Canada is now 150 years old,
but I will be celebrating the anniversary of Confederation all year long. In celebration of Canada150, Parks Canada has offered its Discovery Pass where you can have unlimited visits to its national sites. I hope these books inspire you to visit some of the places mentioned within its pages during Canada150.
The Lightkeeper's Daughters
The Lightkeeper's Daughters is written by Thunder Bay resident Jean E. Pendziwol, who spent much of her childhood on her family's sailboat, exploring the islands and bays of Lake Superior. And you can tell: Pendziwol not only loves the largest of the great lakes, but she also respects it.
In her author's note about some of the liberties she takes with her story, Pendziwol writes: “Lake Superior appears in full iconic truth; temperamental, beautiful, vast, magnificent, and moody.”
The LightKeeper's Daughters ($26.99, HarperCollins) is a story about Elizabeth, whose mind is sharp, but her eyes no longer see. She fills the void with music and memories of her family, a past that becomes present when her late father's journals are found amid the ruins of an old shipwreck.
With the help of Morgan, a teenager performing community service, Elizabeth goes through the diaries. Entry by entry, the pair are drawn deep into to Porphyry Island on Lake Superior, where Elizabeth’s father manned the lighthouse 70 years before.
The Lightkeeper's Daughters pulled me in from the moment I opened the book, with each chapter telling you whose perspective you were reading including Arnie Richardson, who describes Sleeping Giant Provincial Park in Thunder Bay this way: “It is a mystical place, this peninsula, jutting into Lake Superior; chiseled rocky cliffs and worn ridges, mysteriously carved by wind and rain and time, take the form of a giant slumbering in a cradle of icy gray water. Legends speak of an Ojibwe god, Nanibijou, lying down at the entrance to Thunder Bay, his magnificent form turning to stone, eternally protecting rich silver deposits.”
The characters are wonderful, even those who played small parts, and the story is amazing with a mystery I didn't solve. The descriptions, particularly of the lake, are beautiful and you come to know this part of Canada's north a little better.
A Sea Glass Journey Ebb and Flow
A Sea Glass Journey Ebb and Flow by Teri Hall ($24.95, Nimbus Publishing) is the book that made me want to visit the ocean and hunt for sea glass, which I did with my family last year. We spent a couple of weeks searching for sea glass.
Sea Glass Journey, with a foreword by Chef Michael Smith, offers a look what sea glass is and the life it takes on afterward. The pictures make me happy and wish I was again hunting for treasures of the sea this summer.
“Patience, patience, patience, is what the sea teaches. Patience and faith. One should lie empty, open, choices as beach – waiting for a gift from the sea.”
~ Gift from the Sea, Anne Morrow Lindbergh
This is That Travel Guide to Canada
“We set out to write the most thorough, comprehensive, and accurate travel guide ever published about Canada. After reading this book, we believe you'll agree – we tried,” wrote the pair in the introduction.
I then should have known This is That would offer more jokes than stories about Canada and its people, more teasing to those who don't know us than practical ideas of the best places to see.
I will give the book this, I will have to check out the destinations mentioned in the book simply to figure out if anything said is true.
Happy Canada150, everyone! Now get out and explore!