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Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus More


Elizabeth HayThanks to Alex Knight of Hachette Book Group U.S., I am giving away one print copy of ‘His Whole Life’ by Elizabeth Hay.

Description of His Whole Life by Elizabeth Hay


Starting with something as simple as a boy who wants a dog, His Whole Life takes us into a richly intimate world where everything that matters to him is at risk: family, nature, home.    

At the outset ten-year-old Jim and his Canadian mother and American father are on a journey from New York City to a lake in eastern Ontario during the last hot days of August. What unfolds is a completely enveloping story that spans a few pivotal years of his youth. Moving from city to country, summer to winter, wellbeing to illness, the novel charts the deepening bond between mother and son even as the family comes apart. 

Set in the mid-1990s, when Quebec is on the verge of leaving Canada, this captivating novel is an unconventional coming of age story as only Elizabeth Hay could tell it. It draws readers in with its warmth, wisdom, its vivid sense of place, its searching honesty, and nuanced portrait of the lives of one family and those closest to it. Hay explores the mystery of how members of a family can hurt each other so deeply, and remember those hurts in such detail, yet find openings that shock them with love and forgiveness. This is vintage Elizabeth Hay at the height of her powers.

About Elizabeth HayElizabeth Hay


Elizabeth Hayis the author of the #1 nationally bestselling novel Alone in the Classroom, the Scotiabank Giller Prize-winning novel Late Nights On Air, as well as three other award-winning works of fiction, A Student of WeatherGarbo Laughs, and Small Change. Formerly a radio broadcaster, she spent a number of years in Mexico and New York City before returning to Canada. She lives in Ottawa.

Giveaway of His Whole Life by Elizabeth Hay


This giveaway is open to the U.S. only and ends on December 12, 2015.  Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Beauty of Humanity Movement by Camilla Gibb

Posted by Teddyrose@1 on September 28, 2011
Posted in Books Read in 2011Canadian  | 11 Comments

Set in contemporary Vietnam with flashbacks to 1960’s/70’s communism, Old Man Hung is said to make the best pho (a beef noodle soup)in the city of Hanoi.  However, you have to find him first!  He has to move his cart to different places around the city to keep the police off his tail.  He use to have a space that he rented by between the rent increases and the bribes he had to give the cops, he couldn’t afford it anymore.  He has loyal customers and word spreads like wildfire to the exact location of his cart from day to day.

Old Man Hung is like a father to Binh, who lost his father Dao to a communist work camp.  Old Man Hung is like a grandfather to Bihn’s son, Tu.  Tu is a tour guide.

One day Maggie a Vietnamese woman who grew up in America, shows up at the Pho cart.  She asks Old Man Hung to try to remember everything he can about her father, Ly Van Hai, to help her locate him.  He was an artist during the Ho Chi Minh regime.  Maggie also works for an art museum in Hanoi and hires Tu to take her around on business.
Art, family, relationships, Pho, and communist regimes are all included in The Beauty of Humanity Movement.  It is a beautifully written story with well developed and memorable characters. 
I especially love Old Man Hung.  He is a witty, kind, and intelligent man with great knowledge of human nature.  He is who Bihn and his son, Tu turn to and watch out for.  The Beauty of Humanity Movement is a delight and I didn’t want it to end.  This book is a must read for those who love literary fiction with a splash of foreign history.

5/5

Thanks to Doubleday Canada for this book.  

Did you review this book?  Please leave the link in the comments.


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Copyright 2007-2010: All the posts within this blog were originally posted by Teddy Rose and should not be reproduced without express written permission.
This review is part of the Green Books campaign.Today 200 bloggers take a stand to support books printed in an eco-friendly manner by simultaneously publishing reviews of 200 books printed on recycled or FSC-certified paper. By turning a spotlight on books printed using eco- friendly paper, we hope to raise the awareness of book buyers and encourage everyone to take the environment into consideration when purchasing books.

The campaign is organized for the second time by Eco-Libris, a green company working to make reading more sustainable. We invite you to join the discussion on “green” books and support books printed in an eco-friendly manner! A full list of participating blogs and links to their reviews is available on Eco-Libris website.


This book is green because it was made with ancient-forest friendly paper.

The year was 1845 and Sir John Franklin and his crews on the Terror and the Erebus set sail on a mission to find the Northwest Passage.  Everyone, 129 men ultimately perished on the mission.  On the Proper Use of Stars is the fictionalized story of what happened. 

Francis Crozier was second in command and kept a journal where he wrote day to day about the mission but also about the woman of his dreams, Sophia.  Back in England Lady Jane Franklin and her niece, Sophia kept busy while waiting to hear word from Sir John Franklin.  After three years have passed Lady Jane used everything and everyone at her disposal to convince the Admiralty to send out a search party.  They refused again and again.  

I took me quite awhile to get into the story.  I found the beginning quite dull.  It wasn’t until things started to happen in the story that the pace picked up for me.   This book is translated, so I’m not sure if that could be part of the problem or not.  I did find the writing quite poetic and as the story got going it was very visual.  Ultimately, I warmed up to the story and enjoyed it.

3.5/5

Thanks to The Green Books Campaign for including me and arranging to have the book sent to me.  

If you reviewed this book, please leave a link in the comments and I will post it here.

Copyright 2007-2010: All the posts within this blog were originally posted by Teddy Rose and should not be reproduced without express written permission.