Flightpaths by Heidi Greco

2, 2017, marked the eightieth year of Amelia Earhart’s disappearance while flying over the Pacific Ocean.  Ms Earhart was not alone; along with her was navigator Fred Noonan.  I was eager to read Flightpaths (2017, Caitlin Press) a structured prose-with-poetry composition by Ms Greco subtitled The Lost Journals of Amelia Earhart. It seemed like a challenging endeavour to take bits and pieces of the famed flyer’s life and, along with some fictional touches, flesh out a theory or two on what really happened that fateful day.… Continue reading

For the Love of It: 60 Years of the Miramichi Folksong Festival by Susan Butler

The Miramichi Folksong Festival has been held continuously for 60 years now, making it the longest standing folk song festival in Canada. Its director (and a performer) of the past 35 years is the irrepressible Susan Butler, a true “Miramichier” if there ever was one. Now, she has compiled the Festival’s history as well as her own in a self-published book entitled For the Love of It: 60 Years of the Miramichi Folksong Festival. Continue reading

Bearing Witness: Journalists, Record Keepers and the 1917 Halifax Explosion by Michael Dupuis

6, 2017, signals the 100th anniversary of the Halifax Explosion, Canada’s worst Maritime tragedy to date. In mere seconds, a large portion of Halifax’s North End and waterfront were obliterated when the damaged munitions ship Mont Blanc exploded, killing 2,000 people and injuring thousands more. Many were left homeless as the force of the blast levelled the poorly-constructed houses, and fires consumed the wooden debris and trapped bodies. … Continue reading

Forty-Niner: The Extraordinary Gold Rush Odyssey of Joseph Goldsborough Bruff by Ken Lizzio

While many North Americans are familiar with the term “Gold Rush of 1849”, they likely have a romantic idea of picturesque covered wagons slowly heading west over the prairie, of bearded miners panning for gold (as the cover depicts), and so on. The reality is quite different, as Forty-Niner: The Extraordinary Gold Rush Odyssey of Joseph Goldsborough Bruff by Ken Lizzio (2017, Countryman Press) informs us.… Continue reading

A Boy From Botwood by Pte. A.W. Manuel

“Generals, colonels, majors, and captains have all written books about the First World War, but in the years that have since come and gone, I have never read or even heard of one that was written by a sergeant, a corporal, or a private, the lowly common front-line foot soldier.”

are the words of Private Arthur.W. Manuel who served in the First World War (or the “Great War” as it was then known) with the Royal Newfoundland Regiment from 1914-1919.… Continue reading

Jack Fitzgerald’s Treasury of Newfoundland Stories, Volume II: Amazing and Strange

Jack Fitzgerald’s Treasury of Newfoundland Stories, Volume II: Amazing and Strange is a substantial collection of tales from times long forgotten. They include yarns of Newfoundland’s people and places, happenings and things, ranging from the extraordinary and remarkable to the bizarre, uncanny and fantastic. Especially appealing is the Christmas section which includes spine-tingling tales of spooks and spectres. These stories have been gathered from archival materials, old newspapers and magazines, and from the oral traditions in communities throughout the province.… Continue reading