Monday, September 7, 2015

A Good Book

                                Flying with Amelia by Anne DeGrace

 I'll have to retract my last post about the difficulties in finding books I enjoy reading, because this one caught and held my attention right from the start.   The title of this book isn't reflective of the topic nor is the front cover which would seem to go against popular advice to authors.   The 'Amelia' referred to is Amelia Earhart, the famous woman pilot who  amazed the world.   But Amelia is only mentioned in passing as a fantasy of a female character.

The book traces key events in Canadian history starting with emigrants from Ireland escaping the potato famine.  Descendants of two families are featured, for example, during World War I and then later the Great Depression in stand-alone short story style.  I especially liked the earlier stories.

The first story brought me back to my visit to Dublin last summer which included a tour of a famine ship docked on the banks of the Liffey River, which flows through Dublin.   There is an arresting series of cast iron statues depicting the malnourished people and a skinny dog departing for hopefully a better life.

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