Tag: Essays

Rage + sin = freedom

Exceptional essays “elicit gasps, induce chills.” —Brett Josef Grubisic reviews Dinner on Monster Island: Essays, by Tania De Rozario (Toronto: HarperCollins Canada, 2024) $17.99 / 9780063299665

Authors’ origin stories (x 6)

Captivating essays trace authors’ careers from childhood onward…
Brett Josef Grubisic reviews Off the Record, by John Metcalf (editor) (Windsor: Biblioasis, 2023) $26.95 / 9781771965453

#400 The useful people’s ranch

Ranch in the Slocan: A Biography of a Kootenay Farm, 1896-2017 by Cole Harris Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2018 $24.95 / 9781550178234 Reviewed by Daniel Clayton * The Bosun Ranch, in reality a farm just south of New Denver on Slocan Lake, has been in the Harris family since 1896. “The ranch has always been…
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#399 Highways of courage

First published October 14, 2018. Rick Hansen’s Man in Motion World Tour: 30 Years Later – A Celebration of Courage, Strength, and the Power of Community by Jake MacDonald, foreword by Rick Hansen Vancouver: Greystone Books, 2017 $34.95 / 9781771643443 Reviewed by Brian Fraser * The adventure thrilled the world. A man in a wheelchair…
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#398 Boldness about oldness

Oldness; or, the Last-Ditch Efforts of Marcus O by Brett Josef Grubisic Surrey: Now or Never Publishing, 2018 $19.95  /  9781988098630 Reviewed by Dustin Cole First published October 13, 2018 * I am 37. When I think about being 65, different things come to mind. There is hope for both artistic fulfillment and recognition. There are…
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#397 B.C. sculptor lost and found

Rebel Muse: My Life With Peter Paul Ochs by Monika Ullmann Victoria: ProWord Publishing, 2018 $25.00  /  9780992144937 Reviewed by Grahame Ware First published October 12, 2018 * Editor’s note: In an email to the Ormsby Review, freelance writer and journalist Monika Ullmann recalled that when the new Provincial Museum of British Columbia (now the Royal…
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#396 Letters to Drumheller

First published Oct. 10, 2018. Dead Reckoning: How I Came to Meet the Man Who Murdered my father. by Carys Cragg Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2017. $19.95  /  9781551526973 Reviewed by Phyllis Reeve * It has been a good year for Carys Cragg of Port Coquitlam. Her Dead Reckoning, published by Arsenal Pulp Press, was announced…
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#395 Meanwhile, 5,000 years ago

First published Oct. 8, 2018. Archaeology of the Lower Fraser River Region by Mike K. Rousseau, editor Burnaby: Archaeology Press of Simon Fraser University, 2017 $30.00 / 9781772870121 Reviewed by Robert (Bob) Muckle Also open access. Free download: http://archpress.lib.sfu.ca/index.php/archpress/catalog/book/72 * In 2011, Mike Rousseau recruited 33 active archaeologists and scholars in related disciplines to contribute…
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#394 Supernatural Haida Columbia

Out of Concealment: Female Supernatural Beings of Haida Gwaii by gid7ahl-gudsllaay lalaxaaygans (Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson), with forewords by Wade Davis and gwaaganad (Diane Brown) Victoria: Heritage House, 2017 $29.95 / 9781772031607 Reviewed by Gillian Crowther * In Out of Concealment: Female Supernatural Beings of Haida Gwaii, Haida artist and activist Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson encounters 33 supernatural beings of Haida mythology….
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#393 A British, British Columbia

It Begins in Betrayal: A Lane Winslow Mystery by Iona Whishaw Victoria: Touchwood, 2018 $16.95  /  9781771512619 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb * A Sorrowful Sanctuary: A Lane Winslow Mystery by Iona Whishaw Victoria: Touchwood, 2018 $16.95 / 9781771512893 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb First published Oct. 5, 2018 * Former high school principal and social worker…
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#392 From boss logger to zero

First published Oct. 4, 2018. The Tree Trunk Can Be My Pillow: The Biography of an Outstanding Japanese Canadian by Tadashi Jack Kagetsu Victoria: University of Victoria, 2017. $33.95  /  9781550586114 Reviewed by Bob Griffin * The government of Canada declared war on Japan on December 8, 1941, a day after the Japanese attacks on…
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#391 In the Macarees’ footsteps

First published Oct. 3, 2018. 105 Hikes in and around Southwestern British Columbia by Stephen Hui, foreword by Cease Wyss (T’uy’t’tanat) Vancouver: Greystone: 2018 $24.95 / 9781771642866 Reviewed by Glenn Woodsworth * The relative growth of recreational hiking in southwest B.C. has far outpaced the region’s population growth. Fifty years ago, the number of people…
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#390 From Xinhuixian to Quesnel

From Wah Lee to Chew Keen: The Story of a Pioneer Chinese Family in North Cariboo by Liping Wong Yip Victoria: FriesenPress Publishers, 2017 $17.49 / 9781460294307 Reviewed by Tzu-I Chung * In 1917, Wah Lee and his third wife, Mon Ho, boarded the Empress of Russia in Hong Kong, bound for British Columbia. They…
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#388 Indian fishing revived

Indian Fishing: Early Methods on the Northwest Coast by Hilary Stewart, foreword by Michael Kew Madeira Park: Douglas & McIntyre, 2018 (first published by J.J. Douglas, 1977) $28.95 / 9781771621854 Reviewed by Dana Lepofsky First published Sept. 30, 2018 * Editor’s Note: Born in Saint Lucia in the West Indies in 1924, Hilary Majendie Stewart…
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#387 Up where she belongs

First published Sept. 29, 2018. Buffy Sainte-Marie: The Authorized Biography by Andrea Warner, foreword by Joni Mitchell Vancouver: Greystone Books 2018 $36.00 / 9781771643580 Reviewed by Jo-Anne Fiske * Envision a young woman, naïve and conservative in 1965. She sat proudly in her undergraduate history class as the professor led discussion on the fifty-year commemoration…
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#386 All my generations

Imprint: A Memoir of Trauma in the Third Generation by Claire Sicherman Halfmoon Bay: Caitlin Press, 2017 $22.95 / 9781987915570 Reviewed by Mark Dwor First published Sept. 28, 2018 * Claire Sicherman opens Imprint: A Memoir of Trauma in the Third Generation with this dedication: My maternal grandparents were survivors of the Holocaust and I…
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#385 The carpenter of Koona

Those Born at Koona: The Totem Poles of the Haida Village Skedans, Haida Gwaii by Carolyn and John Smyly Surrey: Hancock House, 2018 (first published 1973) $29.95 / 9780888391018 Reviewed by Dan Savard First published Sept. 27, 2018 * In 1957, John Smyly (1924-2002) was hired as carpenter by the Provincial Museum of British Columbia…
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#384 Island hiking: all in the family

Family Walks and Hikes of Vancouver Island — Volume 1: Victoria to Nanaimo by Theo Dombrowski Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2018 $20.00 / 9781771602792 * Family Walks and Hikes of Vancouver Island — Volume 2: Nanaimo North to Strathcona Park by Theo Dombrowski Victoria: Rocky Mountain Books, 2018 $20.00 / 9781771602815 Reviewed by Christian Fink-Jensen…
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#383 Sea change on Gabriola

First published Sept. 24, 2018. Changemakers: Embracing Hope, Taking Action, and Transforming the World by Fay Weller and Mary Wilson Gabriola Island: New Society, 2018 $17.99 / 9780865718753 Reviewed by Sandi Ratch * Fay Weller and Mary Wilson of Gabriola Island have teamed up to present Changemakers: Embracing Hope, Taking Action, and Transforming the World, a…
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