Travel

1013 Coast to coast with the CPR

Railway Nation: Tales of Canadian Pacific, the World’s Greatest Travel System by David Laurence Jones Victoria: Heritage House, 2020 $34.95 / 9781772033496 Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * Riding the Rails into Canada’s History: Illustrated anecdotes offer famous and lesser-known stories about the CPR. We can still hear the distant call of a diesel engine’s whistle…
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#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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#982 Notable Viking networks

Gone Viking: A Travel Saga by Bill Arnott Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2020 $25.00 / 9781771604475 Reviewed by Howard Macdonald Stewart * Most of the stories in Bill Arnott’s Gone Viking describe travel around Britain and the North Atlantic world. A unifying theme is the imprint left on many of these places by those Scandinavian…
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#966 A torrent of collective memory

The E.J. Hughes Book of Boats by Robert Amos Victoria: TouchWood Editions, 2020 $22.00 / 9781771513364 Reviewed by Brian Harvey * For the British Columbia painter E.J. Hughes, who died in Duncan in 2007, the sea was never far away. Hughes wasn’t the only famous Canadian artist to include boats in his canvases — we’ll…
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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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#940 Mack the transcontinentalist

Riding the Continent by Hamilton Mack Laing, edited by Trevor Marc Hughes, foreword by Richard Mackie Vancouver: Ronsdale Press, 2019 $19.95 / 9781553805564 Reviewed by Steve Koerner All B&W photos courtesy of H.M. Laing Collection, Comox Archives and Museum Society * The hit 1969 movie Easy Rider featured two hippies, the self-styled “Captain America” and…
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#915 Shutting down parliament, 1970

The Abortion Caravan by Karin Wells Toronto: Second Story Press, 2020 $24.95 / 9781772601251 Reviewed by Donalda Reid * Karin Wells has written an engaging book, The Abortion Caravan, about the 1970 national women’s march on Parliament aimed at forcing changes to Canada’s abortion laws. Her book takes us back fifty years into a period…
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#914 Flying union high

Arrivals and Departures by Christine Hayvice Toronto: Unifor Local 2002, 2020 $35.00 / 9780968150511. Contact address: airlineworker1990@gmail.com Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * Flying Union High: An insider’s look at the history of union bargaining at Canada’s airlines I love flying and I’ve done my share of it. Now I’m grounded like most of the world, thanks…
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#912 Now that the coast is clear

Sailing with Vancouver: A Modern Sea Dog, Antique Charts and a Voyage Through Time by Sam McKinney Victoria: TouchWood Editions, 2018 (first published 2010) $20.00 / 9781771512640 Reviewed by Brian Harvey * I once got the urge to see all the apartments and houses where the British writer Malcolm Lowry had lived during his years…
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#906 East Kootenay to Himalaya

Blue Sky Kingdom: An Epic Family Journey to the Heart of the Himalaya by Bruce Kirkby Madeira Park: Douglas & McIntyre, 2020 $34.95 / 9781771622691 Reviewed by Éric Spalding * In Blue Sky Kingdom, Bruce Kirkby goes to a Buddhist monastery high up in the Himalayas. Accompanying the author on the trip are his wife…
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#897 On the road with Rosemary

Down the Road: Journeys Through Small-town British Columbia by Rosemary Neering Vancouver: Whitecap Books, 2019 (first published 1992, reprinted 2003) $22.95 / 9781770503243 Reviewed by Diana E. French * Rosemary Neering is an accomplished author who began her writing career as a travel magazine contributor. Her visits to many rural areas of British Columbia were…
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#893 Schell’s wine and food tour

The BC Wine Lover’s Cookbook: Recipes & Stories from Wineries Across British Columbia by Jennifer Schell, foreword by John Schreiner Toronto: Penguin Random House (Appetite by Random House), 2020 $35.00 / 9780525610366 Reviewed by Harvey De Roo * There’s something special about wine country and its people, and what better guide than Jennifer Schell, former editor…
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#890 Podiums, prototypes, and Plato

ESSAY: Unique ways of prototyping by Thomas Girard * Editor’s note: When asked to define “prototyping” as used in this essay, Thomas Girard replied: When I talk about “prototyping” here, I’m talking about it in part as I’ve learnt it in traditional design education, at Emily Carr University of Art + Design, years ago. In…
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#886 Lonely Planet Pocket Vancouver

Lonely Planet Pocket Vancouver: Top Sights, Local Experiences by John Lee London: Carlton, 2020 (3rd edition) (first published 2009) $13.99 (U.S.) / 9781787017573 Reviewed by Randolph Eustace-Walden * On June 24th of this year, the government of British Columbia lifted many of the COVID-19 restrictions within the province. This decision signalled the beginning of Phase…
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#870 A clear-eyed analysis of fear

Nerve: A Personal Journey Through the Science of Fear by Eva Holland Toronto: Penguin Random House (Allen Lane), 2020 $32.95 / 9780735237339 Reviewed by Theo Dombrowski * Editor’s note: The West Coast Book Prize Society announced on April 8, 2021, that Nerve: A Personal Journey Through the Science of Fear, by Eva Holland, has been shortlisted for…
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#852 Plenty of dust but no pilaf

Lands of Lost Borders: Out of Bounds on the Silk Road by Kate Harris Toronto: Penguin Random House (Vintage Canada), 2018 $21.00 / 9780345816788 Reviewed by Howard Stewart * Kate Harris’s tale of bicycling the Silk Road of Central Asia, her Land of Lost Borders, came out a couple of years ago and it describes…
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#849 The BC coast by wooden boat

Becoming Coastal: 25 Years of Exploration and Discovery of the British Columbia Coast by Paddle, Oar and Sail by Alex Zimmerman Cocoa Beach, Florida: Seaworthy Publications, 2020 $34.95  / 9781948494274 Distributed by Red Toque Books and available at independent bookstores Reviewed by Brian Harvey * Coastlines are elemental. They offer both access and exit, entry…
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#845 BC portion Trans Canada Trail

The Best of the Great Trail, Volume 2: Northern Ontario to British Columbia on the Trans Canada Trail by Michael Haynes Fredericton: Goose Lane Editions, 2019 $29.95  /  9781773100326 Reviewed by Walter Volovsek * As a trail builder and avid hiker, I was very impressed by Michael Haynes’s Volume 2 of The Best of the…
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#837 The global frame of Deni Béchard

My Favourite Crime: Essays and Journalism from Around the World by Deni Ellis Béchard Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2019 $24.95 / 9781772012323 Reviewed by Howard Stewart * Deni Béchard’s My Favourite Crime is a powerful collection of writing. The book’s cover blurb, not something I usually put much faith in, contains much truth: this really is an…
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