I have now been living in British Columbia for two months, so it is time for an update on my bookish wanderings. In my first post on this topic, I set out a couple of books that I planned to read, a poetry collection and a non-fiction account of the exploration of the Rockies. I since added a work of fiction to round out my reading list.
My first experiences of British Columbia have been quite varied. We arrived in Vancouver and spent a few days there. I am not a city person so I found this quite overwhelming. We have since moved to the Okanagan Valley and settled into our little town and ski resort. I love the snowy mountains surrounding us on all sides and this is really what I expected from Canada.
Without further ado, below is a brief review of each book I read for this challenge:
Romancing the Rockies: Mountaineers, Missionaries, Marilyn & More, by Brian Brennan
This is a really well-researched book that chronicles the early exploration of the Rocky Mountains, as well as legends and lore from the first nations, and subsequent development of the area. I have to admit that some of the stories were a bit bland and uninspiring, but they do serve to explain how various places, peaks and lakes got their current names.
I have bookmarked several places that I would be interested to go and visit and explore further myself. This was my main aim in reading this book, to get some inspiration and ideas for my own exploration of the Rockies and some further context on the history of the area.
My rating: 3/5
The Flicker Tree: Okanagan Poems, by Nancy Holmes
Let me preface this by saying that I am not a fan of poetry. I hardly ever read poetry and it is mostly lost on me. However, I decided to give this collection a try, as it is primarily focused in the part of British Columbia in which I now live. I was hopeful that it could give me a sense of the feeling of the valley and the nature and wildlife to be found there.
Unfortunately, I cannot say that I was particularly moved by any of these poems. But that is probably a reflection on myself not understanding or relating to poetry, rather than on the quality of the work itself.
My rating: 2/5
Five Little Indians, by Michelle Good
This book, on the other hand, totally blew me away. I picked this for my reading British Columbia challenge, as it focuses on a difficult historical period, which is being talked about a lot at the moment. It felt important to understand this part of the history of the country in which I was going to live.
I loved this book and I will be posting a full review, as I cannot do it justice here.
My rating: 5/5
Overall, reading these books achieved what I wanted: I gained an understanding of the area to which I was travelling and I gained some insight into the history and the people. Whilst I am here in Canada, I hope to read more books set in Canada, or written by Canadian authors. Any suggestions or recommendations would be highly appreciated.