Cross Country Checkup

Summer Booklist June 15, 1997

REX MURPHY'S Suggestions:

"Walter Pater: Lover of Strange Souls" by Denis Donoghue (Knopf) -biography

"Who Has Seen the Wind" by W.O. Mitchell (McClelland & Stewart)
-"not a wrong note struck in this book ...full of relaxed affection"

"A Dictionary of Newfoundland English" edited by G.M. Story, W.J. Kerwin and J.D.A. Widdowson (University of Toronto Press)

"Bend For Home: A Memoir" by Dermot Healy (Harvill Press)
-memoir of his growing up in Ireland

ELEANOR WACHTEL'S Suggestions (Host of "Writers & Company"):


"Behind the Scenes of the Museum: A Novel" by Kate Atkinson (McClelland & Stewart) -winner of the Whitbread Award
-about four generations of a family of shopkeepers in Northern England

"Human Croquet" by Kate Atkinson (Saint Martin's Press)

"Roads to Santiago: Detours & Riddles in the Lands & History of Spain" by Cees Nooteboom (Harcourt & Brace) -meditations on Spain

"The Following Story" by Cees Nooteboom (Harcourt & Brace)
-existential, witty, ironic novel by an Dutch author who's a grounded, warmer version of Calvino or Borges.

"In the Dutch Mountains: A Novel" by Cees Nooteboom (Louisiana State University Press)

"Writing Home" collection of writings by Alan Bennett, (Random House)
-the author of "Prick Up Your Ears" and "The Madness of King George"

"Theory of War" by Joan Brady (Random House)
-based on author's grandfather who was sold into slavery at the age of 4 to a U.S. tobacco farm.

"The Wind in the Willows" by Kenneth Grahame (HarperCollins)

"The Volcano Lover" by Susan Sontag (Doubleday)
-about late 18th century Naples, Sir William Hamilton and the affair between Lord Horatio Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton.

MARJORIE BENTLEY'S Suggestions (Editor & Publisher of "Book People"):


"As For Me and My House" by Sinclair Ross (Oxford University Press)
-written by a man from the point of view of a woman. Paints vivid pictures of both geography and people of the Prairies.

"As For Me and My Body" by Keath Fraser (General Publishing)

"All Passion Spent" by Vita Sackville-West (Caroll & Graf/ECW Press)

MICHAEL ENRIGHT'S Suggestions (CBC Radio Host):


"Primary Colors" by anonymous (Joe Klein) (Warner Books) -inside look at the Clinton White House.

"The Prime Minister" by Anthony Trollope (Penguin) -the "Primary Colors" of the 19th Century.

"Son of the Morning Star: Custer to the Little Bighorn" by Evan Connell (Promontory Press)
-story of the Little Bighorn with biography of Custer and details of the West ..."reads like poetry."

CROSS COUNTRY CHECKUP'S CALLERS' Suggestions:


"Poems for the Millennium Vol. 1: The University of California Book of Modern & Postmodern Poetry From Fin-de-Siecle to Negritude" ed. by Jerome Rothenberg and Pierre Joris (University of California Press)

"Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens

"The Piano Man's Daughter" by Timothy Findlay (HarperCollins)

"Robertson Davies: Man of Myth" by Judith Skelton-Grant (Viking)

"Random Passage" by Bernice Morgan (Breakwater Press)
-Irish immigrants landing in Newfoundland

"Millennium" by Philipe Fernandez-Armesto (Doubleday Canada) -history of the last 1,000 years.

"Pilgermann" by Russell Hoban (McClelland & Stewart)

"Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster" by Jon Krakauer (Random House)

"Something Drastic" by Colleen Curran (Goose Lane Editions)
-fiction about a Montreal woman coping after her boyfriend leaves.

"Paddle to the Amazon: The Ultimate 12,000 mile Canoe Adventure" by Don Starkell (McClelland & Stewart)
- a true story about a father and his son and their 12,000 mile canoe trip from Winnipeg south to the Amazon. He also wrote "Paddle to the Arctic"

"The First North American Series" by Kathleen O'Neal Gear and W. Michael Gear (Tor Books/ H.B. Fenn & Co.)
-about native Americans before the arrival of Europeans.

"Glory Field" by Walter Dean Myers (Scholastic Canada)
- history of black family from roots in Africa to family reunion in 1994, 250 years later.

"Notes from a Small Island" by Bill Bryson (Reed Books Canada)
-travelogue of Britain by a very skillful writer

"A Year in the Maine Woods" by Bernd Heinrich (Addison-Wesley)
-about a professor who leaves NYC to live in the Maine woods.

"The Deep End of the Ocean" by Jacquelyn Mitchard (Penguin Viking)
-a young family goes back to Chicago and their 3-year-old disappears. An Oprah Winfrey book club selection.

"To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee (HarperCollins/Warner Books)
-racial tension and justice in small town in the southern USA.

"Seeds of Another Summer: Finding the Spirit of Home in Nature" by Beth Powning (Penguin)
-beautiful photography and reflections on nature. Written by a U.S. expatriate who moves to New Brunswick and finds a new home.

"The Lure of the Labrador Wild" by Dillon Wallace (Breakwater Books)
-true story about two Americans who tried to canoe through Labrador -- one of them died.

"A Woman's Way Through Labrador" by Myrna Hubbard (Breakwater Books)
-written by the wife of the man who died in the previous book.

"The Labrador Fiasco" by Margaret Atwood (Bloomsbury Publishing)
-short, tender book about a woman caring for her father who has suffered a stroke. His obsession is the book, The Lure of the Labrador Wild.

"Once Upon a Tomb: Stories from Canadian Graveyards" by Nancy Millar (Fifth House)
-personal histories of Canadians, both famous and not, picked from graveyards across the country.

"Idoru: A Novel" by William Gibson (Putnam)
-about artificial intelligence by one of Canada's, and the world's, premier science fiction writers.

"Hard Times" by Charles Dickens

"My Family and Other Animals" by Gerald Durrell (Penguin)
-humorous account of author's life with his family and animals in Greece.

"A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th Century" by Barbara W. Tuchman (Ballantine/ Random House)
-about the Black Death in the 14th Century

"All the Fine Young Eagles" by David L. Bashow (Stoddart, 1996)
-personal accounts by Canadian fighter pilots in the Second World War

"The Moor's Last Sigh" by Salmon Rushdie (Knopf)
-richly textured account of life in India for those interested in the partition of the Indian subcontinent.

"Paula" by Isabel Allende (HarperCollins)
-poignant story about a letter the author wrote to her daughter who was in a coma and ultimately died ...weaves in the history of Chile.

"The Outport People" by Claire Mowat (McClelland & Stewart)
-a story about a family in Newfoundland by the wife of Farley Mowat.

"The Island of the Color Blind" by Oliver Sacks (Knopf/Random House)
-more from the author who takes interesting medical case histories and reveals them to be quiet human triumphs.

"Angela's Ashes" by Frank McCourt (HarperCollins)
-sad, heart wrenching, memoir of growing up in poverty in Ireland

"Cottage Country Killers" edited by Victoria Cameron and Audrey Jessup (General Store Publishing House) -collection of mysteries by 18 different female authors

"A Hiker's Guide to Art of the Canadian Rockies" by Lisa Christiansen (Glenbow Museum)
-a visual look at the Rockies by an art curator and hiker who takes you to the same spots painted by well-known painters.

"Life and Death in Shanghai" by Nien Cheng (Random House/Penguin)
-inspiring autobiography by a woman caught in China's Cultural Revolution.

"An Intimate History of Humanity" by Theodore Zeldin (Penguin/Reed Books)

"Middlemarch" by George Eliot (Penguin) -"the only adult author in English"


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