The Biscuit

Episode 215: Kirstie McLellan Day

June 02, 2021 William Bartrum Episode 215
The Biscuit
Episode 215: Kirstie McLellan Day
Show Notes


With six national bestsellers (three instant #1 bestsellers in a row) under her belt, including Wayne Gretzky’s #1 bestselling non-fiction book in Canada for 2016, Kirstie McLellan Day is considered the world’s top hockey author.

Harper Collins Canada Chief Editor Jim Gifford credits her with creating a new genre of sports book. Maclean's Magazine has dubbed her Canada's “Ice Queen”, while the Globe and Mail calls her “Hockey’s Leading Muse”.

Kirstie spent the winter of 2016 working with Wayne Gretzky on his bestseller, 99: Stories of the Game. Sports Illustrated review the book said, "I have held (Ken Dryden’s) The Game as the best hockey book ever written… I can say that more about this one. (Gretzky) has every record there is, (and now) might as well notch his name down for best hockey book.” 

One of her best-known books, Theo Fleury’s Playing With Fire, was on the national bestsellers list for more than 52 weeks. That led to a feature length documentary for HBO and a one-man play Kirstie wrote. The play has won numerous awards and continues to tour across the county. First staged at Alberta Theatre Projects in 2012, it was named best theatrical production of the year. 

Kirstie’s other hockey books include Cornered with Hockey Night in Canada host Ron MacLean, as well as his second book Hockey Towns, a cross-country collection of emotionally powerful and personal stories from Canada’s favourite sport. Kirstie worked with the late Bob Probert on Tough Guy, which became a Reader’s Digest Book of Choice. And in 2017 she worked with former L.A. Kings goalie, and Hockey Night in Canada broadcaster, Kelly Hrudey on his top seller, Calling the Shots. Her latest book Cujo: The Untold Story of My Life On and Off the Ice, with goaltender great Curtis Joseph is due out October 23, 2018.

Kirstie was born and raised in Regina, Saskatchewan and studied drama at the University of Regina. She relocated to Alberta and has since worked as a private detective, investigative journalist, columnist, television host, producer and CEO of Pyramid Productions Television. She got her start as an entertainment reporter and writing biographies for A&E Biography Channel in New York. 

BookNet Canada recently released a list of the 150 bestselling Canadian books since 2007. Author Robert Munsch tops the chart with a remarkable 35 titles. McLellan Day is second on the list with five bestsellers (including the top-rated hockey book) while Margaret Atwood has four books on the list, and Alice Munro and Chris Hadfield are some of the writers with three.


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