Book Review – The Saturday Night Ghost Club by Craig Davidson

The Saturday Night Ghost Club

The Saturday Night Ghost Club is the latest fiction novel by Canadian author Craig Davidson. Neurosurgeon Jake Baker knows that the brain is a much more complex organ than we realize. He even paints himself as nothing more than a glorified mechanic; he can help treat a physical malady like a tumour, but the deeper workings of the mind and memory are a mystery even to him. In this novel Jake recounts when he was twelve years old living in his home town of Niagara Falls—or Cataract City, as the locals called it—and the summer of the Saturday Night Ghost Club. It was organised by his eccentric uncle Calvin to explore the supposedly haunted places of the city. During this life-changing summer Jake discovers that this club is unearthing something more horrible buried in his uncle’s past, something that has been kept from him all his life.Read More »

Book Review – Wenjack by Joseph Boyden

wenjackcover

Though a rather small, unassuming book that took me a short amount of time to read, Wenjack by Joseph Boyden conveyed a story that will stay with me forever. Its brevity is swallowed by its poignancy, carrying with it a great weight in contrast to its size. This weight comes from the tragic history of displacement, death, abuse, and what Boyden calls “an attempted cultural genocide” suffered by the First Nations, Inuit, and Métis people of Canada. This was suffered at the hands of the Canadian Indian residential school system, which from the 1870s to 1996 had more than 150,000 Indigenous children over seven generations removed from their families with the intention of assimilating them into the dominant Canadian culture.Read More »

Book Review – Sarah Court by Craig Davidson

SarahCourtSmall

This past week I finished reading my first novel of the year; Sarah Court by Craig Davidson. Published in 2010, the book is Davidson’s third novel — excluding those written under a pseudonym. The novel takes place in and around Niagara Falls, Ontario, following five families who all lived on the same block together — Sarah Court. Though not a collection of short stories, it is not a straightforward narrative either. The novel touches upon each family in sequence, never returning to each chapter’s narrator upon completion.Read More »