Biography

#663 Canadians in Bomber Command

Four Who Dared: Inspiring Stories of Canadian Airmen in the Second World War by Kenneth B. Cothliff Victoria: Heritage House, 2019 $22.95 / 9781772032949 Reviewed by Sylvia Crooks * We are losing our Canadian veterans of the Second World War so quickly, now that they are in their nineties and beyond. How grateful we must…
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#657 Government House calling

The Lieutenant Governors of British Columbia by Jenny Clayton, with a foreword by Janet Austin Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2019 $26.95 / 9781550178647 Reviewed by Patrick A. Dunae * The Office of the Lieutenant Governor is perhaps best known to the public for its pageantry. But it has an important constitutional function. It was created…
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#650 Love in vile places

Love in Vile Places: Military Hospitals as the Site of Care and Nurture by Jo-Anne Fiske * For Remembrance Day 2019 we present a memoir by Jo-Anne Fiske of François Lake, in BC’s north-central interior, of her father Humphrey William Fiske (1886-1959). At the time of his enlistment in Kelowna in 1916, the Norfolk-born Fiske…
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#628 Myths, Mounties, and Métis

Sam Steele: A Biography by Rod Macleod Edmonton: University of Alberta Press, 2018 $35.99 / 9781772123791 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb * There’s a CBC Heritage Minute about Sam Steele. You may have seen it. A stern, moustachioed Mountie sits at his rough wooden desk, staring down an excitable American prospector who wants to wear pistols…
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#627 Out of a Danish orphanage

Feast of Fields by Sean Karemaker Wolfville, NS: Conundrum Press, 2018 $18.00 / 9781772620252 Reviewed by Chris Fink-Jensen * Feast of Fields, by Vancouver artist Sean Karemaker, is a graphic biography that tells the story of his mother’s childhood experiences living in an orphanage in Denmark. The book begins from Karemaker’s own perspective, recounting a…
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#625 To Italy with Stendhal

A Promise on the Horizon by Ann Pearson Vancouver: Granville Island Publishing, 2019 $24.95 / 9781989467022 Reviewed by Valerie Green * Ann Pearson’s work of biographical fiction, A Promise on the Horizon, will be greatly esteemed by historians, academic researchers, and lovers of the Napoleonic era. Pearson takes the reader on a delightful journey of…
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#624 Fishing the Kamloops trout

Trout School: Lessons from a Fly-Fishing Master by Mark Hume with Mo Bradley, illustrated by Nana Cook and with a foreword by Claire Hume Vancouver: Greystone Books, 2019 $22.95 / 9781771644167 Reviewed by Myles Armstead * Most fly-fishing books fall into two categories: those that speak of the natural beauty and the philosophical ponderings of…
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#618 The deeper language of women

Women’s Writing in Canada by Patricia Demers University of Toronto Press, 2019 $34.95 / 9780802095015 Reviewed by Linda Rogers * They used to throw women artists in mental institutions, our radical behaviour disruptive to the norm. Across the street from my house, there is a half way home for mentally challenged adults, the victims of…
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#599 Coast Salish women revealed

Interwoven Lives: Indigenous Mothers of Salish Coast Communities by Candace Wellman Pullman, WA: Washington State University Press, 2019 $27.95 (U.S.) / 9780874223644 Reviewed by Marie Elliott * Researching settlement history can take you in many directions, some more challenging than others. While helping people with their family histories at the Washington State Archives in Bellingham,…
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#596 Escape from the fish farm

Jim Christy: A Vagabond Life by Ian Cutler, with a foreword by Luis E. Navia Port Angeles, WA: Feral House, 2019 $17.95 (U.S.) / 9781627310741 Reviewed by John Moore * Literary biography is a problematic genre. Ostensibly, its purpose is to illuminate the author’s work, but writing about an author inevitably means competing with a…
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#590 Mission to skid row

In His Steps: The Life and Times of Wilberforce Cooper, Vancouver’s Skid Road Priest by Peter J. Cooper Victoria: Friesen Press, 2019 $27.68 / 9781525544545 Reviewed by Phyllis Reeve * St. James’s Anglican Church presides over Vancouver’s Downtown East Side — presides over but does not loom over. Described as simultaneously Byzantine, Gothic Revival, and…
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#575 The late, great, James Teit

At the Bridge: James Teit and An Anthropology of Belonging by Wendy Wickwire Vancouver: UBC Press, 2019 $34.95 / 9780774861526 Reviewed by Daniel Marshall * On February 6, 2020, At the Bridge: James Teit and An Anthropology of Belonging, by Wendy Wickwire, was shortlisted for the annual George Ryga Award, given to a B.C. writer…
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#573 B.C.’s forgotten artists

The Ormsby Review presents a joint review of all ten books in the Unheralded Artists of B.C. Series from Mother Tongue Publishing of Salt Spring Island, 2008-2017. — Ed. Monika Ullmann, with an introduction by Brooks Joyner, The Life and Art of David Marshall (Mother Tongue: 2008) (UABC #1) Eve Lazarus, Claudia Cornwall, and Wendy Newbold…
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#570 Rolf Knight (1936-2019)

Rolf Knight (1936-2019) An obituary by Alan Twigg * Born on March 4, 1936, the son of an itinerant cook, Rolf Knight grew up in remote B.C. logging camps, without other children to play with. He gained his M.A. in anthropology at UBC in 1962, and a Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1968. For decades…
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