Author: christine

#801 Welcome to Ormsby Street

Welcome to Ormsby Street by Richard Somerset Mackie * In September 2016, in his Welcome to the Ormsby Review, Richard Mackie provided his memories of Margaret Ormsby (1909-1996), the B.C. historian after whom The Ormsby Review is named. He referenced their conversations in two fine old living rooms in the Coldstream Valley, near Vernon, where…
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#550 From sawmills to EcoDensity

Vancouverism by Larry Beasley, with a prologue by Frances Bula $39.95 / 9780774890311 Vancouver: UBC Press, 2019 Reviewed by Michael Kluckner * Anyone looking for evidence of Vancouver’s essential weirdness could consider these two events: in 2005, a mayor named Sam Sullivan personally trademarked the term “EcoDensity” for a style of highrise development; and, five years later,…
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#549 Peak satisfaction

The Glorious Mountains of Vancouver’s North Shore: A Peakbagger’s Guide by David Crerar, Harry Crerar, and Bill Maurer Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2018 $40.00 / 9781771602419 Reviewed by Glenn Woodsworth * From various points in Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, it is possible to look north to mountains that have had just a handful of…
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#548 On a wing & a telepathic prayer

The Story of Radio Mind: A Missionary’s Journey on Indigenous Land by Pamela Klassen London and Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2018 $27.50 (U.S.) / 9780226552736 Reviewed by Susan Neylan * Colonialism has spiritual dimensions; the process of creating a country like Canada transcends physical space and expands into metaphysical realms to permeate the…
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#547 Big book, great language

SENĆOŦEN; A Dictionary of the Saanich Language by Timothy Montler Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2018 $150.00 (U.S.) / 9780295743851 Reviewed by Andrew Cienski * SENĆOŦEN; A Dictionary of the Saanich Language, by Timothy Montler, is the latest in a succession of Coast Salish language reference materials. It is the culmination of Montler’s and others’…
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#546 Flashes of fascinating humanity

Hider/Seeker: Stories by Jen Currin Vancouver: Anvil Press, 2018 $20.00 / 9781772141177 Reviewed by Candace Fertile * The twenty stories in Vancouver poet Jen Currin’s debut collection of fiction explore the lives of LGBTQ+ characters, in particular their relationships as they fall apart. Loneliness is occasionally assuaged by sex, which is mistaken for love, but…
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#545 Microbes good and bad

The Whole-Body Microbiome: How to Harness Microbes — Inside and Out — for Lifelong Health by B. Brett Finlay and Jessica M. Finlay Madeira Park: Douglas & McIntyre 2019 $26.95 / 9781771622202 Reviewed by Sandi Ratch * Most of us go through our daily lives not realizing that we have an army of microbe helpers…
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#544 Greg Younging (1961-2019)

First published May 5, 2019 Greg Younging (1961-2019) An obituary by Alan Twigg * Formerly an Assistant Director of Research for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, Dr. Gregory George Younging, a publisher of Theytus Books and a professor of Indigenous Studies at the UBC Okanagan campus, died at the Penticton Hospital on May…
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#543 In unity is not strength

Lost Boy by Shelley Hrdlitschka Victora: Orca Book Publishers, 2018 $14.95 /  9781459816374 Reviewed by Carol Anne Shaw * Having enjoyed Shelley Hrdlitschka’s Sister Wife (Orca Books, 2008) — a young adult novel about a fictitious polygynous community in Canada — I was excited to read Lost Boy, the story of a young boy’s escape…
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#542 Classical, biblical, theoretical

Passageways by Philip Resnick Vancouver: Ronsdale Press, 2018 $18.95 / 9781553805236 Reviewed by Andrew Parkin * This book is a selection of poems reaching back more than four decades. Unsurprisingly, we experience an array of subjects and themes expressed mainly in free verse but with very occasional rhymes. The subjects derive from Resnick’s reading and…
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#541 Co-opting the food chain

First published April 30, 2019. The Co-op Revolution: Vancouver’s Search For Food Alternatives by Jan DeGrass, with a foreword by Rick Scott Halfmoon Bay: Caitlin Press, 2019 $24.95 / 9781987915952   Grocery Story: The Promise of Food Co-ops in the Age of Grocery Giants by Jon Steinman Gabriola: New Society Publishers, 2019 $19.99 / 9780865719071…
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#540 Wayson Choy (1939-2019)

First published April 29, 2019 Wayson Choy (1939-2019) An obituary by Alan Twigg * At age 80, Wayson Choy died at home on April 28, 2019. Wayson Choy was born on April 20, 1939 in Vancouver as the only son of two working parents. His mother was a meat-cutter and sausage stuffer; he was told…
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#539 Mickleburgh’s take on BC unions

The notion that workers should collectivize to support one another and prevent exploitation is increasingly viewed as arcane in the Age of Tweets. The Winnipeg General Strike happened 100 years—and few Canadians can tell you what it was, and what happened. Society barely bats an eye as unionization of the workplace declines, and more and…
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#537 From Tim Hortons to Swan Lake

Homeless Memorial: Poems from the Streets of Vernon by John La Greca Victoria: Ekstasis Editions, 2018 $23.95 / 9781771712750 Reviewed by Phyllis Reeve First published April 26, 2019 * John La Greca would have been still in high school but already troubled and sensing his outsider status, at the time I spent a summer in…
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