Promises to Keep by Genevieve Graham

Promises to Keep won a 2017 The Very Best! Book Award for Historical Fiction.

during the time of the Acadian expulsion in 1755 (“Le grand dérangement”) from what is now Nova Scotia. Promises to Keep (2017, Simon & Schuster) contains a stronger, deeper story than its romantic cover art might suggest. While there is a strong attraction between the Acadian girl Amélie Belliveau and the English army Corporal Connor MacDonnell, there is little time for any romance for the English army is determined to rid their newly acquired territory of the Acadians as soon as possible.… Continue reading

New Children’s Picture Books – Spring 2017

It’s always fun getting children’s picture books sent to the Miramichi Reader for consideration. Recently, three colourful and whimsical picture books came across our desk and I’ll let them speak for themselves. The text below is taken from the publisher’s websites. The first two books are published by Creative Book Publishers, the third by Breakwater Books.

Prepare for adventure on the high seas! Elliot wants to catch the biggest fish that anyone has ever seen.… 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

Escape Hatch by Gerhard P. Bassler

, Newfoundland & Labrador has had a colourful history, from fishing to a strategic WWII port to today’s tourism business. However, a little-known slice of Newfoundland & Labrador (NL) history (outside of the province, that is) is that of Premier Joey Smallwood’s attempt to diversify NL’s industrial base outside of fishing and logging by attracting post-WWII German industries and German immigrants to Canada’s newest province. Smallwood’s plan was an “escape hatch” for German industries fearing what Soviet Russia may have in store, by coming to Canada.… Continue reading

Adventures of a Grenfell Nurse by Rosalie M. Lombard

here is a meme floating around the Internet that states: “Don’t live the same year 75 times over and call it a life”. For at least two years of her substantial life (born in 1927, she is still alive as of this writing), Rosalie Lombard could not be accused of any sort of repetition as she served as a nurse for the Grenfell Mission in St.… Continue reading

Too Much Light for Samuel Gaska by Etienne Beaulieu

t may be just me, but there seems to be a lot of interest in literature coming out of Quebec these days. Whatever the reason, there have been many recent titles worthy of translation in order to reach a wider audience amongst English readers. Too Much Light for Samuel Gaska by Étienne Beaulieu (2016, Quattro Books, and translated by Jonathan Kaplansky) is a fine example of a novella: the story is too involved to be restricted to a short story, but just large enough for a novella.… Continue reading

The Unlikely Redemption of John Alexander MacNeil by Lesley Choyce

Lesley Choyce is an active, prolific author and his latest title The Unlikely Redemption of John Alexander MacNeil (Roseway Publishing, 2017) is bound to be well-received by the reading public. It is the tale of the octogenarian widower John Alex (as he is known to everyone) living in rural Deepvale, Cape Breton where he still sets a place for his deceased wife of thirty years, Eva. He is someone who has always lived his life without caring what anyone else thought of him. We join him at the story's outset where he is considering if he really is losing his mind....

The Fiddlehead Issue No.270 (Winter 2017)

Issue No. 270 of the Fiddlehead literary journal sports an attractive cover with art by Ann Manuel entitled “Blur 1” making you feel that what is contained within is something special. There are works of short fiction by Jasmina Odor, Charlie Fiset, David Clerson (an excerpt from his otherworldly novel Brothers (translated by Katia Grubisic), Darryl Whetter and David Carpenter. There are poems from no less than twelve different poets as well as book reviews.… Continue reading