Memoir

#991 Balkans, bicycles, baksheesh

Our Trip Around the World by Renate Belczyk Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2020 $22.00 / 9781771603775 Reviewed by Theo Dombrowski * Travel books have been with us for centuries. Homer’s saga of Odysseus’s ten years’ foray around the Aegean amongst monsters and temptresses set a high bar for adventure. It was in the age of…
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#990 All grandfathers are created equal

Grandfathered: Dispatches from the Trenches of Modern Grandparenthood by Ian Haysom Victoria: Heritage House Publishing, 2020 $22.95 / 9781772033335 Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * All grandfathers are created equal: They all share the pleasure of a tiny hand slipping into their own. I skipped the grandfather stage of life and went straight to great grandfathering,…
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#988 Making lives at Oona River

Once Upon an Island: Hope and Hardship, Building a Log House and a Life on the North Coast of British Columbia by Suellen Guenther Victoria: Vargas Publishing, 2020 $29.95 / 9781771368421 Reviewed by Kate Braid * Once Upon An Island is the story of a young woman, Suellen Guenther, who in 1970 after a stint…
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#979 A fiery & persevering love affair

Through the Garden: A Love Story (with Cats) by Lorna Crozier Toronto: Penguin Random House (McClelland and Stewart), 2020 $29.95 / 9780771021183 Reviewed by Kathy Mezei * We know of famous, sometimes notorious, writing couples — Virginia and Leonard Woolf, Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes, Joan Didion and John Gregory Dunne, Simone Beauvoir and Jean-Paul…
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#978 Crazy about lumber

Hammer & Nail: Notes of a Journeywoman by Kate Braid Halfmoon Bay: Caitlin Press, 2020 $22.95 / 9781773860336 Reviewed by Jennifer Chutter * Kate Braid’s new memoir, Hammer & Nail: Notes of a Journeywoman, provides glimpses of her life as a carpenter, primarily in the Lower Mainland, during the 1970s and 1980s. Through a series…
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#971 Aphorisms from an apiarist

Show Me the Honey: Adventures of an Accidental Apiarist by Dave Doroghy, foreword by Rick Hansen Victoria: TouchWood Editions, 2020 $25.00 / 9781771513227 Reviewed by Natalie Lang * Bees. Those black and yellow winged creatures buzzing about and smelling the roses; perhaps there is more to them than meets the eye. Do they hold the…
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#969 Piquing interest in Purdy

An Echo in the Mountains: Al Purdy after a Century by Nicholas Bradley (editor) Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2020 $34.95 / 9780228003373 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb * “Purdy,” I say. “Al Purdy. Have you heard of him?” “You mean like the chocolates?” She is probably joking. I am asking people I know outside…
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#964 Travelling the higher heights

A Story of Karma: Finding Love and Truth in the Lost Valley of the Himalaya by Michael Schauch Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2020 $25.00 / 9781771604673 A review essay by Trevor Carolan * Adventure travel goes through phases. In the Sixties you went off to Formentera in the Balearics or Corfu to find yourself. India…
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#960 West Kootenay baby boomer buba

Tuesdays with Jack: A Grandmother’s Love and a Little Boy’s Brilliance by Pauline Daniel Vancouver: Granville Island Publishing, 2018 $18.95 / 9781926991825 Reviewed by Rose Morrison * Author Pauline Daniel, who likes to be known as the “how to follow your heart” coach, is the owner of Coaching Connections, a coaching service for women. She…
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#954 A counsellor’s perilous odyssey

Borderline Shine: A Memoir by Connie Greshner, with a foreword by Theresa Therriault Toronto: Dundurn, 2020 $19.99 / 9781459746121 Reviewed by Phyllis Reeve * Connie Greshner calls her book a “memoir” but it doesn’t feel like a memoir. It feels like those painful slapstick comedies in which the protagonist suffers pratfall after pratfall, supposedly for…
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#950 L.A. Woman, Billy, and Jim

Love her Madly: Jim Morrison, Mary, and Me. A Memoir by Bill Cosgrave Dundurn Press, 2020 $18.99 / 9781459746602 Reviewed by Randolph Eustace-Walden * Christmas 1986. I’m spending the month in Thailand. The island of Phuket hasn’t been gentrified yet. The streets are still dirt, the food and accommodation choices are still varied and cheap,…
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