All posts by Eva Wissting

Time to read something that’s not on your syllabus

It’s summer and there’s finally time to read something that’s not on your syllabus. But what to pick when you both want to unwind and catch up on the titles you’ve missed in the last year?

Whether you’re looking for quick reads or something longer, whether you’re longing for advice or mythology or horror, The Squirrel has you covered!

1. A Thousand Beginnings and Endingsedited by Ellen Oh and Elsie Chapman

In this new take on East and South Asian mythology and folklore, 16 bestselling writers have their short stories span across fantasy, sci-fi, romance and more. Along with each contemporary version of a myth, you also get a summary of the original.

Available at Toronto Public Library.

2. Creative Questby Questlove

Drummer, DJ and creative all-rounder Questlove’s inspirational Creative Quest was called the most anticipated book by many last year. Drawing from both his own experience and what he’s learned from others around him, and blending this with philosophies of creativity, Questlove guides us how to best lead a creative life.

Available at John M. Kelly Library, Hart House Library and Toronto Public Library.

3. The Princess Saves Herself in This Oneby Amanda Lovelace

This is poetry that makes sense even if you’re not used to reading poems. In all its simplicity, the book shows in beautiful and painful words the process of resilience.

Available at UTS Library Information Centre, Hart House Library and Toronto Public Library.

4. The Marrow Thieves, by Cherie Dimaline

Looking for a novel-length dystopia to sink into on your day off? In Cherie Dimaline’s near future, Indigenous people are hunted for their bone marrow because it will help humanity recover the ability to dream. Frenchie and a group of others travel north and try to stay hidden — but the enemy may be closer than they realize.

Available at U of T Libraries, Hart House Library and Toronto Public Library.

5. When I Arrived at the Castle, by Emily Carroll

Emily Carroll’s gothic horror graphic novel starts off with an eerie Edgar Allan Poe-feeling, but then goes somewhere completely different. The fairy-tale-like story weaves several threads together to raise questions about what evil is and who is whom. This is a quick read that stays with you.

Available at New College Library and Toronto Public Library.

The best five places to go swimming near you (outside of U of T)

Temperatures have finally gone up. Instead of suffering from Toronto’s cold climate, we’re all suffering from the heat! Thus, time for a dip. But where’s the best place to go? That all depends on your preferences. 

  1. The Easy Pick: Alex Duff Memorial Pool

This outdoor pool in Christie Pits Park has a little bit for everyone, including a spring board and deep pool for diving, a water slide as well as a separate 25-metre lap pool. Good to know: this is one of the city’s pools that’s usually open late during heat waves.

Get there: TTC to Christie Station

How much: Like all City of Toronto outdoor pools, it’s free

  1. The Olympic: Donald D. Summerville Pools

If you’re not about playing around but want to get right down to it, this pool complex right on the beach at Woodbine Park is for you. There’s a 50-metre Olympic size pool, a 25-metre training pool, and even a separate pool for diving with both 5- and 10-metre diving platforms.

Get there: Bus 92 to 1816 Lake Shore Boulevard East

How much: Like all City of Toronto outdoor pools, it’s free

  1. The Adventure: The Elora Quarry

For those of you who want to get out of the city, the Elora Quarry is just an hour’s drive from downtown Toronto. This place used to be a limestone quarry, but it is now a park that offers amazing scenery. There’s a beach on the south side of the quarry that’s otherwise surrounded by cliffs.

Get there: An hour’s drive from downtown Toronto

How much: Park entry is 10 dollars

  1. The Splurge: Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel

Just want to have a good, luxurious time while pretending to be a visitor in this city? The financial district is where you find this indoor/outdoor swimming pool. It’s best to check ahead, as guest passes sometimes sell out, especially on hot summer days.

 Get there: Streetcar 301, 501 or 502 to York Street & Queen Street West

How much: 30 happy dollars

  1. The Beach: Ward’s Island

Do you long to get out of the city but want to skip the drive? Toronto Islands is the place to go. On the eastern-most tip is an area called Ward’s Island with a nice and relaxed atmosphere. The beach, located on the southern part of Ward’s Island, is sandy with some rocks as you enter the water and the water quality is generally good here. 

Get there: Take the ferry from the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal between Bay & Yonge on Queens Quay. You can either go straight to Ward’s Island, or to Centre Island and then walk or rent a bike.

How much: Like the air, the water here is free to enjoy