Memoir

1054 Foiling the fertility clock

Catalogue Baby: A Memoir of (In)fertility by Myriam Steinberg, illustrations by Christache Vancouver: Page Two Books, 2021 $23.95 / 9781989603642 Reviewed by Margot Fedoruk * Warning: you’re going to need to set aside some uninterrupted time to savour Myriam Steinberg’s new graphic novel, Catalogue Baby: A Memoir of (In)fertility because it is hard to put…
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1052 Covid & the Zoom engine of poetry

INTERVIEW: Terence Young with Nathaniel G. Moore  * Terence Young lives in Victoria, where he has recently retired from teaching English and creative writing at St. Michaels University School. He is a co-founder of The Claremont Review (1992), an international literary journal for young writers that has, after 25 years of service to the writing community,…
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1047 Vignettes from the front line

A Paramedic’s Tales: Hilarious, Horrible and Heartwarming True Stories by Graeme Taylor Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2020 $24.95 / 9781550179026 Reviewed by May Q Wong * I can almost hear him say “Have I told you about the time…?” These are the kind of adventure stories one might hear around a campfire, a family dinner…
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1046 Featuring Anne Wheeler

Taken by the Muse: On the Path to Becoming a Filmmaker by Anne Wheeler Edmonton: Newest Press, 2020 $20.95 / 9781774390016 Reviewed by Lynne Bowen * A train has stopped on a prairie siding. A passenger watches through the window as several children play shinny on a frozen water-filled ditch beside the tracks. It is…
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1042 A culture of coastal pottery

My Life as a Potter: Stories and Techniques by Mary Fox Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2020 $44.95 / 97815501179385 Reviewed by Maria Tippett * Part I of Mary Fox’s lavishly illustrated My Life as a Potter: Stories and Techniques charts the artist’s career beginning with the hand-built figurative sculptures she fashioned out of found clay…
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1036 Kootenay Doukhobor family saga

Our Backs Warmed By the Sun: Memories of a Doukhobor Life by Vera Maloff Halfmoon Bay, Caitlin Press, 2020 $24.95 / 9781773860398 Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * Doukhobor Diaspora: A family oral history offers an antidote to past misunderstandings about the Russian sect When I was in my teens, a terrible explosion rocked my West…
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1033 On the road with Trevor Carolan

Road Trips: Journeys in the Unspoiled World by Trevor Carolan Salt Spring Island: Mother Tongue Publishing, 2020 $21.95 / 9781896949802 Reviewed by Brian Harvey * People writing about travel are like musicians playing a well-known piece. Both are interpreters, offering us their take on something that many have already seen or heard. Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata,…
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1022 A poet addicted to language

Hearts Amok: A Memoir in Verse by Kevin Spenst Vancouver: Anvil Press, 2020 $18.00 / 9781772141498 Reviewed by Christopher Levenson * One of the most basic requirements of any poet is that he or she is addicted to language. Other specialized knowledge and skills can come later, but a burning curiosity about words, their origins, and…
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1021 Canadian science on Easter Island

Stanley’s Dream: The Medical Expedition to Easter Island by Jacalyn Duffin Montréal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2019 $39.95 / 9780773557109 Reviewed by Colin Levings * Stanley’s Dream, Jacalyn Duffin’s book on the 1964-65 Medical Expedition to Easter Island (METEI) is an intriguing detailed compendium, retrospective analysis, and overall fascinating story of one of Canada’s…
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1019 Prisoners of hope and memory

The Girl Who Stole Everything: A Novel by Norman Ravvin Montreal: Linda Leith Éditions, 2019 $21.95 / 9781773900278 * Prisoners of Hope: Rising from the Ashes of the Holocaust: An Eyewitness Account of Life in the Auschwitz Extermination Camp and Two Slave Labour Camps (1944-1945) by George L. Pal (Former Prisoner #42821) Victoria: George L….
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1008 Mighty land, small laws

The Diary of Dukesang Wong: A Voice from Gold Mountain by Dukesang Wong, edited by David McIlwraith, translated by Wanda Joy Hoe Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2020 $18.95 / 9781772012583 Reviewed by May Q. Wong * For almost 140 years, the voices of the thousands of Chinese who built the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) have been silent….
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Frederick Paget Norbury: Introduction

Frederick Paget Norbury, Remittance Man or Gentleman Immigrant? The Story of an Englishman in Canada by Brenda Callaghan * Editor’s note: We are pleased to present the first instalment of the late Brenda Callaghan’s biography and selected correspondence of East Kootenay settler Frederick Paget Norbury (1867-1940). In 1887, Norbury became one of the first immigrants…
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1007 Love affair with Africa

Moon Madness: Dr. Louise Aall, Sixty Years of Healing in Africa by Alan Twigg Vancouver: Ronsdale Books, 2019 $21.95 / 9781553805939 Reviewed by Valerie Green * In writing the true-life story of Dr. Louise Aall (pronounced All), author Alan Twigg has produced a spellbinding biography about an incredible woman. For sixty years, Dr. Aall devoted…
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1006 Three bad bills of 1983

Tranquility Lost: The Occupation of Tranquille & Battle for Community Care in BC by Gary Steeves Gibsons, Nightwood Editions, 2020 $21.95 / 9780889713864 Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * Three bad bills revisited: BC’s Operation Solidarity and the attack on public services in the early 1980s. Being on a picket line, protesting in the street, or…
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