This winter, I spent some time out near Golden, British Columbia, enjoying the quiet. I had a delightful time staying at Il Nido, a bed & breakfast nestled between the Purcell and Rocky Mountains. Apparently, I read a lot of British literature and also drank some wonderful locally roasted coffee. I wish I’d brought another bag of this Purcell Coffee home with me.
Le Morte Darthur was something I’ve been reading on and off for the last two years. I started reading it as research for some of the more surreal passages of the so-called great parking novel I’m working on.
The Wars was an odd choice and not just because it isn’t British (though does take place (briefly) in Britain). A friend of mine re-read it just before Christmas as part of her book challenge (to re-read something she read in high school) and it prompted me to do the same. I remember being in awe of Findley when I first read this, and if I’m being honest, the narrative voice of the researcher was something I was probably trying to capture in the second-person styling of The Greatest Outdoor Show On Earth. Also, I remember loving the double nature of Eugene Taffler. I think Christian Sinclair was born in that moment, even if took another twenty years for him to arrive on the scene. Sinclair also quotes from Look Back In Anger in the scene where he throws a bottle against a garbage can, a moment that seems now almost Taffler-esque.
The CBC has a short interview with Findley talking about The Wars here.
Also, I picked up my copy of Look Back In Anger along with a bunch of other plays and rarities at Bacchus Books in Golden.
BTW, if you’re looking for a reading challenge or some reading inspiration, you can always check out the Book Thug’s Read Harder challenge.
Il Nido Country Inn – a great place for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, or just sitting around reading and writing, as I did.
The Purcell Mountains. A whole lot of nothing from where I stood.