Take it from the top

“It has helped me realize just how insignificant life is, but also how complex, beautiful, and special it is all at the same time.” Jeffrey Stychin reviews Cosmic Wonder: Our Place in the Epic Story of the Universe by Nathan Hellner-Mestelman (Montreal: Linda Leith Publishing, 2024) $24.95 / 9781773901596

Gravity and light through a poetic lens

Engaging, insightful poems entwine love, nature, and the cosmos.—gillian harding-russell reviews Asterisms, by Donna Kane (Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2024) $22.95 / 9871990776717

No. 2000 for the BC Review!

When we launched The British Columbia Review — then The Ormsby Review — in September 2016, little did we expect that seven years later we’d post our 2000th review. I’m grateful to everyone — reviewers, publishers, authors, booksellers, and readers — for making it such a success and promoting BC writers, writing, and culture. It…
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1088 Music, extinction, and stardust

Stardust: memoir and essays by an astronomer who became a psychiatrist by Jaime Smith Vancouver: Granville Island Publishing, 2021 $19.95 /  9781989467305 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb * Editor’s note: Jaime Smith’s new book Stardust, reviewed here by Sheldon Goldfarb, contains Smith’s essays and his previously-published memoir Foxtrot: Notes from the Bear Cave, reviewed here by Peter Ward in…
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1080 Across the universe with Hubble

Not Yet Imagined: A Study of Hubble Space Telescope Operations by Christopher Gainor Washington, DC: National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Office of Communications, NASA History Division, 2020 9781626830615 free eBook (PDF) available here Reviewed by John Hutchings * This is a scholarly but very readable tome that describes — in some 450 pages — the…
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#860 Astronomy, psychiatry, reflection

Foxtrot: Notes from the Bear Cave by Jaime Smith Victoria: FriesenPress, 2020 $13.99 / 9781525574726 Available from FriesenPress bookshop or Amazon Reviewed by Peter Ward * An autobiography may seek to explain, to persuade, to justify — or simply to recollect. Foxtrot does the latter and it’s richer for the choice. It’s a short book…
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#744 Bob McDonald leaves the planet

An Earthling’s Guide to Outer Space: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Black Holes, Dwarf Planets, Aliens, and More by Bob McDonald Toronto: Simon & Schuster Canada, 2019 $29.99 / 9781982106850 Reviewed by John Hutchings * Victoria-based Bob McDonald is a Canadian icon of science reporting and a catalyst of informed popular discussion. In…
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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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