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#309 Christy Clark’s downfall

First published May 28, 2018. A Matter of Confidence: The Inside Story of the Political Battle for BC by Rob Shaw and Richard Zussman Victoria: Heritage House, 2018. $22.95  /  9781772032543 Reviewed by Hamish Telford * The British Columbia provincial election on May 9, 2017 was one for the history books. After a long night…
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#308 A little revolution, please

First published May 25, 2018. City on Edge: A Rebellious Century of Vancouver Protests, Riots, and Strikes by Kate Bird, foreword by Charles Demers Vancouver: Greystone Books, 2017. $32.95  /  9781771643139 Reviewed by Larry Hannant * We would be remiss if we did not preface this review with a notation that Michael Barnholden has previously…
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#307 Why Liberals dominate federally

First published May 24, 2018. The Canadian Party System: An Analytic History by Richard Johnston Vancouver: UBC Press, 2017. $55  /  9780774836074 Reviewed by Adam Coombs *      Few political parties in countries within the Westminster political system have been as successful over the course of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries as the Liberal Party…
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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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#304 Nancy Richler (1957-2018)

First published May 17, 2018. “In all my writing, I explore the slipperiness of morality and identity in the face of extreme loss and threat, though the settings and circumstances change with each novel.” — Nancy Richler. All of Nancy Richler’s novels were written in Vancouver. The first of these, Throwaway Angels, was shortlisted for…
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#303 Removing antagonism to win

First published May 15, 2018. Pulling Together: A Coach’s Journey to Uncover the Mindset of True Potential by Jason Dorland, foreword by David Meggyesy Victoria: Heritage House, 2017. $19.95  /  9781772031737 Reviewed by Brian Fraser * Jason Dorland is on a mission. He’s well prepared. He has spent his life training, performing, and coaching as…
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#302 Middle class artist on relief

Alan Caswell Collier, Relief Stiff: An Artist’s Letters from Depression-era British Columbia by Peter Neary (editor) Vancouver: UBC Press, 2018 $45.00  /  9780774834988 Reviewed by Daniel Francis First published May 8, 2018 * Most British Columbians live within an easy drive of one of the unemployment relief camps established by the federal government during the…
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#301 Glory days of Park Wardens

The Green Horse: My Early Years in the Canadian Rockies — A Park Warden’s Story by Dale Portman Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2017 $25.00  / 9781771602266 Reviewed by Michelle Murphy First published May 7, 2018 * Like many, I am captivated by the beauty and vastness of the Canadian Rockies – and curious about the…
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#300 By horse to the Muskwa-Kechika

Summer of the Horse: A Memoir by Donna Kane Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2017 $19.95. 9781550178197 Reviewed by Heather Longworth Sjoblom First published May 7, 2018 * “Wilderness… is a place that retains its beauty because it escapes us.” — Donna Kane In her literary memoir, Summer of the Horse, Donna Kane explores the wilderness…
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#298 Three tributes to Al Neil

First published May 4, 2018. An obituary on this site has already recorded the life and times — and books — of Al Neil. But there’s nothing like a personal reminiscence–or three–to reveal how extraordinary and perplexing and difficult and odd he could be.                   1. In…
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#297 From Gallant to Kafka

First published May 4, 2018. The Two of Us by Kathy Page Windsor, Ontario: Biblioasis, 2016. $19.95  /  9781771960991 Reviewed by Paul Headrick   Kathy Page’s fiction has often been the bridesmaid, not the bride. After she was longlisted for the Giller Prize in 2014 for her story collection, Paradise & Elsewhere, Page was longlisted…
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#296 Margaret’s Ormsby’s milieu

Memoir: Margaret’s Ormsby’s milieu by Daniel Marshall * The influence of Quesnel-born B.C. historian Margaret Anchoretta Ormsby (1909-1996) on younger generations of scholars and readers continues more than two decades after her death. Not only has The Ormsby Review perpetuated her name — and we hope her commitment to the culture and literature of British…
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#295 Cinderella Campaign revisited

The Cinderella Campaign: First Canadian Army and the Battles for the Channel Ports by Mark Zuehlke Vancouver: Douglas & McIntyre, 2017 $37.95  /  9781771620895 Reviewed by Norm Fennema First published April 30, 2018 * Prolific historian Mark Zuehlke describes how battle-hardened but “woefully understrength” Canadian soldiers chased retreating Germans north towards the Seine River in…
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#294 From A (Ansel) to Z (Zizka)

First published April 28, 2018. The Canadian Rockies: Rediscovered by Paul Zizka Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2017. $50  /  9781771602310 Reviewed by Mary Sanseverino * Revelstoke native and retired computer scientist Mary Sanseverino of the Canadian Mountain Legacy Project compares the work of Banff-based photographer Paul Zizka to American wilderness lensmen Ansell Adams and Galen…
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#293 Emotional time bombs

First published April 25, 2018. The Promise of Water by Judy LeBlanc (Oolichan: 2017) 978-0-88982-320-4 $19.95 tp Review by Caroline Woodward * Judy LeBlanc’s debut collection evokes a tangible sense of place—Vancouver Island—where the sweet fragrance of cedar mingles with the murky odours of damp mould and stale cigarette smoke can be washed away by…
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#292 Hidden gems in Kelowna

A Legacy of Canadian Art, from Kelowna Collections by Roger H. Boulet Kelowna: The Kelowna Art Gallery, 2017 $15.00 / 9781896749860 Reviewed by Maria Tippett First posted April 23, 2018 * Drawn from eight private collections in Kelowna as well as from the permanent collection of the Kelowna Art Gallery, A Legacy of Canadian Art, from…
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#291 Disturbing: the Peace

Breaching the Peace: The Site C Dam and a Valley’s Stand against Big Hydro by Sarah Cox, foreword by Alex Neve Vancouver: UBC Press (On Point Press), 2018 $24.95  /  9780774890267 Review by John Gellard First published April 21, 2018 * From UBC Press’s new On Point Press, which aims to “introduce a broad audience…
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#290 Grieving with Google

Sitting Shiva on Minto Avenue, by Toots by Erín Moure Vancouver: New Star Books, 2017 $21.00  /  9781554201419 Reviewed by Claire Sicherman First published April 19, 2018 * It is three weeks after the death of her former lover, Paul Émile Savard, when author Erín Moure learns he is dead, and that he died alone…
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