Wednesday, 31 August 2011

A cartoon about John A and George Brown - true and too funny

In Christopher Moore's History News Blog he has Kate Beaton's comic on John A and George Brown. Quill and Quire have a report on her recent winning of the Harvey Award for comics and sequential art. She has done lots of history comics and is originally from Canada - Cape Breton. Check out her website and Chris' note on her.  
My own take on George Brown from The Moment of Our Conceptions: Canada and Me (a manuscript in progress) follows.

Kate Beaton's site:    Scroll down and see the famous photograph and Kate's history notes on the day the picture was taken - Charlottetown, September 1864, many of the Fathers of Confederation hungover as she points out (that's because of their $13,000 worth of champagne they had on their boat).

 -- from The Moment of Our Conceptions: Canada and Me  Anne McDonald

The Fathers of Confederation, twenty-three all together, what a surprise, always thinking there were twelve, like the apostles. All the writers dead and no one left to write for real of the conception of Canada. Canada my religion, Canada my soul.

George Brown

A man of principles – bigot, racist, political idealist. Founder of the Globe, Canada’s national paper now, married at 44 breathing new life into him, making him less crotchety – died of a wound in his leg he didn’t get looked after gotten in a duel – how crotchety is that?

CBC Readers Choice Contest for the Giller Prize - some of the nominations for To the Edge of the Sea

Lovely comments that say what the book is about even better than I have myself. Thanks to all who posted and voted!

Anne McDonald's To the Edge of the Sea is the best book I've read in ages. A thoroughly Canadian novel, it tells the story of Confederation, with John A. Macdonald as one of its central characters. While some of the characters are historical figures, others are fictional. The latter include two brothers, Reggie and Alex, sons of a fisherman, both of whom want more out of life than following in their father's footsteps. Their stories are interwoven with those of John A. Macdonald and Mercy Coles, another historical figure who, in the novel, wants to escape the strictures of Charlottetown high society. The result is a narrative that celebrates thinking differently or unconventionally-the kind of creative thinking that led to Confederation. The four stories are linked not only by coincidence of time and place, but also figuratively, with, for example, Alex's stint as a tightrope artist serving as a metaphor for the balancing act performed by John A. Macdonald during the Confederation negotiations. In his personal life, however, the hard-drinking John A. is not so sure-footed. Beautifully written, To the Edge of the Sea should certainly make it to this year's Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist-and further.   by Florence

In To the Edge of the Sea Anne McDonald has written a gripping story fashioned around our story of confederation. Meticulously researched it gives insight into how we came to be the country that we are as we ride the waves with her characters. With her unique writing style she teaches us our own history that we surprisingly know so little about. It not only deserves the richest Canadian literary prize, it needs to be read by every Canadian student in our schools.   by Carol

You can read all of the nominations on the CBC Readers Choice Page. And stay tuned for the big announcement of the Grand Prize winner of the trip for 2 to the Giller on Friday September 2, and the winner of the Readers Choice on Sept 6!

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Readings, news, voting!! and more

Literary Democracy

The ScotiaBank Giller Prize is adding a Readers Choice Contest through CBC - you can win pretty cool prizes just for entering! You choose a book to vote for and write a sentence or 2 about why you are voting for it. Mine is one of the choices.

The link is below to get to the CBC page with the info and link to voting. The deadline is Aug 28 - you have more chances of winning prizes the sooner you enter though. Perhaps you will consider voting for To the Edge of the Sea by yours truly. Or there are a whole raft of wonderful books - and great prizes.

Much thanks and happy voting!

Burlington Launches! 2 Niagara Escarpment ex-pats, 2 Anne Elizabeths

  Anne (E) Perdue reads from her new short story collection, I'm a Registered Nurse Not a Whore, and Anne (E) McDonald reads from her new novel, To the Edge of the Sea at A Different Drummer Bookstore in downtown Burlington, 531 Locust Street, Thurs Aug 25, 7:00 - 8:30. Books, signing, the whole bit! Come out and celebrate new fiction from the former escarpment ites!

“An interpretation of Canadian history that you won’t want to miss!” Western News

“ a wickedly funny representation of bad things happening to decent people” This Magazine

Farini at Niagara Falls (in 1864 that is) - my latest on Christopher Moore's History News

How different is it from today? Well mind you, Farini was allowed to do what he wanted at Niagara Falls, it was Momorency Falls in Quebec that he was turned down at, or maybe it was because of who he planned to take with him.