Happy Book Birthday to NOTHING THE SAME, EVERYTHING HAUNTED: The Ballad of Motl the Cowboy, by Gary Barwin.  A wild and witty, yet heartrending exploration of genocide, persecution, colonialism and masculinity – saturated in Gary Barwin’s perfect pun-play – this is a one-of-a-kind novel of sheer genius. 

“A fierce and funny horse ride through hell, told with brio.” – Yann Martel, Man Booker Prize winner for Life of Pi

“A hilarious, deep-hearted and life-affirming adventure, equal parts Sound of MusicBlazing Saddles and matzo ball soup. This is Barwin’s tallest tale yet, a crackers modern Western that meditates (as it moseys) on compassion, kinship and atrocity.” – Sean Michaels, Scotiabank Giller Prize winner for Us Conductors

“This is the most wildly inventive novel I have read in decades, and Gary Barwin is the enormously talented wordsmith who has pulled it off! It begins in the nightmare of the Holocaust in Nazi-occupied Lithuania and travels across Europe and North America examining the plight both of Jews and Indigenous peoples. And through it all we find jokes based on cowboy themes. Jokes! What are jokes doing among these calamities? Displacing the horror, easing the way, making the tragedies, if not bearable, at least something one can talk about without incessant weeping in a world haunted by the past.” – Antanas Sileika, author of The Barefoot Bingo Caller

This inventive, madcap novel is a stunning testament to Jewish humor and survival. – Publisher’s Weekly

“Barwin is a talented and prolific artist comfortable moving between vocations – poet, children’s book author, composer, and multimedia artist – and this novel showcases his signature style and strengths: acrobatic language bursting with puns, rhyme, alliteration and all manner of wordplay, madcap escapades, and a sprinkle of slapstick.

This wildly inventive novel plays by its own rules. In Barwin’s world, imagination is freedom, and comedy, courage.” – Quill and Quire

Gary Barwin is a writer, composer, and multimedia artist, and the author of more than 20 books of poetry, fiction and books for children. His debut adult novel, Yiddish for Pirates, won the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour as well as the Canadian Jewish Literary Award and the Hamilton Literary Award.  It was a finalist for both the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Governor General’s Literary Award for Fiction.  Born in Northern Ireland to South African parents of Ashkenazi descent, Barwin moved to Canada as a child. He is married with three adult children, and lives in Hamilton, Ontario. Gary is represented by Shaun Bradley.