Richard Pope, author of Me n Len: Life in the Haliburton Bush, 1900-1940 and the voyageur epic Superior Illusions, is a recently retired professor of Russian literature and culture at York University and a long-standing member of the Ontario Ornithological Club and the Ontario Field Ornithologists. He and his wife, Felicity, live in Cobourg, Ontario.
Superior Illusions is an epic portrayal of life as experienced on the Voyageur Route from Lachine to the great summer meeting-place at Grand Portage. Drawing on his extensive research, Richard Pope presents a typical young Scot, employed as a clerk by the North West Company. A recent arrival from Scotland, the responsible yet inexperienced Dugald Macleod embarks on his first trip "up country." Neil Broadfootâ€™s original artwork realistically captures both the beauty and the perils of those turbulent times.
"â€¦ a good story, unconventionally told â€¦ it gives the reader a good sense of fur trade life in the period â€¦ filled with accurate, often gripping details â€¦"
- Ramsay Cook, Professor Emeritus, York University
"Richard Popeâ€™s narrative and Neil Broadfootâ€™s illustrations offer a deeper look at both the adventures and the hardships of the lives of those on whom the success of the great fur trading enterprise ultimately depended â€¦ nothing else has so succeeded in giving me a sense of the life of a voyageur as this book."
Kirk Wipper, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto; Founder and Special Advisor, Canadian Canoe Museum
"â€¦ an absolute delight to read â€¦ a gripping tale â€¦ thereâ€™s real suspense throughout the book â€¦ the story is not one that romanticizes the voyageur experience [but rather] an attempt to recreate 1790s voyageur life as it really was."
- Justine Allan, Associate Editor, Voyageur Magazine