Announcing One Book One SFU: Jonny Appleseed

Jonny Appleseed: Joshua Whitehead in conversation with Vivek Shraya, March 30, 2021 at 7 pm pst
Simon Fraser University Library is pleased to announce this year's pick for One Book One SFU: Joshua Whitehead’s Jonny Appleseed.

About the book

“Jonny Appleseed weaponizes story to bring the rez (and urban rez) to life, shrouding its characters in luminous layers so they're neither good nor bad but immersed in worlds and words. Unflinching and intimate, Joshua Whitehead takes his readers on a journey to the heart of an NDN glitter princess with generous, swooning prose. Unforgettable.” -- Eden Robinson

“With only seven days until he returns home for his stepfather's funeral, Appleseed spends a pyretic week attempting to reconcile the competing factions of his life: sex, friends, work, sex, family, identity, sex. Throughout, memories of his kokum (grandmother) intrude upon the chaos, and these unexpected moments of remembrance prove most striking. A radically original new voice.” -- Booklist

“Every so often, a book comes along that feels like a milestone, with revolution nestled beneath every sentence, every word. Oji-Cree/nehiyaw two-spirit/Indigiqueer writer Joshua Whitehead's Jonny Appleseed is one of those books.” -- The Globe and Mail

Borrow the book: Jonny Appleseed is available as an ebook through SFU Library, with unlimited user access.

Get the book in the mail: We were pleased to be able to mail a limited number of copies of Jonny Appleseed for free to currently-enrolled SFU and FIC students within Canada. Requests are now closed and all books have been sent out.

The book may also be available through your local public library, or from local booksellers such as Pulpfiction Books and Iron Dog Books.

About the speakers

Joshua Whitehead

Joshua Whitehead (he/him) is a Two-Spirit, Oji-nêhiyaw member of Peguis First Nation (Treaty 1). He is currently a Ph.D. candidate, lecturer, and Killam scholar at the University of Calgary where he studies Indigenous literatures and cultures with a focus on gender and sexuality. His dissertation, tentatively titled "Feral Fatalisms," is a hybrid narrative of theory, essay, and non-fiction that interrogates the role of "ferality" inherent within Indigenous ways of being (with a strong focus on nêhiyawewin). He is the author of full-metal indigiqueer (Talonbooks 2017) which was shortlisted for the inaugural Indigenous Voices Award and the Stephan G. Stephansson Award for Poetry. He is also the author of Jonny Appleseed (Arsenal Pulp Press 2018) which was long listed for the Giller Prize, shortlisted for the Indigenous Voices Award, the Governor General's Literary Award, the Amazon Canada First Novel Award, the Carol Shields Winnipeg Book Award, and won the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Fiction and the Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction. Whitehead is currently working on a third manuscript titled, Making Love with the Land to be published with Knopf Canada, which explores the intersections of Indigeneity, queerness, and, most prominently, mental health through a nêhiyaw lens. Currently, Whitehead is premiering his newly edited anthology, Love after the End: an Anthology of Two-Spirit and Indigiqueer Speculative Fiction. You can find his work published widely in such venues as Prairie Fire, CV2, EVENT, Arc Poetry Magazine, The Fiddlehead, Grain, CNQ, Write, and Red Rising Magazine.

Vivek Shraya

Vivek Shraya’s best-selling book, I’m Afraid of Men, was her­ald­ed by Vanity Fair as “cultural rocket fuel,” and her album with Queer Songbook Orchestra, Part‑Time Woman, was included in CBC’s list of Best Canadian Albums of 2017. Her newest book, The Subtweet: A Novel, was published in 2020.

She is one half of the music duo Too Attached and the founder of the publishing imprint VS. Books. A Polaris Music Prize nominee and four-time Lambda Literary Award finalist, Vivek was a 2016 Pride Toronto Grand Marshal, was featured on The Globe and Mail’s Best Dressed list, and has received honours from The Writers’ Trust of Canada and The Publishing Triangle.

She is currently a director on the board of the Tegan and Sara Foundation and an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Calgary.

Joshua Whitehead & Vivek Shraya
March 30
Online via Zoom
Registration information

A password to access this event will be sent to all registrants via email in the days and hours preceding the event.

To register for this event, visit: SFU Library's One Book One SFU 2021 -- Joshua Whitehead & Vivek Shraya (Eventbrite) 

Registration options

  • Use of Eventbrite is voluntary. Eventbrite data is stored on U.S. servers.
  • If you prefer not to use Eventbrite to register for this event for privacy reasons, please email Chloe Riley at
    SFU's Vancity Office of Community Engagement, SFU Public Square, Pulpfiction Books.
    Contact for further information
    Please contact Chloe Riley at

    Accessibility Information

    Live closed captioning and ASL (American Sign Language) interpretation will be available at this event.

    If you have any requests, concerns, or questions regarding accessibility at this event, please contact Chloe Riley by email:

    Technology requirements

    This event will be presented using Zoom. To engage fully you will need:

    • A laptop, computer, or smartphone
    • A stable internet connection
    • Speakers or headphones

    Protecting your privacy

    To ensure that we are using online meeting technology in a privacy-conscious way, we are following best practices for this online event:

    • We will only circulate the meeting link to those who are registered for the event
    • We will password protect the meeting
    • We will enable end-to-end encryption
    • We will not use attention tracking

    To protect your own privacy we suggest that:

    • We suggest you do not use your Facebook profile to log into the event. This is so that the webinar platform can’t cross-reference you with your Facebook account.
    • We remind you that whatever you say or enter into chat in the virtual event is public and recorded, so please do not share sensitive information about yourself or others, and do not say anything you do not wish to enter the public space.

    To protect the privacy of others we ask that:

    • You do not record or photograph yourself, other participants, or the hosts during the event, unless permission is requested and given.

    Code of conduct

    • By participating in this event, you are committing to co-create an environment that actively respects the rights, value, and dignity of all people. Above all, there will be zero tolerance for those who promote violence against others on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, religious affiliation, or different ability. Anyone who incites harm towards other participants (be it through the chat, video or audio functions) will be removed at the discretion of our technical team and moderator.

    • Within the bounds of this conduct policy, respect the opinions of others. Every participant brings information, points of view and ideas to contribute.

    • Don’t assume pronouns/gender/knowledge based on someone’s name or video image. We can refer to people using the usernames and pronouns they provide!

    • Submit questions using the Q&A feature at any time during the event.

    • Leaving comments in the chat is welcome throughout the event, provided the content follows these guidelines.

    • Step up, step back: if you’ve asked a question or shared a comment, ensure that new voices are heard before you contribute again.

    • Practice self-care: if you need to get up or take a break, please feel free.


    This event will be recorded and shared after the event date on SFU Library's YouTube channel.