Covering Humanity at War

May 15, 2012 9:05 am
Nahlah Ayed Penguin/Jet Belgraver

Nahlah Ayed will never forget the day she looked into the eyes of death. She stood still, the gun pointed at her. The man was ready to shoot her. She stood on a street in Iraq and kept repeating that she was just a journalist, she was just doing her job. A foreign correspondent with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Manitoba-born Ayed says if journalists claim they are not scared to report from war zones – they are lying.

Read more ›

Solar Dance: Genius, Forgery, and the Crisis of Truth in the Modern Age

May 3, 2012 5:40 pm
Screen shot 2012-05-03 at 5.35.01 PM

Today Vincent Van Gogh is everywhere. Prints of the Dutch master’s most famous paintings adorn student dormitories, living rooms and cafes. Why then did a painter exert such a profound influence on our understanding of the 20th century? What accounts for the enormous appeal of his work? These are among the questions that run through Modris Eksteins’s new book, Solar Dance: Genius, Forgery and the Crisis of Truth in the Modern Age.

Read more ›

Book Review: Behind The Bank Counter

May 2, 2012 8:55 am
You Can Bank on That

Brian L. Coventry’s You Can Bank on That: The Early Years, a second sequel to the author’s first book Adopted at Age Four, will give its readers a perspective on how the credit business operates inside and out.

Read more ›

Sin: The Russia You Never Knew

April 24, 2012 9:17 am
Unknown

Sin, has already shaken the Russian literary world with a bold and honest description of post-communist Russia’s past, becoming a national bestseller and earning multiple literary awards.Critics in Russia dubbed Zahar Prilepin as a ‘new Dostoevsky'; in the West, he is compared to Hemingway.

Read more ›

A True Story of Marriage Fraud and Justice Found

April 6, 2012 8:35 am
Screen shot 2012-04-05 at 11.40.28 PM

Lainie Towell’s new book How to Catch an African Chicken – A Canadian Woman’s Outrageous but True Story of Marriage Fraud could be making history. Towell’s ordeal prompted Immigration Minister Jason Kenney to get cracking with new marriage fraud laws.

Read more ›

Book Review – Civilization: The West and the Rest

February 10, 2012 9:23 am
book

The combination of economic stagnation and political paralysis in both America and among European Union member countries makes any book about the fate of the West timely reading. The potential for western civilization’s slow demise is one of the themes of Niall Ferguson’s latest book, Civilization: The West and the Rest.

Read more ›

A Dragon’s Persuasion: Book Review

January 25, 2012 4:30 pm
Arlene Dickinson

Back in November, Arlene Dickinson was in Ottawa to launch her new book, Persuasion: A New Approach to Changing Minds. OLM’s Jennifer Chauhan discusses Dickinson’s new book and provides some perspectives on ‘Persuasion’.

Read more ›

Adrienne Clarkson: Room for All of Us

January 10, 2012 9:29 am
room for all of us

In her latest book, Room for all of Us, Canada’s former Governor General, Adrienne Clarkson, shares her poignant views on immigration, displacement and belonging. Recently, our web editor, Katarina, had the chance to sit down with Ms. Clarkson and discuss the motivation behind her work.

Read more ›

Book Review: Winter ~ Five Windows on the Season

November 24, 2011 4:35 pm
Dec11_Book_Winter

As Adam Gopnik’s book Winter (and this year’s CBC/Massey Lectures) makes clear, winter is at once a season of struggle and joy. Yes winter is a period of sustained darkness and biting cold. But for Gopnik, who was born in Philadelphia but raised in Montreal, few images resonate more strongly than of kids playing hockey on frozen ponds as dusk falls on a cold December day or of scenes of families huddling by the fire, while frost builds on the windows.

Read more ›

Evolutionary History: Uniting History and Biology to Understand Life on Earth By Edmund Russell

September 13, 2011 11:09 am
70099780511985379635Pic

Edmund Russell’s book, Evolutionary History: Uniting History and Biology to Understand Life on Earth explores virtually every large scale human endeavour, and the evolutionary impacts not only on humans but on the natural world.

Read more ›

Elixir: A History of Water and Humankind

July 13, 2011 10:20 am
9781452600390

by Brian Fagan • Bloomsbury Press, 2011, 384 pp. This spring’s flooding of the Assiniboine River in Saskatchewan and Manitoba and the Richelieu River in Quebec has thrust surrounding communities into crisis.

Read more ›

Louis Riel and Gabriel Dumont

May 30, 2011 10:06 am
1164614-gf

After a night spent alone in mid-May 1885, Louis Riel emerged from the wilderness and surrendered to Canadian military. He was the leader of the Métis rebellion that the government of Sir John A. McDonald was intent on crushing.

Read more ›

The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival

March 6, 2011 1:39 am

John Vaillant, Knopf Canada, 2010 • 329pp. The region is Primorye, located in Russia’s Far East. On a frigid day in the dead of winter, a man is returning to his cabin in the remote wilderness with his dog. The region is populated with Amur tigers, which have an awesome […]

Read more ›

The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer

January 6, 2011 4:13 am

Siddhartha Mukherjee • Scribner, Toronto, 2010, 571pp. In 1961, the multi-drug therapy referred to as VAMP initially showed impressive signs of success in treating childhood leukemia. When given to patients, tumours receded, leukemia cells were reduced in the bone marrow and white blood cell counts returned to normal. Within months […]

Read more ›

The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right

May 4, 2010 9:22 am

Medicine, like so many other features of modern life, has become exceedingly complex. This has far-reaching implications, not only for how we understand the world but also how we most effectively meet challenges such as those encountered in a field like medicine. Any attempt to respond to complexity will be necessarily multifaceted. One potentially effective tool is deceptively simple: a checklist. This is Dr. Atul Gawande’s thesis in The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right. The very idea left me wondering if the book would be worth reading. After all, how can checklists help a hospital overwhelmed with desperately sick patients? How can a checklist help a surgeon when performing a delicate surgery?

Read more ›

The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World

March 16, 2010 12:00 am

Wade Davis’s remarkable book,The Wayfinders: Why Ancient Wisdom Matters in the Modern World, is meant, in part, to debunk the antiquated theories of European anthropologists that turned their science into an agent of control over different peoples. Although such theories may seem like relics of Europe’s imperial past, Davis fears their ongoing resonance. Should we not simply allow the accelerated loss of languages that is occurring today? Is this not incontrovertible proof that more dominant cultures are in fact superior to those threatened with extinction? The answer to both questions is an emphatic no, according to Davis.

Read more ›

Leaf through the BIG Book of Canadian Trivia

July 28, 2009 5:46 am

Ottawa author Randy Ray and co-author Mark Kearney of London, Ont. have published their ninth book, The Big Book of Canadian Trivia. The latest Ray-Kearney effort is as a “greatest hits” book that contains the best Canadiana from their previous eight books, plus an astounding amount of new material.

Read more ›