A Wholesome Horror: Poorhouses in Nova Scotia by Brenda Thompson

When I first saw the cover of this book, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing: poor houses existed in Canada? While I grew up in a household that used the warning of “being put in the poor house” I didn’t know that it was a real house (by the time I was born, federal unemployment insurance measures were in place). The fact that poor houses (and poor farms) even existed is due to laws passed in the time of Queen Elizabeth I in the sixteenth century.… Continue reading “A Wholesome Horror: Poorhouses in Nova Scotia by Brenda Thompson”

Hope Restored by Robert A. Moran

Bibliophiles like myself are always on the lookout for new books, and as I live far from any bricks and mortar bookstore, I find books by local authors almost anywhere: a drugstore, a coffee shop, even a family restaurant. That’s where I found Robert A. Moran’s Hope Restored: the Ship Prince Victor, its Iconic Figurehead and the Maritime Heritage of St. Martins, New Brunswick (2017, Hawthorne Lane Publishing).Continue reading “Hope Restored by Robert A. Moran”

Looking for Bootstraps: Economic Development in the Maritimes by Donald J. Savoie

In 2006, award-winning author Donald Savoie wrote a seminal book on economic development in the Maritimes: Visiting Grandchildren. A decade later, he marks his return to that subject with Looking for Bootstraps. Concerned about the region’s future, he sought to explore and explain the reasons behind its lack of economic development. The result will spark a much-needed debate about the future of the Maritime provinces.… Continue reading “Looking for Bootstraps: Economic Development in the Maritimes by Donald J. Savoie”

The Trawlermen by Clarence Vautier

Clarence Vautier was born in 1972 in La Poile, Newfoundland. He moved away to attend high school, and after high school, he fished with his father, Clarence Sr., and his brother Raymond for a short time. He later went to work as a deck officer on the Great Lakes, first for P & H Shipping, then for Algoma Central Marine, where he remains today. Clarence Vautier currently resides in St.… Continue reading “The Trawlermen by Clarence Vautier”

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

Desperation: The Queen of Swansea by Gary Collins

Desperation: The Queen of Swansea won a 2017 The Very Best! Book Award for Fictionalized History.

storyteller and prolific author Gary Collins hails from Newfoundland and his previous book, Left to Die concerned the tragic death of 78 seal hunters on an ice floe in 1914. For his eleventh book Desperation: The Queen of Swansea (2016, Flanker Press), Mr Collins has gone back to the year 1867 to interpret another tragic maritime event, the shipwreck of the brig Queen of Swansea on Gull Island and the eventual death of all crew and passengers, either aboard ship or on the barrenness of lonely Gull Island bereft of anything slightly edible or drinkable.… Continue reading “Desperation: The Queen of Swansea by Gary Collins”

Heroes of the Sea: Stories from the Atlantic Blue by Robert C. Parsons

Bestselling author Robert C. Parsons presents more than fifty exciting stories of high-seas adventure, set mainly along the shores of Newfoundland and Labrador in the 1800s and 1900s, these are true stories of men and women who faced the dangerous Atlantic Ocean in the days of sail. The stories are loosely grouped into nine parts such as Unusual, Wreck, Danger, Anxiety, Survival, Abandonment, Court, People, Conflict.… Continue reading “Heroes of the Sea: Stories from the Atlantic Blue by Robert C. Parsons”