Friday, March 28, 2014

Book Review - Country Roads: Memoirs From Rural Canada edited by Pam Chamberlain

 “My mother worked as hard as anyone I’ve ever known, and the older I get, the more I admire her.  Her seven sons – though generally well behaved – could be a handful, and we liked to tease her.  One of my brothers learned how to hypnotize chickens, and we found that if we worked fast enough, we could hypnotize the whole flock of them.  Mom would come outside to the sight of a yard full of birds spread out on their backs, dazed and staring at the sky.  Then she’d come after us with a broom, hollering.  Luckily, we usually occupied our spare time with other activities, mostly hockey.”
-          Brent Sutter

Title: Country Roads: Memoirs from Rural Canada
Author:  Edited by Pam Chamberlain
Publisher: Nimbus Publishing Limited 2012

Many of us here on the prairies can relate to country living.  Whether we grew up on a farm, had grandparents or relatives that owned a farm or simply had friends that would invite you out to their ranch to go horseback riding or ski-dooing, we had some sort of access to country living.  

This collection, edited by Pam Chamberlain boasts contributions from thirty-four authors including Brent Sutter, Pamela Wallin, George Fox, Gordon Tootoosis and Marianne Ackerman.

Divided into three sections - Home, Journeys and Departures – each memoir recalls fond memories coupled with hard times as the authors tell of their personal experiences growing up on the farm.  Some leave to return, some leave never realizing that they would never be able to return.

While I was gone, Somewhere didn’t wait for me.  The house was moved.  The barn imploded.  The land sold out, went commercial, and became a golf course, a flood diversion, a greenhouse, a traitor.”
-          Jill Sexsmith  

Whether you are sitting on your deck in the big city or on the front porch on your own farm, this book is an easy and fun summer read.

PS – I wonder if the chicken on the cover belonged to Brent Sutter’s mother…poor thing.