Book Reviews in December 1995 Issue

Note from Editor
Notes to the Unaccidental Reader - Ain't Got No Culcha
by Norman Doidge
My friend, has one fall month come and gone, since we first met, in the November book review pages? Two watchful readers, only hoping to avert treacherous reading accidents, by reading good reviews. Hoping to avert accidents caused by the timid, enclosed

Word Up Spoken Word in Print
109 pages $19.95
ISBN: 1550137247
Book Review
Loud Mouths - from Homer to Rap
by Karen Shenfeld
I ducked into the derelict back-room space of the Rivoli restaurant in Toronto, one recent wintry eve, for the launch of Word Up. Subdued celebrants nursed bottles of Upper Canada and nibbled herbed foccaccio as six of the anthology's twenty-four poets
Book Review
Circle of Knowledge - The Fall & Rise of the Canadian Encyclopedia CD-ROM
by Matthew Church
We are, we hear almost daily, in mid-spin of a revolution. It is the information revolution. If you choose to believe some soothsayers, it will transform humanity into a better-informed and happier citizenry with all the tools of production, democracy,
Political Philosophy and the Human Soul Essays in Memory of Allan Bloom
320 pages $34.95
ISBN: 0847680592
Book Review
Bloom, Mozart, and Joy
by Robert Fulford
In one of Allan Bloom's personal fantasies he thought of himself embodying the solo part in Mozart's horn concertos. Those four famous pieces, currently so popular that they are available on CD by thirty different soloists, may not be the greatest works
Bankrupt Education The Decline of Liberal Education in Canada
189 pages $40
ISBN: 0802004350
Book Review
A Serious Book
by Richard Myers
It was in the middle of one of my first-year political science classes, two or three years ago. We were talking about national unity, and a student named Michelle suddenly interjected, "I don't see what Quebec has to complain about. They've been treated
Sursum Corda! The Collected Letters of Malcom Lowry
734 pages $49.95
ISBN: 0802007481
Book Review
Epistles & Epiders
by Ted Whittaker
An epigraph by A. S. Byatt to this tome heads straight toward the bull's eye, but falls a bit short. "There are always letters that were destroyed. The letters, usually." Some of Malcolm Lowry's letters are missing from this big bouquet, by accident or
Princess Florecita & the Iron Shoes
by John W. Stewig, Wendy Popp,

40 pages $21.5 TC
ISBN: 0679847758
In a Circle Long Ago A Treasury of Native Lore from North America
by Nancy Van Laan, Lisa Desimini,

128 pages $27.5 TC
ISBN: 0679858075
The Monster from the Swamp Native Legends about Demons, Monsters & Other Creatures
by C. J. Taylor, C. J. Taylor,

32 pages $17.95 TC
ISBN: 0887763618
Princess Prunella & the Purple Peanut
32 pages $16.95
ISBN: 1550137328
Aleta & the Queen
159 pages $29.95
ISBN: 1550374621
Atalanta The Faster Runner in the World
75 pages $24.95
ISBN: 155037463X
Her Kind
192 pages $18.95
ISBN: 1551110423
Truly Grim Tales
144 pages $12.95
ISBN: 1895555671
Book Review
Children & Myths
by Allison Sutherland
Childhood is commonly reckoned to be wasted on the young, and perhaps myths and folk-tales are too. When I was a child they bored me silly. Once I was trapped at someone's cottage one rainy weekend when I was ten, with nothing to read except for
Saturday's Child Memoirs of Canada's First Female Cabinet Minister
179 pages $35
ISBN: 0802007368
Rogue Tory The Life and Legend of John G. Diefenbaker
702 pages $39.95
ISBN: 0921912927
Trumpets & Drums John Diefenbaker on the Campaign Trail
256 pages $19.95
ISBN: 1550544624
Book Review
Last Tango with Dief
by John Pepall
In 1969 and 1970 Denis Smith tried to work with John Diefenbaker on the preparation of his memoirs. His efforts were frustrated. The three volumes of Diefenbaker's banal and unreliable One Canada came out with the assistance of a different amanuensis,
Chretien, Volume I The Will to Win
404 pages $32.95
ISBN: 1895555752
Book Review
Praise, with a Muck-rake
by Scott Disher
If, as the adage says, we deserve our politicians, there is some solace to be had in the fate that awaits them at the hands of their biographers. More often than not, justice prevails in the realm of political biographies: for instance, the great,
Book Review
Letting Go of Anthology Guilt
by Bruce Meyer
Since this is an age of inclusiveness, which places emphasis on rethinking and retooling literary canons on a weekly basis, for whatever reasons (polemical biases and literary trendiness come to mind as culprits), the anthologist's task is difficult. What
Book Review
Fourth Volume of a Footnote
by Donna Orwin
In the late fifties, Joseph Frank was invited to give a series of lectures at Princeton University. He chose as his subject "Existential Themes in Modern Literature", and as historical background he decided to analyse Dostoevsky's Notes from Underground.
Accidental City The Transformation of Toronto
226 pages $26.95
ISBN: 0921912919
Book Review
Accidents Can Happen
by John Ferguson
In an essay published shortly before his suicide in 1940, the German critic Walter Benjamin proposed that Paris be called "the capital of the nineteenth century". So many cultural currents had found their confluence in Paris, Benjamin suggested-so
John Thompson Collected Poems and Translations
288 pages $18.95
ISBN: 0864921458
Book Review
Maudit Mancunian
by Fraser Sutherland
The Tantramar Marsh, a blend of sea and prairie, marks the border of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. The little white college town of Sackville lies on the New Brunswick side. It was to both that a troubled young Mancunian came in 1966 to teach English at
Where Does Kissing End?
129 pages $14.99
ISBN: 1852422777
Book Review
Pawing into the Void
by Christine Slater
There's a rather shameless mainlining of the zeitgeist in Kate Pullinger's novel Where Does Kissing End?, what with its psycho-sexual vampirism, amoral heroine, coolly erotic one-nighters, aimless love interest, and family ties so untenable they rot off
Jacob Two-Two's First Spy Case
by Mordecai Richler, Michael D. Chesworth,

152 pages $0 TC
ISBN: 0374336598
Jacob Two-Two's First Spy Case
144 pages $17.99
ISBN: 0771074723
Book Review
Two-Two's Apprenticeship
by Howard Engel
Perfectly Loathsome Leo Louse is always playing nasty tricks on Jacob Two-Two because, in his distorted view, the kid is a born trouble-maker. Jacob's next-door neighbour, the master spy X. Barnaby Dinglebat, is helping Jacob pay Leo back. Loathsome Leo
Cracked Ice An Insider's Look at the NHL in Turmoil
239 pages $24.99
ISBN: 0075526263
Cracked Ice An Insider's Look at the NHL in Turmoil
by Stan Fischler,

DIANE Publishing Company
239 pages $25 TC
ISBN: 0788153358
Book Review
The Iceman Goeth
by Russell Field
Hockey is disappearing. And it is our national game. In the sports world of the 1990s, the National Hockey League has become big business. With a focus on network television deals and skyrocketing player salaries, what Stan Fischler calls "Canadian hockey
A Gay Man's Everyhomo - R.M. Vaughan speaks with Daniel MacIvor
by R. Vaughan
In 1993 Daniel MacIvor wrote, directed, and starred in a short, viciously funny film entitled Wake Up, Jerk Off. Wearing a simple white tee-shirt with the word FAG stencilled across his chest, MacIvor plays a gay man's Everyhomo, mindlessly rushing from
Letters to Editor
To the Editor
It was good to see Stanley Fogel's review of Linda Hutcheon's Irony's Edge (October). Books in Canada does not publish enough reviews of Canadian literary criticism.
McLuhan, not Atwood!
by Judith Fitzgerald
"The endless reversals or break boundaries passed in the interplay of the structures of bureaucracy and enterprise include the point at which individuals began to be held responsible and accountable for their `private actions'. That was the moment of the
Mr. Bloom
by Robin Roger
Allan Bloom had major accomplishments as a scholar, writer, translator, and social commentator, and he influenced other thinkers. But these concrete achievements are, to my way of thinking, less powerful than his skill as a teacher. This particular talent
Circle of Friends
by George Donaldson
The Pleasure of your Company is Requested by Mr. and Mrs. George Henry Lewes this Sunday between Two o'clock and Five o'clock at their Home, The Priory, Regent's Park, London. Other Guests may include Mr. Anthony Trollope, Mr. George Meredith, Mr. Wilkie
The Chocolate Man A Novel
by Jeremy Fox,

187 pages $16.95 TP
ISBN: 0920953891
First Novels
First Novels - Handicap, Hackles, Hong King, Horror
by Eva Tihanyi
Literature is an opportunity to peer into the minds of other human beings, even if they are fictional. This is certainly true of The Chocolate Man, by Jeremy Fox (Cormorant, 188 pages, $16.95 paper). The novel is narrated by Michael Hopkin, who is
Passage to Lahore A Novel
by Julian Samuel,

232 pages $15.95 CT
ISBN: 1551280248
First Novels
First Novels - Handicap, Hackles, Hong King, Horror
by Eva Tihanyi
In contrast, Julian Samuel's Passage to Lahore (Mercury, 240 pages, $15.95 paper) seems to have been designed to be deliberately provocative and deals much more with issues than with people. It rushes head-on into as many controversial arenas as it
The Invincible
by Jared Mitchell,

432 pages $28.95 CT
ISBN: 189555571X
First Novels
First Novels - Handicap, Hackles, Hong King, Horror
by Eva Tihanyi
Politics and history infuse The Invincible, by Jared Mitchell (Lester, 432 pages, $28.95 cloth), as well, but there the comparison ends. Mitchell focuses on a group of characters in Hong Kong during World War II, follows them from
Bastion Falls
by Susie Moloney,

299 pages $19.95 CT
ISBN: 155013728X
First Novels
First Novels - Handicap, Hackles, Hong King, Horror
by Eva Tihanyi
Striking a very different note, there's Susie Moloney's Bastion Falls (Key Porter, 304 pages, $19.95 paper), a novel in the horror genre. If there were such a thing as a classic Canadian horror fantasy, this would surely be it: People stuck in
The Mud Game A Novel
by Gary Barwin, Stuart Ross,

72 pages $12.5 CT
ISBN: 1551280272
First Novels
First Novels - Handicap, Hackles, Hong King, Horror
by Eva Tihanyi
Not recommended for readers who like their fiction served with character development, general coherence, or a twist of plot, The Mud Game (Mercury, 80 pages, $12.50 paper) comes billed as a "charming, surreal, entertaining novel about the way
At Large
At Large
by Michael Coren
Children's literature: ah, the little Canadian darlings. They sit in a corner, thumbs in mouths, reading of a time and place far away, of other worlds and mythological figures. Of how Lilly the Lesbian Avenger and Andy the
Outlook - Voices in my Head
by Brian Bartlett
Once again he's back in the classroom, trying to teach what's called "creative writing". A babble of internal voices-nagging and skeptical, positive and explanatory-buzz around inside his ears. He chooses two:

A: "Creative writing"


Home First Novel Award Past Winners Subscription Back Issues Timescroll Advertizing Rates
Amazon.ca/Books in Canada Bestsellers List Books in Issue Books in Department About Us