"Reliable artistry vaults abruptly to flashing brilliance with King Me. Christie’s riveting creation of a contemporary Bedlam breathes an authenticity raising echoes of Kesey’s Cuckoo’s Nest... Then comes another flash, a small, polished gem of narrative flame: The Quiet... The book’s title story rounds off the collection...Christie’s prose here is like clear water, transparent yet dense with understanding, never swanning on lyricism when lucidity will do."
-Jim Bartley, The Globe and Mail
"The Beggar’s Garden takes the pulse of history by unsentimentally dramatizing the way a certain segment of society lives now, and in so doing stands as a sympathetic and compassionate examination of modern urban loneliness and disaffection."
"I knew Mike Christie as a damned fine skateboarder and now I know Michael Christie as a damned fine author."
"...[F]illed with keenly observed detail and lively characterization...Every person in this book, no matter what their age, gender or peculiarity, is convincing and vivid. Their thoughts, perceptions and interactions are drawn in language so precise that they stand out in full colour in all their wisdom and foolishness, tragedy and absurdity. The more you read this, the better it gets."
-Winnipeg Free Press
"Michael Christie’s debut collection of nine linked stories is dazzling...straightforward, disarming prose."
-Quill & Quire (starred review)
"[A] skillfully composed collection...solemn authenticity...assured prose..."
"Michael Christie’s debut collection of short stories, The Beggar’s Garden, is about as good as a first book can be. Set in his native Vancouver and peopled with the down-and-out, the disenfranchised and disaffected, these stories are by turns funny, melancholy, bizarre and very, very real. Christie has a real gift for portraying his characters from the inside and making them completely convincing."
"[A]ll of the stories are touching, tender and raw, but at the same time, they are clever and humorous."
"Author Michael Christie worked in a homeless shelter in the Downtown Eastside with people with severe mental problems, some of society's most vulnerable people. Christie's stories are funny, warm and striking in their portrayal of these men and women."
B.C. - based Michael Christie made heads turn with his darkly comic debut The Beggar's Garden. Christie introduces readers to a memorable cast of characters and to a confident new CanLit voice. After seeing him breathe literary life into Vancouver's downtown east side, we're ready to follow Christie anywhere.
- CBC Books