canadian literature" decoloniz*

"canadian literature" canon*

"canadian literature" "canadian identity"

"canadian literature" national*

"canadian literature" regional*

"canadian literature" "magic realism"

"canadian literature" global*

Have a relevant article? Look at the subject terms for the article and the works cited or references for additional sources

Key Resource for Literary Research: MLA International Bibliography


MLA International Bibliography is a comprehensive database for finding scholarly journal articles in the field of language and literature as well as finding book articles/chapters, or critical essays, in edited books. Articles which are not available in full-text may be requested.

Limit your result:    Exclude dissertations √    Language English

Canadian Literature Journals


Canadian Literature (1959-current)


Studies in Canadian Literature (1976-current)


Essays on Canadian Writing (1977-2009) 


  Volume No. 52 Spring/Summer 2003

Canadian Poetry (1977-2012 full-text via Canadian Poetry website, 1989-current in Kelowna Library Periodicals Collection/Storage)


Forces to Bear: The Reculturalization of Canadian Poetry cover

Contemporary Verse 2 (1975-current in Vernon Library Periodicals Collection)

Canadian Literary Magazines

Literary magazines showcase writing of emerging and established authors, and may also have author interviews, book reviews and commentary or discussion about literature.

An example:

Brick (Kelowna + Vernon Periodicals, older issues in Storage)

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