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Death Writes

Death Writes

A Curious Notebook
by Darlene Quaife
edition:Paperback
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A publishing oddity, Death Writes: A Curious Notebook is both what you might expect--a handwritten notebook with doodles in the margins and clippings in the back; and what you might not expect--the perspective of Death him/herself, ruminating about the land of the living.
This unusual, stylish book is Death's personal notebook, which has been une …

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Making of a Grey Panther, The

Making of a Grey Panther, The

by Derrick Humphreys & John Munro
edition:Paperback
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tagged : political

The Derrick Humphreys Story is a superb biography, a life of adventure that begins in Dickensian England before World War I, then moves to the Western Australian mining frontier of the 1930s and '40s, with excursions into the New Guinea campaign in World War II, the De Beers' South African diamond empire, a foreign aid project in Brazil and the reb …

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Vancouver at the Dawn

Vancouver at the Dawn

A Turn-Of-The Century Portrait
by John A. Cherrington
edition:Paperback
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tagged : historical

At the dawn of the twentieth century, Vancouver was a mill town rapidly becoming a bustling cosmopolitan seaport. New technology proliferated, Klondike miners brawled their way through town, political turbulence and dramatic boom-and-bust cycles were the norm, Then as now, Vancouver was young, thriving, magnificently beautiful, and troubled by seri …

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Grizzlies & White Guys

Grizzlies & White Guys

The Stories of Clayton Mack
edited by Harvey Thommasen, by Clayton Mack
edition:Paperback
also available: Hardcover
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age: 14
Grade: 9
tagged : bears, personal memoirs

The extraordinary life story of Clayton Mack (1910-1993), a legendary hunting guide from the Nuxalk Nation (Bella Coola), is told in his own words. To Clayton Mack, who loved the wilderness and whose most precious memories were of the days when people got around without roads, told time without watches, and took planks from giant cedars without axe …

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Starting from Ameliasburgh

Starting from Ameliasburgh

The Collected Prose of Al Purdy
by Al Purdy
edition:Hardcover
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tagged : poetry, canadian, non-classifiable

During the years Al Purdy was becoming one of Canada's best-loved poets, he also wrote and published many pages of distinctive prose. This selection of almost forty years of essays and anecdotes is vintage Purdy. Part I, No Other Country, consists of essays on seeing the world as a Canadian. It begins as a fascinating travel diary as Purdy takes th …

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Raincoast Chronicles 16

Raincoast Chronicles 16

Time & Tide: A History of Telegraph Cove
by Pat Wastell Norris, preface by Howard White
edition:Paperback
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tagged : folklore & mythology

The Wastell family had much to contend with on a daily basis. Besides running a sawmill and surviving in very un-genteel circumstances, Norris's mother, a registered nurse, was the only source of medical help in the community. Not surprisingly, she had to treat all types of ailments ranging from pneumonia to severed fingers and deliver numerous bab …

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Notes on a Prison Wall

Notes on a Prison Wall

by Nicholas Catanoy
edition:Paperback
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tagged : canadian

In these poems, Nicholas Catanoy recreates the diary that he kept as a young cadet in Romania when he was imprisoned by the invading Russians. Taken out three times to be executed, Catanoy was one of the few from among the 200 prisoners to survive the random executions. After being released, Catanoy recreated in this memoir the impact of being a pr …

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Bloodlines

A Journey into Eastern Europe
by Myrna Kostash
edition:Paperback
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tagged : personal memoirs, russia & the former soviet union

"

Myrna Kostash began the first of her travels into Eastern Europe in the spring of 1982. Over the next six years, she returned many times on a quest that took her into a landscape both foreign and somehow familiar. The result is Bloodlines, a heady brew of travel narrative, history, anecdote, political analysis and childhood memories.

As Kostash jo …

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Lost in North America

Lost in North America

The Imaginary Canadian in the American Dream
by John Gray
edition:Paperback
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tagged : personal memoirs

Lost in North America is a caustic, humourous exploration of a Canada we don’t often talk about-a collective mental creation of great charm and complexity, hovering precariously somewhere in Video North America, in disguise as the most successful colony in the history of the world. Lost in North America is a personal, idiosyncratic tour of the co …

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Muddling Through

Muddling Through

The Remarkable Story of the Barr Colonists
by Lynne Bowen
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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tagged : post-confederation (1867-)

When two thousand British bank clerks, butchers, housewives, saleswomen, remittance men and ex-Boer War soldiers followed the charismatic but inept Anglican minister, Isaac Barr, to the Canadian prairies in 1903 their rallying cry was "Canada for the British."

Despite the Canadian governmentís expectations and Barrís assurances, however, very few …

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My Father, My Friend

My Father, My Friend

afterword by Susan Mayse, by Arthur Mayse
edition:Paperback
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"Late at night and wakeful, I don't count sheep as some do. I have another approach. I fish a reach of my river, a Vancouver Island stream born in mountain country that drops by way of riffles and pools and freshet-carved bars to a Strait of Georgia forty miles away."

So begins this gentle, humorous, engaging memoir: a heartfelt appreciation of Brit …

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The Moustache

The Moustache

Memories of Greg Curnoe
by George Bowering
edition:Paperback
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tagged : canadian

George Bowering and Greg Curnoe became friends in London, Ontario, in 1966. Bowering was a 30-year-old poet and university student and Curnoe was a 29-year-old painter who had dropped out of art school in Toronto to return to his place of birth. Their art was in its youth, their eyes and ears were wide open and their stomachs could withstand pots a …

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Slow Boat on Rum Row

Slow Boat on Rum Row

by Fraser Miles
edition:Hardcover
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tagged : history

Growing up in BC during the 1920s, young Fraser Miles never knew anything but poverty. There was no social stigma to being poor - most of his neighbours were not much better off - but in his late teens Miles began to look for a way to finance a career in the growing field of radio electronics.

Not long after he was hired as radio operator on the Rut …

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Last Train to Toronto

Last Train to Toronto

A Canadian Rail Odyssey
by Terry Pindell
edition:Paperback
also available: Paperback
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tagged : personal memoirs

Crossing Canada by rail has long been among the travel wonders of the world, but in 1990 government cutbacks forced the remarkable Canadian to make its last run from Vancouver to Toronto. Amid the political controversy that raged during the last years of the route's existence, Terry Pindell covered 18,000 miles of Canadian rails. In this fascinatin …

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Thirteen

Thirteen

A Childhood in Wartime Prague
by Jan Drabek
edition:Paperback
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tagged : historical

Escaping from Communist Czechoslovakia on skis with his family in 1948, Jan Drabek's experience of World War II was anything but ordinary. THIRTEEN follows a young Drabek growing up in tumultuous Prague where Nazi propaganda, clandestine BBC radio broadcasts, conspiratorial talk at home and escapist comedies in the theatres provided an unconvention …

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In the Company of Strangers

In the Company of Strangers

by Mary Meigs
edition:Paperback
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tagged : personal memoirs

Mary Meigs is one of the eight women who portray themselves in the film The Company of Strangers, a “semi-documentary” National Film Board production, released in 1990 to overwhelming critical and popular acclaim. Meigs spent two years writing this extraordinary narrative, which begins as her story of being in the film and unfolds into a gentle …

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A Pioneer Gentlewoman in British Columbia

A Pioneer Gentlewoman in British Columbia

The Recollections of Susan Allison
by Margaret A. Ormsby
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook Hardcover
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age: 22 to 100
Grade: 17
tagged : adventurers & explorers, pre-confederation (to 1867), personal memoirs

In 1860, at the age of fourteen, Susan Louisa Moir left England for British Columbia. After settling initially at Hope, she lived briefly in both Victoria and New Westminster, then B.C.’s two most important settlements. Returning to Hope, she helped her mother open the community’s first school, and in 1868 she married John Fall Allison, riding …

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They Call Me Father

Memoirs of Father Nicolas Coccola
edited by Margaret Whitehead
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook Hardcover
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age: 22 to 100
Grade: 17
tagged : historical, adventurers & explorers, pre-confederation (to 1867), post-confederation (1867-)

In 1857, the French Roman Catholic religious order, the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, began permanent missionary work among the Native peoples of British Columbia. The memoirs of Father Nicolas Coccola, a Corsican-born Oblate who arrived in the province in 1880, reveal the complexity of the work carried out by the ordinary missionary pries …

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The Circus Performers' Bar

The Circus Performers' Bar

by David Arnason
edition:Paperback
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tagged : short stories (single author)

The Circus Performers’ Bar is a second collection of finely crafted stories by David Arnason, written in every conceivable style: the urbane New Yorker story, the fireside chat, the war correspondent’s report, the poignant personal memoir and the hysterical small-town gossip. Hilarious role reversals and role substitutions provide the context t …

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The Medusa Head

The Medusa Head

by Mary Meigs
edition:Paperback
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tagged : personal memoirs

For one year in her life, Mary Meigs and her long-term lover and friend, Marie-Claire Blais, lived in a ménage à trois with the beautiful and powerful “Andrée.” After the end of their stormy three-way relationship, both Marie-Claire and Andrée, who are fiction writers, embodied their memories in novels. The Medusa Head comes from the third …

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Lily Briscoe

Lily Briscoe

A Self Portrait
by Mary Meigs
edition:Paperback
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tagged : personal memoirs

Taking as her alter-ego Lily Briscoe–the painter in Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse–Mary Meigs paints a portrait of herself, her family and her friends in Lily Briscoe: A Self-Portrait, a book that is both autobiography and memoir. In it, she describes the three major decisions of her life: "not to marry, to be an artist" and to listen to he …

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The Fat Woman Next Door Is Pregnant

The Fat Woman Next Door Is Pregnant

by Michel Tremblay, translated by Sheila Fischman
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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tagged : literary

It is the glorious second day of May, 1942. The sun is drawing the damp from earth still heavy with the end of a long Quebec winter, the budding branches of the trees along rue Fabre and in Parc Lafontaine of the Plateau Mont Royal ache to release their leaves into the warm, clear air heralding the approach of summer.

Seven women in this raucous Fra …

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Overland from Canada to British Columbia

By Mr. Thomas McMicking of Queenston, Canada West
edited by Joanne Leduc
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook Hardcover
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age: 22 to 100
Grade: 17
tagged : pre-confederation (to 1867), personal memoirs, adventurers & explorers, expeditions & discoveries

Spurred on by reports of gold in the Cariboo, adventurers from all over the world descended on British Columbia in the mid-1800s. Among them were ambitious easterners who accepted the challenge of the shorter but more arduous overland route across the prairies and the Rockies. One such man determined to find his fortune in the West was Thomas McMi …

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O Time in Your Flight

O Time in Your Flight

by Hubert Evans
edition:Paperback
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This is the memoir/novel that so astonished reviewers in 1979. In it Evans faithfully records his own turn-of-the-century Ontario boyhood through the eyes of a nine year old fictional protagonist, Gilbert Egan.

As one of the most remarkable literary feats by a Canadian, O Time In Your Flight delights more and more readers each year with its technica …

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