A Beckoning War by Matthew Murphy

According to statistics released by the American Veteran’s Administration, U.S. WWII veterans are dying at the rate of 492 per day. The numbers are likely similar for Canadian service personnel. Either way, in a few years there won’t be many veterans left. Perhaps that is why interest in the Second World War seems to be increasing, whether it be in film or book, fact or fictional.  … Continue reading

The Chuck Bowie Interview

Chuck Bowie is the New Brunswick author of three novels, all in the “Sean Donovan: Thief for Hire” series. He has just released Book Three: “Steal it All“. Chuck took a few moments to answer my questions about his influences, where and when his Sean Donovan character was born, and how Book Four is coming along.

Miramichi Reader: Tell us about your background, education, employment, etc. Continue reading

Full Service: Notes From the Rearview Mirror by David Hill

It’s never easy to review a book that is primarily photographs. Photographs are always beautiful, especially if they are of nature and other things that are naturally beautiful in themselves. But old, rusty abandoned cars and gas pumps? Apparently Maine photojournalist David Hill considers them beautiful, enough to scour the highways, byways and back roads of Maine to find these treasures. Full Service: Notes From the Rearview Mirror (2015 Islandport Press) is a beautiful book filled with pictures of, well, junk.… Continue reading

Closer All the Time by Jim Nichols

When you cross the border from New Brunswick into Houlton, Maine you are greeted by a sign that says: “Maine: The Way Life Should Be.” A grand statement perhaps but one difficult to find fault with after you get to know this diverse 23rd state. For the past several years my wife and I have vacationed in Maine from the mountains and lakes in the west to the sunny beaches in the east and we have always enjoyed our visits and the people we have met.… Continue reading

Bear War-den by Vivian Demuth

Inanna Publications always has something different to read, so I often look to them for a book that is a change of pace from the norm. While browsing their website, I noticed Bear War-den (2015) by Vivian Demuth. In the brief description on the Inanna site it stated: “Told in an experimental style that mixes realism and magical realism, and interrupted by photographs and by the voice of a bear, Bear War-den explores themes of personal and ecological loss, trauma, and of women and non-human animals dealing with oppression within a male-dominated, and often paramilitary-like Parks Management system. Continue reading

Moments of Joy by Cecilia Frey

In a recent review, I lamented the fact that the novella in question should have been a novel in order that the story and characters could be more fully formed. With Moments of Joy (Inanna, 2015) Cecelia Frey has created an entire novel from what could easily have been a shorter book. It was a great read and I found the story thoroughly engrossing from start to finish.… Continue reading

Rebel With a Cause: The Doc Nikaido Story by Bretton Loney

As I work in the medical profession, I find books with medical content interesting. However this book has another angle to it that intrigued me: the forced internment of Japanese-Canadians during WWII. Young Harry Nikaido was attending medical school at the University of Toronto in 1942 when Japanese-Canadians living in coastal BC were stripped of all they owned and moved inland, either to interment camps or labour camps.… Continue reading