Book ReviewPilgrims To Canterbuty
by Marlene Nourbese Philip
If the length of time in attendance is an accurate
inverse guide to a writer's fame, then Edward Said
and Michael Ondaatje were the two biggest names
at the Commonwealth Conference
SIX-YEAR-OLD to mother over the phone on a long distance call:
"Mummy, what are you doing there?"
"Well, I go to a room, sometimes it's a big room and sometimes it's a small room and I listen to people talk, then we talk, then they talk some more, and then we talk some more.
Book ReviewFreedom And Justice
by Carole Corbeil
If we are going to exalt the role of
the writer, then we had better start asking
tougher questions of ourselves
TORONTO: The official theme of the 54th International P.E.N. World Congress, organized by PEN Canada, was "Me Writer: Freedom and Power." It was not so much a theme as a liberal catch-phrase, and only one writer, as far as I could make out, bothered to analyse the assumptions behind "liberal" definitions of freedom.
Book ReviewCast A Cold Eye.
by Rosemary Sullivan
HELEN WEINZWEIG published her first novel, Passing Ceremony, in 1973 at the age of 58. In Canada; she is not the first woman writer of her generation to come late to publication. And when the writer is as good as Weinzweig, one wants to rail at the business of living that must have got in the way of the writing. 'Mere is certainly a compelling story for someone to tell about the silence that has surrounded such women writers.
Book ReviewMonica Hughes
by Norman Sigurdson
LUCK AND PLUCK is the name of an optimistic series of 19th?century children's books by Horatio Alger, but it could also be the title of a biography of Monica Hughes, one' of Canada's most successful writers of books for young people. She has earned an international reputation for her contemporary adventures and science fiction novels, notably the "Isis" series. She is published in both Britain and America and has been translated around the world.
Book ReviewQuestion Period
by I. M. Owen
CANADIAN: Helmut Kallmann, who was the first reader to send me a letter after this column began, writes again to jog my memory: in the August-September issue I remarked that the second-most overused word in Canadian English was concern, and promised to report another time on the first-most. Well, it's Canadian.
Book ReviewA Boatload Of Babies
by Linda Granfield
Captain and Mrs. Figg are lonely in their lighthouse ?
until the babies arrive. Plain Noodles, by Betty Waterton,
is one of the season's rich crop of books for children
LET'S BEGIN this year's Christmas wish list with the three best titles, books that are sure to garner awards later on. These jewels speak to both the adult reader and the child listener. The Name of the Tree (Groundwood, 36 pages, $14.95), by Celia Barker Lottridge, is a retelling of a Bantu tale.
Book ReviewFear Of Fiction
by George Payerle
THIS COULD be subtitled "Me Best and Worst of Bill Gaston." Reading the first, story, "The Forest Path to Malcolm`s," I wondered if Ron Smith of Oolichan had gone off his head. We have the first-person style of a character named Lava, who claims first that he is Malcolm Lowry`s bastard son and second that the cougar of Lowry`s story "The Forest Path to the Spring" was in fact his mother; Lava being the result of the drunken coupling of writer and cougar-woman.
Book ReviewThe Past
WORK CREWS in Europe excavating foundations, dredging channels, and building new roads still come upon bodies from World War I. Coping with the British and Commonwealth share of that grisly harvest has been the work of the Commonwealth, War Graves Commission since its founding in 1915.
Courage Remembered (McClelland & Stewart, 282 pages, $29.95 cloth) is a history of the work of this body
and a guide to the monuments it tends. G.
Book ReviewEnemy Personnel
by Desmond Morton
ONCE WARS END, historians are notoriously indifferent to the surviving veterans. In 1945, it seemed enough to know that the German high command had done its best to allow soldiers to surrender to the Americans. If the Russians admitted to 1.7 million Wehrmacht prisoners, it seemed reasonable to suspect that they were responsible for almost all 1.9 million vanished German soldiers
by Barbara Carey
SEVERAL YEARS AGO, I attended a poetry reading by Paulette Jiles. She was an expressive and entertaining performer, all the more so because the voice of the poet as speaker and the "voice" of the poems on the page seemed perfectly matched. Jiles prefaced one poem, "Sisters," with the remark that, although she often read it in
public, the piece had never been published because she felt it was meant to be heard, not merely read.
Book ReviewPictures From Space
by John Oughton
SEVEN MORE contenders for the Christmas gift book contest have entered the ring: two heavyweights (in ambition as well as size), several promising if slightly flawed middleweights, and a pair of fringe entries likely to join the elimination bouts held on remainder tables.
First up is the bulky Legacy: The Natural History of Ontario (McClelland & Stewart, 416 pages, $75.00 cloth), which is billed as "the most comprehensive natural history book ever published in Canada
Book ReviewAdam And Gabrielle
by Joyce Marshall
SET in an African country that may or may not be Gabon, with alternate sections taking us back to earlier days in Toronto, Barry Callaghan's The Way the Angel Spreads Her Wings (Lester & Orpen Dennys, 296 pages, $22.95 cloth) describes the search of Adam Waters, a photographer employed by a magazine called "one of the best in the world," for Gabrielle, his childhood sweetheart, who fled from him to work in a leper colony.
Book ReviewShaman Of Science
by Barbara Wade Rose
One of the really shocking things about environmentalists, says David Suzuki, is that they're so busy saving the world they don't have any time to spend in nature
WHEN HE APPEARS on television somebody must comb his hair with a rake in order to tame it. In person, David Suzuki may be sitting in a restaurant drinking a beer and tossing back a few shrimp, but his hair is threatening to leave the room.
Book ReviewThe Facts Of Progress
by Marni Jackson
THE AUTHOR of Women and the Chip and Computers on the Job, Heather Menzies, has now addressed the bigger issue behind those two pioneering books. She argues that as we move towards a "homogenized global technological society," the new technology is not just changing the jobs we do or tinkering with the GNP; it is affecting our ability to question these changes, or even to see them as social issues.
Book ReviewTalk -About Whatever You Want
by Joel Yanofsky
MONTREAL: By the time the travelling 54th International PEN Congress rolled into Montreal and set up shop in the Bonaventure Hilton Hotel it was already running out of steam. It was probably inevitable and no fault of the organizers.
Canadian PEN split up into Englishspeaking and French-speaking centres in 1982 and there were obvious and unavoidable political reasons for this congress - the first ever held in Canada - being packed up and moved from Toronto to Montreal
Book ReviewSwept Away
by Merna Summers
THERE ARE some writers who come winging in on you on the first-page and then just never let up. Barbara Gowdy is one of these. She knows how to move a story along, and Failing Angels is an amazing story: full of surprises, and alternating between horror and high comedy. It is rather as if Jayne Anne Phillips and Anne Tyler were holding the same pen.
Failing Angels concerns the family life of five of the most interesting characters to walk the pages of recent fiction.
|A Good Baby |
by Leon Rooke
Mcclelland & Stewart
288 pages $26.95
Book ReviewHigh - Wire Act
by Paul Stuewe
THERE ARE at least two clearly. distinguishable personas producing books under the name of Leon Rooke, and they have each contributed a new title to his bibliography. A Good Baby, a novel, has its roots deep in the modern Southern Gothic tradition that encompasses writers such as William Faulkner and Cormac McCarthy; How I Saved the Province, which consists of a novella and three short stories, spotlights the playful, postmodernist side of Rooke`s literary interests.
Book ReviewAs Natural As Rain
by Bruce Whiteman
POLITICALLY motivated poetry frequently suffers from the self?evident problem that what is effective as a political statement may be bad as poetry, whichever side one is on. All the same, in a world in which numberless regimes take it upon themselves to control what can be said and to treat offenders ruthlessly, the problem of the repression of creative writing has to be a concern of all writers with even a modicum of conscience.
Book ReviewWithin The Law
by Bob Smith
A DOZEN years ago, Warner Communications attempted to market the Rolling Stones' Black and Blue record album with images of a woman saying "I'm black and blue ? and I like it" while holding pictures of Mick Jagger and the rest of the band. Warner's efforts prompted the formation of Women Against Violence Against Women in Los Angeles, and a three?year U.S. boycott was organized ending with the withdrawal of the offending album cover and a statement of good intentions from the record company.
| Halfway Man |
by Wayland Drew
219 pages $15.95
Book ReviewA Parable Of Hope
by Pat Barclay
ACCORDING TO W. I Keith in The Canadian Encyclopedia (1985 edition), Charles G. D. Roberts and Ernest Thompson Seton between them created "the one native Canadian art form," the animal story. However, there are signs that a second "native Canadian art form" has emerged in the writings of Wayland Drew, a
56-year-old high school teacher and increasingly prolific writer in Bracebridge, Ontario.
InterviewsGetting It Right, Oan Clark
' I felt I had a responsibility to the people and
the place ... I don't believe I exploited
anybody or appropriated any territory'
OAN CLARK's The Victory of Geraldine Gull was short?listed for both the W. H. Smith/Books in Canada First Novel Award and the Governor General's Award for Fiction (English) this year; and it won the 1988 Canadian Authors' Association fiction award.
Letters to EditorThe Birth Of Israel
by Sheldon Teitelbaum
JAMES GRAFF notes in your August?September letters column that the Zionists had already conquered Haifa, Tiberius, Safad, Jaffa, and Acre before the Arab armies from neighbouring Egypt, Syria, Transjordan, Lebanon, and Iraq invaded the Jewish state
Letters to EditorA Word To The Converted
by Joan Barfoot
IT SEEMS pretty generally agreed that Canada now has a thriving and mature literature. Two comments in your AugustSeptember issue, however, appear to imply a sadly immature readership for that literature.
In his commentary on Margaret Laurence's Dance on the Earth, Timothy Findley objects to Laurence's criticisms of men, then says that ". . .
Letters to EditorWelcome To The Nineties
by K. Jean Cottam
I AM APPALLED by the review of Rick Salutin's Waiting for Democracy by my fellow historian, Professor Desmond Morton, in your November issue. He says: "When a single issue turns a general election into a referendum, scores of other concerns, from PCBs to child care, will be ignored."
The "single issue" was the most important one Canada has ever faced; all other issues were subsumed in it, as it were.
Letters to EditorThe Routes Of Myth
by Rikki Ducornet
I AM writing in response to Anne Denoon's review of The Fountains of Neptune (AugustSeptember). I have written A book about misogyny; this does not make me, or the book, misogynist. (My previous novel Entering Fire, was narrated by an anti?Semite; clearly my reputation is in grave danger!)
The Fountains of Neptune explores the roots of myth., and the stories of the sailors ? my characters ?reflect their visions of the multiple faces of the ogress.
Letters to EditorMargaret Laurence
by Lyall H. Powers and Ann Arbor
CONGRATULATIONS on featuring Margaret Laurence's last book in your August?September issue. The review of Dance on the Earth by Timothy Findley is sensitive and intelligent and, one supposes, quite what Margaret Laurence would have expected and hoped for. The review is a most sensible appreciation of the memoir and full of food for thought; it is a provocative evaluation.