Saturday, July 25, 2009

Nova Scotia: Visions of the Future

Edited by Lesley Choyce

Nonfiction: Nova Scotia, Energy, Politics, the Future

192 pages, $19.95, 6" x 9" Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-1-897426-07-4

Available in May 2009

Pottersfield Press || Chapters || Amazon

In the spring of 2009, Pottersfield will launch this most insightful book that may set in motion some serious action that can help Nova Scotia live up to its full future potential. The writing is personal, reflective, proactive and thoroughly captivating by more than 30 contributors from many diverse fields of expertise.

In the summer of 2008, Pottersfield publisher Lesley Choyce sent a letter to a select and varied list of Nova Scotians asking them to contribute to a book about this province's future. He invited some of the best minds (and hearts) around the province to present their vision of this possible province of the future. Absolutely anything goes.

Two things prompted this grandiose plan. First, Choyce became a grandfather in May. His daughter Pamela had a boy - Aidan, whose arrival made Choyce think about the world he will inherit and what he will see and experience in his lifetime. Second, while Choyce was away in Yellowknife in June, a forest fire nearly took his house. The flames were not exactly licking the door, but it was headed its way with a strong north wind and a lot of fuel in the form of forests ravaged by Hurricane Juan and clear-cutting. When he got home, he went hiking up into the charred land several times. Once the sadness wore off, he started thinking about renewal... and about the future.

That's when he decided to pull this book together. He invited many Nova Scotians to write anything they wanted to, hoping contriutors would cover environment, technology, immigration, social aspects, urban life, rural life, energy, politics, government, family, economics, forests, the ocean and much more. The bolder the vision, the better. Stories and personal aspects were okay. Controversial ideas were fine. Which future? Anything beyond ten years and up to a thousand.

Some of the contributing writers include Marq deVilliers, Peggy Hope-Simpson, Richard Zurawski, Premier Rodney MacDonald, Budge Wilson, Alan Wilson, Dr. Richard Goldbloom, Carol Bruneau, Tom Gallant, Geoff Regan, Sunyata Choyce, Neal Livingston, Barb Stegemann, Bill Carr, Bob Howse, Ralph Martin, and Stephen Clare among others.

When You Look For Me

By Kevin Bonang

Nonfiction: Biography, The Maritimes

160 pages, $17.95, 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" Paperback
(Includes photographs)

ISBN 978-1-897426-06-7

Available in April 2009

Pottersfield Press || Chapters || Amazon

Here is the true story of a parent's worst nightmare come true. Kevin Bonang's family learns that their oldest daughter, Tiffany Tanner, has suddenly gone missing while kayaking on an inner city canal in the northern industrial city of Hamm, Germany. Kevin and his wife Lisa immediately make the journey from Nova Scotia to Germany to help in the search. Once at the site, the true reality of their daughter's fate becomes obvious. No matter how optimistic local search officials try to be, Kevin and his wife fear the worst.

When You Look For Me takes the reader through 17 days of the massive search, including encounters with police, search dogs, an unkind media but much kinder everyday Germans who share their compassion for Tiffany's parents. After many grim conversations with search officials, the Bonangs begin to realize that they are not able to bring their daughter back home to Nova Scotia alive even though there had been some small glimmer of hope.

The book then chronicles the many different stages of having to eventually bring their deceased daughter home and, in their own way, learn how to say goodbye to her. The author writes in an open and honest way, of learning to cope with seeing his dead daughter and the anguish of visitations, funeral and burial -- and even what they truly believe have been Tiffany's visits home afterward. Kevin speaks eloquently of dealing with the emotions that stem from the grief of losing a child, from the numbness and disbelief to the pain of loss, to the healing that takes place to allow his family to move on. Kevin also describes a visit to his home by the spirit of his departed daughter and how that has helped to give this family comfort and hope.

Kevin Bonang lives in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, where he was born and raised near the many lakes and trails within the city's boundaries. He lives with his wife, Lisa, and two remaining children. A carpenter by trade, Kevin felt compelled to write this, his first book, in memory of his daughter and to remind other grieving parents that they are not alone. This book is a true story of a tragedy but one that ultimately offers a message of hope.

Gold Rush Ghost Towns of Nova Scotia

By Mike Parker

Nonfiction: The Maritimes, History, Mining

176 pages, $21.95, 6 3/4" x 9 3/4" Paperback
(Includes 164 photographs)

ISBN: 978-1-897426-04-3

Available in April 2009

Gold Rush Ghost Towns of Nova Scotia tells the fascinating stories of abandoned communities, not haunted buildings and paranormal encounters, although the occasional resident spirit does make an appearance.

The story of gold mining in Nova Scotia is one of Canada's oldest, yet it is the province's best kept heritage secret. More gold was mined worldwide in the 1800s than during the previous 5,000 years. Since Canada was one of the world's largest gold producers, auriferous tales and legends abound from that era of motherlodes found and fortunes lost. Nova Scotia heralded the first of its three gold rushes 37 years before men braved the Yukon's Chilkoot Pass heading to the Klondike. Adventurers from the world over were drawn to Nova Scotia's burgeoning nineteenth-century gold districts, as was a motley crew of day labourers, farmers, fishermen, ruined mechanics, drunkards and gamblers.

An air of mysticism shrouding ghost towns holds a fascination for historians, social scientists, treasure and relic hunters, geocachers and nostalgia buffs. Mike Parker tells the stories of characters and con men, industry and labour, prosperity and recession. Although abandoned gold mining settlements are the book's central theme, ghost towns built upon coal, iron ore and copper are featured as well. Scores of exhaustively researched images, supported by informative, entertaining text, tell the story of a great heritage that has been nearly erased from our history books.

Born and raised in Bear River, Nova Scotia, Mike Parker has been called Nova Scotia's Storyteller, a reference to the diversity of themes covered in his many books of popular history. The best-selling author has been researching and writing about his native province for more than 20 years. This is his twelfth book. Mike is affiliated with the Gorsebrook Research Institute for Atlantic Canada Studies at Saint Mary's University as a research associate. He is a graduate of Acadia University and a long-time resident of Dartmouth.

Black Snow: A Story of Love and Destruction

By Jon Tattrie


192 pages, $19.95, 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-1-897426-05-0

ISBN-10: 1-897426-05-4

Available in April 2009

Pottersfield Press || Chapters || Amazon

The ship burns in the morning sun, floating lazily in the harbour. Hundreds crowd the dockside to watch. Flaming barrels shoot into the sky and burst like fireworks to cheers. Then the big ship thumps into the pier.

Tommy Joyce looks away. Just back in Halifax from the horrors of the war in Europe, he's lost his appetite for disaster. All he wants is his wife, Evie, and peace. He's worn out from lying, from poisonous jealousy. He knows his wife was unfaithful. He knows the bruises he left on her won't heal. He knows he has to forgive. He hopes he can be forgiven.

The ship blows. Two thousand people are dead and the city is burning. Tommy staggers to his feet, his broken mind scattered between the trenches and this new terror amid the screams of the dying. Thousands dig through the ruins for signs of life as a fierce blizzard smothers the devastated city. Tommy joins the rescue effort, searching hospitals and morgues for his wife, and redemption.

Black Snow is a love story set during the Halifax Explosion. The 1917 disaster was the largest man-made blast the world had ever known, and it cut Halifax off from the rest of the world for the darkest 36 hours in its history. Rich in fact and shocking images, the story sets a blistering pace following one man's search through a ruined city for the love of his life as he confronts the wreckage of his past.

Jon Tattrie is a journalist and writer based in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He freelances for the Chronicle-Herald and Metro. Over several itinerant years, he worked in a shelter for homeless men in Ireland, as a shrine-cleaner in Buddhist monasteries in England and as a vegetarian cook on the Isle of Iona. His first journalistic job was on the Edinburgh Evening News, followed by a stint on Scotland's national newspaper, The Scotsman. His first published work of fiction was an adventure mystery called Midsummer Murder, which appeared in the Halifax Daily News.