The Argus Reads: Meet the Staff Edition

Compiled by Sam Mathers, News Editor

  1. Pillow Thoughts by Courtney Peppernell

“I never expected you to get under my skin, but now/your name runs through my veins and I can’t help but let every/part of you in.”

Words have a way of lingering in our minds, possessions, and environment. Pillow Thoughts is a collection of poems addressing the layers and raw emotion of love, passion, and heartache.  Emotions will catch you off guard one day. More often than not, the moments before you end your day will be your moments of reflection, your personal pillow thoughts – the purest moments that you face by yourself.


  • Tamara Spence, Editor-in-Chief

  1. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

“The sad thing was in the knowing that all their nerve would get them nowhere in the world and that they were lost as all people in Brooklyn seem lost when the day is nearly over and even though the sun is still bright, it is thin and doesn’t give you warmth when it shines on you.”

This book follows eleven-year-old Francie Nolan through her formative years, as she experiences the cruelty of a poor Brooklyn neighbourhood at the turn of the century. As Francie moves through life, she discovers who she is in relation to the people around her; even her heroes are flawed, and the people she doesn’t understand are more like her than she realized. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is a story of hardship that is unique to a particular time and place, yet is universal in its message of what it means to be human.

  • Sam Mathers, News Editor

  1. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

“The words. Why did they have to exist? Without them, there wouldn’t be any of this. Without words, the Führer was nothing.”

The Book Thief is a story of love, loss, hope, and tragedy. It follows the life of Liesel Meminger, a young girl who lives in a small town in Germany in 1939, just before the Second World War. Liesel has a complicated relationship with words, and spends much of her story discovering the hateful and merciful power of them. Liesel’s story draws on the emotional nature of the human condition, making this novel one that is not easy to put down.

  • Savanah Tillberg, Arts and Culture Editor

  1. Fields of Wheat, Hills of Blood by Anastasia Karaksidou

“National history’s nonlinear use of time enables it to ignore or label as anomalous those local memories that would otherwise challenge both the logic of its construction and, ultimately, its power.”

This is a book I read for Dr. Steve Jobbitt’s third year history course, The Balkans. Karakasidou’s book comprises her study of the town of Guezna/Assiros in Greek Macedonia. She weaves of a story which explores the complexity of people’s lives—a story which tears at the homogeneous seams of Greek nationalism. She skillfully reconstructs the history of the town, threading together economic, political, and social processes to create a powerful and well-researched narrative of the establishment of a local national identity. Fields of Wheat, Hills of Blood confronts not only Greek nationalism, but also the concept of imagined nationality itself, providing a rich and thought-provoking study, encapsulated in a book which will easily remain on my bookshelf for a while to come.

  • Geena Mortfield, Copy Editor

  1. The Black Swan by Nassim Taleb

“The inability to predict outliers implies the inability to predict the course of history.”

The Black Swan, written by Nassim Taleb is a masterfully written novel. This relatively tough read is sprinkled with some light humour. The content revolves around a theory created by the author, which has likely contributed to the popularity of the book. Black Swan theory is described as a major unforeseeable event, often inappropriately rationalized when analyzed in hindsight. The author uses short stories involving history, human psychology, and mathematics to explain his theory. The way in which Taleb mixes up these short stories tailors the book to a diverse audience with varying interests.

  • Thomas Veneruz, Business Manager

  1. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

“My dear, here we must run as fast as we can, just to stay in place. And if you wish to go anywhere you must run twice as fast as that.”

Alice in Wonderland is an absolute classic, and for good reason. To me, it’s the most perfect book to read during the break. If you (like me) grew up with a concerningly overactive imagination, reading Alice in Wonderland will be like rediscovering your childhood. Carroll has a way of writing that reflects my own train of thought as it was when I was  a child. I remember reading this book for the first time and not really being sure what to expect given its reputation, and I remember being completely dumbfounded when I realized why it felt so seamless and familiar to read. The jumpily nature and spewing of creativity might be a little overbearing for some, but for me it was like a trip down memory lane – and one that I can take over and over again at the drop of a hat.

  • Sabrina Nordlund, Social Media and Web Coordinator

  1. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson

“At one time or another every one of us has looked up at the night sky and wondered: What does it all mean? How does it all work? And, what is my place in the universe?”

This little book is the perfect introduction to the universe for those fascinated by what lies beyond our atmosphere. Neil deGrasse Tyson manages to explain the intricacies of dark matter, exoplanets, and the origin of the universe in layman’s terms, providing a quick and easy way to get a taste of the complexities of astrophysics without inundating oneself with technical jargon and intimidating theories. The perfect read to remind yourself how small we really are in the grand scheme of things, and how freeing that really is.

  • Katie Zugic, Media Assistant

  1. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

“Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing.”

This book is a CLASSIC! Most people have probably read it by the time they reach university. It’s the thrilling story of a rich man haunted by an eerie portrait that constantly reminds him of his own mortality and the effects that time will have on his handsome looks. Following Dorian Gray’s moral corruption throughout the course of his life, Wilde challenges his readers to think critically about the priority to which we, as Western societies, hold physical beauty over other qualities, such as respect, compassion, and kindness. Even though the story was originally released in 1890, it’s still pretty relevant today!

  • Sarah McPherson, Multimedia Editor

  1. Recovery: Freedom from Our Addictions by Russel Brand

“Here in our glistening citadel of limitless reflecting screens we live on the outside. Today we may awaken and instantly and unthinkingly reach for the phone, its glow reaching our eyes before the light of dawn, its bulletins dart into our minds before even a moment of acknowledgement of this unbending and unending fact: you are going to die.”

Recovery follows the AA 12 steps as they relate to Russell Brand’s perception. He explains how he accesses these steps daily for all sorts of addictions that play into filling a void within himself. Two weeks ago, I drank my last coffee, in the spirit of tackling my addictions head-on. Brand keeps me laughing, instead of crying, whenever I smell the sweet aroma of coffee waft by.

  • Jaina Kelly, Staff Writer

  1. The Eye of the World: Book One of The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan

“The Wheel of Time turns and the Ages come and pass. What was, will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow. Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time.” 

A gripping, fantastical adventure, Wheel of Time follows the story of Rand Al’Thor and his companions in the land of Andor as an ancient and powerful evil stirs in the lands to the north. Follow Rand in his quest to realize his destiny and uncover the truth about his identity. For Tolkien or Harry Potter fans, this is the series for you. Better yet, the series is long enough that you won’t burn through it in a week! I have always loved the fantasy genre as a means of escapism, and Jordan’s Wheel of Time series is a perfect outlet for that passion. Wheel of Time scratches that itch I’ve had since I finished Lord of the Rings – it is my personal favourite example of post-Tolkien fantasy done right.

  • Kaelen Pelaia, Staff Writer

  1. A Safe Girl to Love by Casey Plett

“Everyone calls our part of the world bleak. But it’s not bleak. I don’t think its bleak.”

A collection of eleven short stories that take place across North America, this book features the stories of various young trans women who overcome loss, sex, harassment and love. Each short story is extremely unique and is full of exciting new adventures which display how the life of a trans girl can be funny, sad, and completely unpredictable all at the same time. This book is completely authentic, full of diversity, and is nothing like anything I’ve ever read before. I would recommend this to anyone who loves a good story about regular human beings who are full of passion, humour and intelligence.

  • Brandy Bond, Staff Writer


Overheard at The Argus

Off-the-record lines we probably should have left off-the-record

Compiled by Geena Mortfield, Copy Editor

“The STREET isn’t for everybody, that’s why there’s THE SIDEWALK.”

“A THEME FOR EVERY ISSUE next semester? Like what… FEBRUARY THEME?”

“It’s not that I’m insensitive, I JUST DON’T KNOW.”

“That actually sounds REALLY BORING.”

“There has to be a THEME for the PLAYLIST TOO?”

“You CRY A LOT.”