Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Some Day the Sun Will Shine and Have Not Will Be No More by A. Brian Peckford

Published by Flanker Press 
A very well-written memoir of the life of A. Brian Peckford, Newfoundland's third Premier from the time Newfoundland was still separate from the Confederation of Canada (Newfoundland and Labrador became a province of Canada in 1949). He has a humility about him along with empathy, something he was born with but apparently seems to have honed in his work both in teaching and social work. He saw the hardships facing his people and never lost sight of that. But he can also be a force of reckoning and is fearless when it comes to politics. Never losing sight of his main goals, to help his province grow and flourish, bring his people out of their poverty and fight for their rights to their own resources. There are many times his earlier careers prove helpful, aside from the fact that in his earlier positions he made it a point to meet and sincerely assist these people to get the help they needed, one way or another.
Once Brian Peckford gets into his Premier years, his passion really shines through. As a social worker in the past, he came to be known throughout Newfoundland and Labrador and easily made the conversion to political door-knocking in every tiny settlement, isolated fisherman's cottage, town, and city. He made it a point to get to know the people personally. I wouldn't hesitate to guess that he has probably been one of the best and most honest Provincial Premiers anywhere in Canada. His foresight, his quick and decisive actions, are the signs of a truly caring man who acts almost as fast as he thinks.
Brian's writing is as powerful and clear as his oration. It is not full of convolution, but precise. What he has to say is forthright, clear, and definitive. The latter part of the book, with his multiple attempts at interaction with the federal government and non-action from the federal government, is as suspenseful and full of twists and turns as any piece of fictitious mystery would be. But this is real life, not only the memoir of Brian Peckford, but of Newfoundland and Labrador, and the struggle to truly be a "have" rather than "have-not" province, to have its own say in the management of its own resources. The book contains an Epilogue with documentation and notes, also a copy of the Atlantic Accord Memorandum of Agreement. And the sun did shine. An amazing story of an amazing man and his supporters, I definitely recommend this book.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Black Water (Book 2 in the Pat Tierney Mystery Series) by Rosemary McCracken

Published by Imajin Books
Reviewed from ebook

I was hooked in the Prologue, and I knew right then that I would enjoy this book. The characters are well-formed, with faults and strengths as real people have. The action begins quite quickly, while Pat Tierney is still reeling from the disclosure that her daughter Tracy has 'come out' and moved in with her partner Jennifer Collins, or Jamie as she chooses to be known. Now suddenly the whole world seems to have turned upside down as the police call to ask for Tracy, and because she loaned her car to Jamie, they are both immediately considered 'persons of interest' in a murder case in Braeloch, some miles north of where they live in Toronto.

To make matters worse, Jamie has disappeared but Tracy's car is still at the scene. Because Tracy has been told by police she can't leave town, Pat finds herself in Braeloch, meeting Jamie's mother Veronica, a good thing because after talking with her, Pat finds she is now able to put Tracy's life choice into perspective. But she is unable to locate Jamie and fears something has either scared her off or something has happened to her. She is absolutely sure Jamie is not a murderer. This is bolstered after a chance meeting with an old friend and confidante, Sister Celia, who knows Jamie and her family and also knows the victim well as an employee at the Church.

Pat, a financial advisor, comes up with a plan thanks to her employer at Norris Cassidy,  and positions herself at the newly opened branch in the town of Braeloch. So begins the search and chase, the sleuthing to find a killer...and hopefully Jamie. Murder is not the only thing Pat will find taking her attention. When her family is threatened, it's a whole new ballgame and she finds herself on the run with her kids. Will she be able to work out the numerous oddities that turn up? Rosemary McCracken's writing is descriptive, the camaraderie amongst many townspeople brings Pat comfort and some of the unusual characters bring some humor and pathos to the mix. An interesting storyline with surprises in store for everyone.