Biography

#276 Alan Fry (1931-2018)

Alan Fry (1931-2018) An obituary by Alan Twigg First published March 30, 2018 * Whistleblowers are seldom cited as heroes—especially those who can be dismissed as crackpot racists. The importance of Federal Indian Agent Alan Fry’s first novel and second book, How a People Die (Doubleday 1970; Harbour 1994), has therefore gradually been glossed over,…
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#264 From John McCrae to Morrison

First published March 15, 2019. Morrison: The Long-lost Memoir of Canada’s Artillery Commander in the Great War. Major-General Sir Edward Morrison by Susan Raby-Dunne (editor) Victoria: Heritage House Publishing, 2017. $22.95  /  9781772032147 Reviewed by Michael Sasges * Edward Morrison was one of no more than fifty general officers who directed Canadian Corps battlefield activities…
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#211 From Prussia to Victoria

Essay: The Mysterious and Difficult Hermann Otto Tiedemann by Robert Ratcliffe Taylor First published November 26, 2017 * In this essay written specially for The Ormsby Review, Robert (Rob) Ratcliffe Taylor provides biography of Hermann Otto Tiedemann (1821-1891), the German-born surveyor, engineer, architect, and artist. He was one of thousands attracted to Victoria by the…
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#183 Modernist poet Blaise Cendrars

Blaise Cendrars Speaks… by Blaise Cendrars. Edited and with an introduction by Jim Christy, translated by David J. MacKinnon Victoria: Ekstasis Editions, 2016 $24.95  /  9781771711906 First published in Paris by Denoël, 1952 and 2016 Reviewed by Serge Alternês Review first published Oct. 16, 2017 * This upcoming Remembrance Day we might recall and commemorate…
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#129 Hornby haven for herd of steel

The Art of Jeffrey Rubinoff by James Fox (editor) Madeira Park: Douglas & McIntyre, 2016 $36.95  / 9781771621298 Reviewed by Catherine Nutting First published May 22, 2017 * The Art of Jeffrey Rubinoff concerns Rubinoff’s sculpture, the park on Hornby Island he shaped as a permanent sculptural exhibit and his conviction that the process of…
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#123 “I’ll bid you Klahowya”

A Great Old Tramp: Letters from a Canadian Sojourner in British Columbia, 1873-1875 by Greg Stott (editor) First published April 22, 2017 * Editor’s foreword: George Skippon–of whom there is no known photo–reached Victoria on April 26, 1873. He worked as a labourer on the present site of the Victoria airport and recorded the Lord’s…
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#110 Bill Reid’s legacy enhanced

Bill Reid Collected by Martine J. Reid Vancouver: Douglas & McIntyre, 2016, in collaboration with the Bill Reid Centre $19.95  /  9781771621151 Reviewed by Victoria Wyatt First Published March 28, 2017 * Much has been written about Bill Reid (1920-1998), the internationally known Haida artist whose monumental works appear in contexts such as the Canadian…
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#65 A fox behind a smile

First published Dec. 17, 2016 REVIEW: Christy Clark: Behind the Smile by Judi Tyabji Victoria: Heritage House, 2016. $ 32.95 / 9781772031065 Reviewed by John Douglas Belshaw * In Christy Clark: Behind the Smile, Judy Tyabji — Liberal MLA for Okanagan East from 1991-1996 — provides a biography of Christy Clark, Premier of B.C. since 2011….
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#54 Breaking the glass ceiling

The Life and Art of Mary Filer Salt Spring Island: Mother Tongue Publishers, 2016 $35.95. 9781896949550 by Christina Johnson-Dean, with an introduction by Robert Held Reviewed by Janet Mary Nicol First published Nov. 30, 2016 * The Life and Art of Mary Filer follows the career of the glass sculptor Mary Filer. Trained as a…
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#47 Ujjal’s odyssey

Nov. 21, 2016 REVIEW: Journey After Midnight: India, Canada and the Road Beyond by Ujjal Dosanjh Vancouver: Figure 1 Publishing, 2016. $34.95  978-1-927958-56-8 Reviewed by Hugh Johnston Journey After Midnight is Ujjal Dosanjh’s memoir of his journey from a village in the Punjab to London in 1964 and to Vancouver in 1968. His extraordinary journey would…
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#35 Canada’s forgotten superstar

Aloha Wanderwell: The Border-Smashing, Record-Setting Life of the World’s Youngest Explorer Fredericton, New Brunswick: Goose Lane Editions, 2016 by Christian Fink-Jensen and Randolph Eustace-Walden $24.95  /  9780864928955 Reviewed by Bonnie Reilly Schmidt First published October 31, 2016 * Recently BC’s remarkable Aloha Wanderwell (born Idris Hall, 1906-1996) was officially recognized by the Guinness Book of…
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#24 The Usain Bolt of 1954

The Bannister-Landy Miracle Mile at the Commonwealth Games in Vancouver in 1954 is the subject of perhaps the most famous photo ever taken in B.C., capturing that poignant moment when Landy looked over his shoulder as he was being passed by Bannister. The world’s first sub-four-minute mile, as well as the heartbreaking plight of champion…
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#19 The Reddest Rose

ESSAY: The Reddest Rose: Trade Unionist Harvey Murphy by Ron Vurzuh First Published: September 22nd, 2016 * Harvey Murphy is not a name that echoes loudly throughout the annals of 20th-century British Columbia labour history. In fact, the tireless trade union organizer, negotiator, and active Communist Party of Canada (CPC) bureaucrat has almost disappeared from…
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