Sunday, August 27, 2017

Somewhere In Ireland a Village Is Missing an Idiot

David Feherty. Somewhere In Ireland a Village Is Missing an Idiot. Ruggedland, 2003.

A friend bought me this book because he knew of my passion for Ireland. A happy accident, because there is almost nothing about Ireland except the personality of the writer. But there are unexpected laugh-out-louds. For the golf-challenged like me, the fun is in the language, the hyperbole, the irreverence, the descriptions, and the imagination. Who would dream of describing a bout of intestinal turbulence as if it were a science-fiction plot? 

David Feherty is a former professional golfer turned television commentator and magazine writer.



Friday, August 18, 2017

Between the Acts

August 12, 2017

Virginia Woolf. Between the Acts. Penguin, 1992 (1941).

Found this treasure at Baker's Books in Hope last week. This is Woolf's last novel, about a day in June in 1939 in a small community as England anticipates another war with Germany. Where does the violence come from? And what would happen if history were written (as the playwright does here) without reference to military and violent responses? What if we were to turn the mirrors on to the audience? What could you do to stop it? 
We know from history that Woolf despaired. 


Saturday, August 5, 2017

God Is Alive Magic Is Afoot

Leonard Cohen. God Is Alive Magic Is Afoot: from the novel Beautiful Losers. Stoddart, 2000. Illustrations by Sarah Perkins & Ian Jackson. 

An absolutely beautiful gift, art inspired by this excerpt made famous by Buffy St Marie from Cohen's experimental novel. 


Abattoir Blues

Peter Robinson. Abattoir Blues: An Inspector Banks Novel. McClelland & Stewart, 2014.

I am a great fan of mystery crime fiction as the many listings for Rebus and Gamache testify. Inspector Banks too, by Canadian writer Peter Robinson, yet always set in or near Yorkshire, is another favourite. I especially enjoy the television adaptations, the actor who plays Banks. (Sorry I cannot remember his name but he used to play a priest in Ballykissangel.)
In Abattoir Blues, the plot, instigated by the theft of an expensive tractor, leads to a missing person, and an accident on a lonely mountain road. Who knew there were caves and blizzards in Yorkshire? 

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Dropped Threads

Carol Shields & Marjorie Anderson, Eds. Dropped Threads: What We Aren't Told. Vintage, 2001.

A most interesting and entertaining collection of essays by mostly Canadian female writers on topics of their choice around the theme of "things we weren't told." I was most attracted to Martha Brooks descriptions of ecstasy and Sharon Butala's disclosure of the esp-like ability to "see" signs which often go unnoticed. I especially enjoyed Lorna Crozier's story about dancing with her father.