Book Reviews

Book suggestions from Citizens for Public Justice, published each summer in the Catalyst.

Book Review: Living on the Land

Living on the Land From the Catalyst, Summer 2017

Living on the Land: Indigenous Women's Understanding of Place
Edited by Nathalie Kermoal and Isabel Altamirano-Jiménez
Athabasca University Press, 2016

Reviewed by Michelle Nieviadomy

Living on the Land is a beautiful and complex collection of perspective, story, knowledge, and wisdom. This book captures the traditional role, depth, and power of the Indigenous women from the Mohawk, Cree, Naskapi, Mayangna, Métis, and Inuit peoples. Not all Indigenous women come from the same narrative. And this book importantly gives each Indigenous woman a distinct voice on where she originates. Her story is meaningful as it is a bridge of knowledge from the ancestral way of being to the modern world in which she lives.

Book Review: Children of the Broken Treaty

ChildrenoftheBrokenTreaty From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

Children of the Broken Treaty: Canada's Lost Promise and One Girl's Dream
By Charlie Angus
University of Regina Press, 2015

Reviewed by Will Postma

Children of the Broken Treaty is a highly readable account of the indigenous young people of James Bay. Angus outlines their struggle for an education equal in quality and funding to that of other Canadian youth.

Book Review: Disarming Conflict

DisarmingConflict From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

Disarming Conflict: Why Peace Cannot Be Won on the Battlefield
By Ernie Regehr
Between the Lines, 2015

Reviewed by Jennifer Wiebe

“Peace, no less than politics, is the art of the possible,” writes Ernie Regehr (O.C.). Regehr is widely respected as a peace researcher, security and disarmament specialist, and co-founder of Project Ploughshares. In this book, he unravels our deeply-entrenched assumptions about both the inevitability and efficacy of military force in resolving conflict.

Book Review: Flight and Freedom

FlightandFreedom From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

Flight and Freedom: Stories of Escape to Canada
By Ratna Omidvar and Dana Wagner
Between the Lines, 2015

Reviewed by Kathryn Teeluck

In Flight and Freedom, Ratna Omidvar and Dana Wagner give a human voice to what has become a political issue. An issue that has been lost in a barrage of incomprehensible statistics and photos of faceless crowds crammed into boats. They weave together a narrative of the common themes faced by many refugees. But the authors still maintain the distinctiveness and uniqueness of each individual’s experience.

Book Review: The Illegal

The Illegal From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

The Illegal
By Lawrence Hill
HarperCollins, 2015

Reviewed by Trixie Ling

In The Illegal, Lawrence Hill brings to light the plight, struggles, and resilience of undocumented refugees. The author of The Book of Negroes uncovers the prejudice, racism, discrimination, and corruption in the immigration and political systems.

Book Review: The Reason You Walk

The Reason you Walk From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

The Reason You Walk: A Memoir
By Wab Kinew
Viking Canada, 2015

Reviewed by Danielle Rowaan

“It is hard to hate someone after you take them as a brother or sister,” writes Wab Kinew in one of the most moving scenes in The Reason You Walk. Kinew’s father, a residential school survivor, is adopting a Catholic archbishop as a brother.

Book Review: Atmosphere of Hope

AtmosphereOfHope From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

Atmosphere of Hope: The Search for Solutions to the Climate Crisis
By Tim Flannery
HarperCollins, 2015

Reviewed by Miriam Mahaffy

Atmosphere of Hope gives us a clear and concise overview of the current climate crisis. Tim Flannery, the Chief Councillor of the Australian Climate Council, wrote this book before the Paris climate negotiations in December 2015. In it, he explains the technological solutions needed to meet our energy needs and reduce carbon emissions.

Book Review: The Ultimate Guide to Green Parenting

Green Parenting From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

The Ultimate Guide to Green Parenting
By Zion Lights
Between the Lines, 2016

Reviewed by Karri Munn-Venn

Full disclosure: I am through the birthing and baby-wearing stages of parenthood. With kids aged 12, ten, and four, I’m looking for a different kind of guidance than what I found in The Ultimate Guide to Green Parenting. Though full of potential—and a few gems of information—this guide is quirky to say the least.

Book Review: The Right to Be Cold

The Right to be Cold From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

The Right to Be Cold: One Woman's Story of Protecting Her Culture, the Arctic and the Whole Planet
By Sheila Watt- Cloutier
Penguin Random House, 2015

Reviewed by Christine Boyle

For decades, environmentalists have worked to rouse people into compassionate action with images of suffering animals and denigrated ecosystems. The images were real, and important, but they only told a portion of the story.

Book Review: Faith and Politics Matters

FaithandPolitics From The Catalyst, Summer 2016

Faith and Politics Matters
Edited by John Milloy
​Novalis, 2015

Reviewed by Joe Gunn

Some Christians grew up believing (with Abraham Kuyper) that “not a square inch of human existence stands apart from the sovereign claims of Christ.” But in John Milloy’s Catholic upbringing, “almost everyone’s parents told them that religion and politics were topics (along with sex) that never made for polite conversation.”


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