Non-fiction

Category: Non-fiction

“The Old Neighbourhood” – we’ve all got one, don’t we? Someplace that we remember fondly, even though we might be looking at it through rose-coloured nostalgia glasses. I only lived at Queen and Spadina for five years, but man, those five years were intense. This is the neighbourhood where Jack Palace, fictional protagonist of my new crime thriller Yard Dog, hangs his head.

Little did I know four years ago when I began researching a book on the history of reporters on Parliament Hill — before the elections of Justin Trudeau and Donald Trump — that it would be published at the height of a great debate about the future of journalism and the credibility of its practitioners. But as sure as the word “news” follows “fake” these days, as I tour the country promoting Power, Prime Ministers and the Press, interviewers are asking questions that reflect an uncertain public mood about the press. Who to trust? What to believe?

December 5, 2018 — Dundurn Press is thrilled to congratulate author Robert Lewis, whose book Power, Prime Ministers and the Press has been longlisted for the 2019 RBC Taylor Prize!

A deep dive into the history of the parliamentary press in Canada, Lewis paints an intimate portrait of the men and women who have have covered the news in Canada for 150 years, from Confederation to the modern age, and asks the vital question, “Does the free press still matter?

Have you ever wondered what it takes to get a book published?

It all starts with the author. In the case of my book Blue Monday, about the Montreal Expos (and the infamous day in October 1981 when Rick Monday of the Los Angeles Dodgers hit a home run off Expos pitcher Steve Rogers in the ninth inning, giving the Dodgers a berth in the World Series), the journey began in October of 2016. I had initially thought of writing another general Expos history book, but then I decided to zero in on the 1981 team – the only one to make the playoffs in franchise history.

We no longer have any veterans of the First World War still with us, and so we have lost that direct connection with their stories – of the tragedy of war; of the reasons why they enlisted to fight; of the impact of the war on them, their families, and their country. And so it is up to us, a century later, to remember and to learn their stories.

On this hundredth anniversary of the end of the First World War, let us not forget the many artists who served our country. With photography and cinematography in its infancy, artists covered the battlefront creating maps, diagrams, and sketches used to plan strategy. Moreover, their recruitment posters, military portraits, and depictions of battle fields and human suffering were used to publicize Canada’s significant contribution.

 

November 11, 2018 is the 100th Anniversary of Armistice Day, marking the end of the First World War. It was also one hundred years ago that my grandfather’s life was saved on the battlefields of France by his younger brother, Jack.

 

It seems like ancient history now – but I knew my beloved grandfather Charles Light very well, since he lived into my adulthood.

 

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