Natural history & science

#338 Julia, graphically yours

First published Jul. 8, 2018. Julia by Michael Kluckner Vancouver: Midtown Press, 2018. $19.95  /  9781988242200 Reviewed by Yvonne Van Ruskenveld Julia Henshaw is possibly the first woman in B.C. to have published a novel. She remains almost entirely unknown, although she was accorded an extensive entry in Alan Twigg’s Vancouver and Its Writers (Harbour:…
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#324 We all bleed the same

First published June 18, 2018. Orca: How We Came to Know and Love the Ocean’s Greatest Predator by Jason M. Colby Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2018. $32.95  /  9780190673093 Reviewed by Anna Hall * According to reviewer Anna Hall, a zoologist, Orca: How We Came to Know and Love the Ocean’s Greatest Predator by UVic’s…
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#305 Finding the Erebus and Terror

Ice Ghosts: The Epic Hunt for the Lost Franklin Expedition by Paul Watson Toronto: Penguin Random House (McClelland & Stewart), 2017 $34.95  /  9780771096525 Reviewed by Walter O. Volovsek First published May 17, 2018 * Based in Coquitlam, B.C., the remarkable Paul Watson–not to confused with that Sea Shepherd captain also named Paul Watson who…
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#284 Field Guide to Insects

First published April 7, 2018. A Field Guide to Insects of the Pacific Northwest by Robert Cannings Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2018. $7.95  /  9781550178340 Reviewed by Norma Kerby * One of the major gaps for the enthusiastic amateur naturalist has been an approachable guide to insects. Robert Cannings’ new field guide goes some distance…
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#282 Sea creatures as teachers

Pacific Reef and Shore: A Photo Guide to Northwest Marine Life from Alaska to Northern California (Revised Second Edition) (First published by Harbour in 2003 as Pacific Reef and Shore: A Photo Guide to Northwest Marine Life) by Rick Harbo Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2017 $12.95  /  9781550177862 Reviewed by Cathy Carolsfeld First published April…
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#271 Birding hotspots of B.C.

First published Mar. 23, 2018. Best Places to Bird in British Columbia by Russell Cannings and Richard Cannings Vancouver: Greystone Books, 2017. $22.95  /  9781771641661 Reviewed by Briony Penn Naturalist and geographer Briony Penn reviews Best Places to Bird which highlights 275 B.C. bird species, viewable from thirty locations–more than half of B.C.’s species. –…
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#268 How rivers can remember

Where The River Flows: Scientific Reflections on Earth’s Waterways by Sean W. Fleming Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2017 $26.95 (U.S.).  /  9781400885022 Reviewed by Colin Levings First published March 19, 2018 * Sean Fleming, who received his B.Sc. and Ph.D. from UBC in 1994 and 2004 and is now a member of UBC’s Department…
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#266 Pioneering stargazer J.S. Plaskett

Northern Star: J.S. Plaskett by R. Peter Broughton, with a foreword by James E. Hesser Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2018. $67.50  / 9781442630178 Reviewed by John Hutchings First published Mar. 17, 2018 * John Stanley Plaskett (1865-1941) was the founder and first director of the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory in Victoria. This biography is well-timed, published…
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#244 Downtown Eastside influencers

Fighting for Space: How a Group of Drug Users Transformed One City’s Struggle with Addiction by Travis Lupick Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2017 $24.95  /  9781551527123 Reviewed by Danya Fast First published Feb. 4, 2018 * Locally and globally, Vancouver is celebrated for its world-class harm reduction and social housing programs, and regarded as a…
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#223 Starvation Cove & Terror Bay

Frozen in Time: The Fate of the Franklin Expedition by Owen Beattie and John Geiger, with a foreword by Wade Davis and an introduction by Margaret Atwood. First published by Western Producer Prairie Books, 1988; subsequent editions by Douglas & McIntyre, 1998, and Greystone, 2004 and 2014 Vancouver: Greystone Books, 2017 $24.95  /  9781771641739 Reviewed…
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#106 Devastation beyond germs

Beyond Germs: Native Depopulation in North America Catherine M. Cameron, Paul Kelton, and Alan C. Swedlund (editors) Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2015 U.S. $29.95  /  9780816535545 Reviewed by Jody Decker First published March 18, 2017 * As a follow-up to Courtney Kirk’s review of Tom Swanky’s controversial The Smallpox War in Nuxalk Territory [See…
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#79 Emptying the grasslands

First published Jan. 25, 2017 REVIEW: Crossing Home Ground: A Grassland Odyssey through Southern Interior British Columbia By David Pitt-Brooke Madeira Park: Harbour, 2016. $32.95  /  978-1-55017-774-9 David Pitt-Brooke — naturalist, veterinarian, and writer — walked a thousand kilometres through the grasslands of the southern interior of British Columbia, from the American border to the Cariboo…
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