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Showing 1 - 16 of 16 items
By Charlotte Gray. 2019
On an island paradise in 1943, Sir Harry Oakes, gold mining tycoon, philanthropist and "richest man in the Empire," was… murdered. The news of his death surged across the English-speaking world, from London, the Imperial centre, to the remote Canadian mining town of Kirkland Lake, in the Northern Ontario bush. The murder became celebrated as "the crime of the century." The layers of mystery deepened as the involvement of Oakes' son-in-law, Count Alfred de Marigny, came quickly to be questioned, as did the odd machinations of the Governor of the Bahamas, the former King Edward VIII. Despite a sensational trial, no murderer was ever convicted. Rumours were unrelenting about Oakes' missing fortune, and fascination with the Oakes story has persisted for decades. Award-winning biographer and popular historian Charlotte Gray explores, for the first time, the life of the man behind the scandal, a man who was both reviled and admired - from his early, hardscrabble days of mining exploration, to his explosion of wealth, to his grandiose gestures of philanthropy. And Gray brings fresh eyes to the bungled investigation and shocking trial in the remote colonial island streets, proposing an overlooked suspect in this long cold case. 2019.
By Jesse Thistle. 2019
Abandoned by his parents as a toddler, Jesse Thistle briefly found himself in the foster-care system with his two brothers,… cut off from all they had known. Eventually the children landed in the home of their paternal grandparents, but their tough-love attitudes meant conflicts became commonplace. And the ghost of Jesse's drug-addicted father haunted the halls of the house and the memories of every family member. Struggling, Jesse succumbed to a self-destructive cycle of drug and alcohol addiction and petty crime, spending more than a decade on and off the streets, often homeless. One day, he finally realized he would die unless he turned his life around. 2019.
By Samra Habib. 2019
Growing up in Pakistan, Samra Habib lacks a blueprint for the life she wants. She has a mother who gave… up everything to be a pious, dutiful wife and an overprotective father who seems to conspire against a life of any adventure. Plus, she has to hide the fact that she's Ahmadi to avoid persecution from religious extremists. As the threats against her family increase, they seek refuge in Canada, where new financial and cultural obstacles await them. When Samra discovers that her mother has arranged her marriage, she must again hide a part of herself--the fun-loving, feminist teenager that has begun to bloom--until she simply can't any longer. So begins a journey of self-discovery that takes her to Tokyo, where she comes to terms with her sexuality, and to a queer-friendly mosque in Toronto, where she returns to her faith in the same neighbourhood where she attended her first drag show. Along the way, she learns that the facets of her identity aren't as incompatible as she was led to believe, and that her people had always been there--the world just wasn't ready for them yet. 2019.
By Ian Hampton. 2018
By Marilyn Elliott, Janet Kitz. 2018
Eric Davidson was a beautiful, fair-haired toddler when the Halifax Explosion struck, killing almost 2,000 people and seriously injuring thousands… of others. Eric lost both eyes-a tragedy that his mother never fully recovered from. Eric, however, was positive and energetic. He also developed a fascination with cars and how they worked, and he later decided, against all likelihood, to become a mechanic. Assisted by his brothers who read to him from manuals, he worked hard, passed examinations, and carved out a decades-long career. Once the subject of a National Film Board documentary, Eric Davidson was, until his death, a much-admired figure in Halifax. Written by his daughter Marilyn, this book gives new insights into the story of the 1917 Halifax Explosion and contains never-before-seen documents and photographs. Winner of the 2019 The Robbie Robertson Dartmouth Book Award (Non-Fiction). 2018.
By Wab Kinew. 2018
By Stella Bowles. 2018
Stella Bowles was a Grade 6 Nova Scotia student when she turned environmental activist to campaign against sewage pipes draining… straight into the LaHave River. This is the inspirational first person account of Stella's Grade 6 science fair project which caught the eyes of the media, the public and government leaders propelling her into the limelight. Stella details her two and a half year fight to clean up the river, winning numerous awards for her environmental activism along the way. She succeeds in shaming three levels of government and rallying supporters into funding a $$15.7 million cleanup. Today, she continues to campaign for cleaner water and demonstrates to other children how to test water quality in their own backyards, and how to take action if they find their water is polluted too. Grades 3-6.
By Dorothy Ellen Palmer. 2019
Born with congenital anomalies in both feet, then called birth defects, Dorothy Ellen Palmer was adopted as a toddler by… a wounded 1950s family who had no idea how to handle the tangled complexities of adoption and disability. From repeated childhood surgeries to an activist awakening at university to decades as a feminist teacher, mom, improv coach and unionist, she tried to hide being different. But now, standing proud with her walker, she's sharing her journey. Navigating abandonment, abuse and ableism, she finds her birth parents and a new chosen family in the disability community. 2019.
Dubbed "the Jesse James of Canada," Norman "Red" Ryan was infamous in the 1920s and '30s until he was gunned… down in an attempted robbery in Sarnia, Ontario. Ernest Hemingway wrote about Ryan's escape from Kingston Penitentiary for the Toronto Star, Morley Callaghan based a novel on him and stories of Ryan and his crimes filled newspapers and airwaves. One of the first Canadians to be granted parole, he was held up by Prime Minister R.B. Bennett as a model of rehabilitation and became a regular guest at Toronto police picnics. All the while, however, Ryan was continuing a crime spree on the side. Jim Brown, filmmaker and CBC Radio host, tells the incredible true story of "Red" Ryan, a larger-than-life criminal whose fame and legend were much encouraged by the media--he was the "Kardashian" of the time--and whose story endures.
By Yasuko Thanh. 2019
Mistakes to Run With chronicles the turbulent early years of Yasuko Thanh's life, from a rough childhood to her teen… years as a sex worker to her emergence as a writer. Growing up in a housing project in Victoria, BC, Thanh rebels against her extremely religious parents. She's an honours student, but also a nascent delinquent, cutting herself and getting arrested for shoplifting. By fifteen her parents have kicked her out. She runs away repeatedly from foster homes, acquiring a taste for drugs and alcohol and learning unlikely lessons about sex, power, and friendship. By the time she enters the world of sex work she feels completely abandoned--by her family, her friends, her school, and society. After a stint in jail at sixteen, she meets her pimp, Jesse, and falls in love. The next chapter of her life takes us from the motel rooms of Victoria to the streets of Vancouver, as Thanh endures further hardship: beatings, arrests, Jesse's crack cocaine addiction, and an unwanted pregnancy. It's the act of writing that ultimately becomes a solace from her suffering--but even as publication and awards bolster her, she remains haunted by her past. 2019.
By Aaron Williams. 2017
An enthralling insider-account of how a fire season unfolds. Experienced firefighter Aaron Williams shares what it's like to work sixteen-hour… days in an apocalyptic landscape, where the smoke is so thick your snot runs black and you need to drink ten litres of water a day. Williams chronicles the seasonal existence of a firefighter, all while examining the wider world of firefighting - interweaving the history, mechanics and politics - as well as the micro-world of the small crew who willingly put their lives on the line. 2017.
By Elizabeth MacLeod. 2019
On April 19, 1907, a hundred thousand people lined up to watch the eighth running of the Boston Marathon. At… the start of the race, more than one hundred runners surged forward, and at the end, Tom Longboat won it in an record-breaking four minutes, forty-six seconds. He became the most famous runner in the world, yet faced scrutiny and criticism of every part of his life, from his revolutionary training techniques to his Indigenous heritage. After the peak of his running career, Tom volunteered for military service in World War I. He survived, and faced further challenges upon his return. But Tom Longboat continued to live his life on his own terms, and his legacy as Canada's foremost distance runner continues to be recognized to this day. Grades K-3. 2019.
By John Ivison. 2019
Canadians are very divided about their chameleon prime minister. Is Justin Trudeau a transformative prime minister, or does he just… play one on television? When he entered politics, he came across as a frivolous person with no fixed principles. Now, he presents himself as a conviction politician. Is he real or phony? What motivated his metamorphosis--belief or opportunism? More prosaically, he appears a man of good intentions but in 2019, he will be judged on results. And those results have been disappointing for many, even in his own party. The ballooning deficit, the Trans Mountain Pipeline, his disastrous trip to India, the carbon tax, and many other miscalculations have done him and his party no favours. And while the Liberals concluded a new trade deal with the United States and Mexico, there are still many Canadians dissatisfied with the terms. As political columnist for the National Post since 2003 and Ottawa bureau chief for Postmedia for the past three years, John Ivison has watched Trudeau evolve as a politician and leader at home and abroad. He first interviewed him in 2006 and has sat down on a number of occasions since. It has been a fascinating transition that has not been fully captured by any writer. This book will trace the palimpsest of the man, now barely visible beneath the talking points, virtue signalling, and polished trappings of office. Ivison concludes that he has always been manipulative--good at understanding the feelings of others and playing on them. It has made him a formidable politician but one who may yet be undone by raising the bar too high; by promising to transform a country that was designed to withstand change. 2019.
By Kelly S. Thompson. 2019
At eighteen years old, Kelly Thompson enlisted in the Canadian Armed Forces. Despite growing up in a military family --… she would, in fact, be a fourth-generation soldier -- she couldn't shake the feeling that she didn't belong. From the moment she arrives for basic training at a Quebec military base, a young woman more interested in writing than weaponry, she quickly realizes that her conception of what being a soldier means, forged from a desire to serve her country after the 9/11 attacks, isn't entirely accurate. A career as a female officer will involve navigating a masculinized culture and coming to grips with her burgeoning feminism. In this compulsively readable memoir, Thompson writes with wit and honesty about her own development as a woman and a soldier, unsparingly highlighting truths about her time in the military. In sharply crafted prose, she chronicles the frequent sexism and misogyny she encounters both in training and later in the workplace, and explores her own feelings of pride and loyalty to the Forces, and a family legacy of PTSD, all while searching for an artistic identity in a career that demands conformity. When she sustains a career-altering injury, Thompson fearlessly re-examines her identity as a soldier. 2019.
By Ami McKay. 2019
The story of Ami McKay's connection to a genetic disorder called Lynch syndrome begins over seventy years before she was… born and long before scientists discovered DNA. In 1895 her great-great aunt, Pauline Gross, a seamstress in Ann Arbor, Michigan, confided to a pathology professor at the local university that she expected to die young, like so many others in her family. Rather than dismiss her fears, the pathologist chose to enlist Pauline in the careful tracking of those in her family tree who had died of cancer. Pauline's premonition proved true--she died at 46--but because of her efforts, her family (who the pathologist dubbed 'Family G') would become the longest and most detailed cancer genealogy ever studied in the world. A century after Pauline's confession, researchers would identify the genetic mutation responsible for the family's woes. Now known as Lynch syndrome, the genetic condition predisposes its carriers to several types of cancer, including colorectal, endometrial, ovarian and pancreatic. In 2001, as a young mother with two sons and a keen interest in survival, Ami McKay was among the first to be tested for Lynch syndrome. She had a feeling she'd test positive: her mother's side of the family was riddled with early deaths and her own mother was being treated for the disease. When the test proved her fears true, she began living in "an unsettling state between wellness and cancer," and she's been there ever since. 2019.
By Sara Quin. 2019
High School is the revelatory and unique coming-of-age story of Sara and Tegan Quin, identical twins from Calgary, Alberta, growing… up in the height of grunge and rave culture in the 90s, well before they became the celebrated musicians and global LGBTQ icons we know today. While grappling with their identity and sexuality, often alone, they also faced academic meltdown, their parents' divorce, and the looming pressure of what might come after high school. Written in alternating chapters from both Tegan's point of view and Sara's, the book is a raw account of the drugs, alcohol, love, music, and friendship they explored in their formative years. A transcendent story of first loves and first songs, it captures the tangle of discordant and parallel memories of two sisters who grew up in distinct ways even as they lived just down the hall from one another. 2019.