Originally published on January 27th, 2013
I avoided reading this book for the longest time based solely on the title.(Yes, sometimes I do judge a book by its cover.). My loving mother eventually thrust it into my skeptical hands over Christmas, along with a few other books she enjoyed. And of course I’ve loved every single one. Let this be a lesson to you ladies and gentlemen: always listen to my mother. Especially about books.
I don’t want to share any plot details, because that would spoil the surprise and I think this is a book best read when you aren’t quite certain what you are getting yourself into. Canadians are pretty nice, so if you read it in public your house might get egged, but chances are good you won’t get lynched. This book was an eye-opening journey through Canada’s history and you should read it too. Most of the history Ferguson shared was news to me; I had never heard of the Komagata Maru, Captain/Johnny Canuck, or most of the aboriginal history mentioned in the book. Why don’t we cover more of this stuff in high school, instead of doing WWI and WWII for four years in a row? Which is mainly what I remember from high school Social Studies; I realize it’s important but after a while it feels less like learning and more like cud-chewing. Perhaps that would give the coming generations of Canadians a more accurate perception of what Canadian is, instead of relying on stereotypes, rhetoric, cliches, and blind, over-zealous patriotism.