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Enchanted Isles: The Southern Gulf Islands [Hardcover]

David A.E. Spalding , Kevin Oke

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Book Description

Oct. 22 2007
Longlisted for the 2007 Victoria Butler Book Prize

The southern Gulf Islands between Nanaimo and Victoria are among British Columbia's greatest scenic treasures, projecting an appeal so powerful as to make nesomanes (island lovers) of the most unromantic souls. Ranging in size from Saltspring (pop. 12,000) to unoccupied D'arcy, they first began to attract European settlers in 1859 and have been home to a special breed of freedom-loving denizen ever since. Author David A.E. Spalding and photographer Kevin Oke are both members of this unique tribe and in this book pay tribute to their chosen region with the sensitivity and insider knowledge only long-time residents can provide.

Brimming with gorgeous colour photographs by Oke, Enchanted Isles begins with a historic overview detailing how the islands served as a favoured hideaway of some of BC's most distinguished eccentrics. Remittance men and other escapees from British stuffiness form one stream of islanders, but there have been many others. A census of Saltspring in 1895 included a Patagonian, Germans, Portuguese, Hawaiians, Americans, Shetlanders and Scandinavians. Today you may expect to find individuals from virtually anywhere in the world.

Enchanted Isles showcases local wildlife, captures local character and history and offers insider tips for visitors. It is a spectacular coffee-table book that shows why the Gulf Islands rank with Whistler and the Pacific Rim as one of the most popular tourist destinations in BC.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Harbour (Oct. 22 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1550174223
  • ISBN-13: 978-1550174229
  • Product Dimensions: 28.4 x 22.6 x 1.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 816 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #330,773 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


"Spalding's unusual textual treatment is as layered and unexpected as the islands themselves. Coffee table books like this are usually read; this one you experience. Somehow the flavour has gone into the mix along with the ingredients; how did they do that? The people, the places and the history all visually unfold on the page. A stunning gift book or to grace your own coffee table."
-Cherie Thiessen, January Magazine (Praise for Enchanted Isles)

About the Author

David Spalding wrote Enchanted Isles: The Southern Gulf Islands, illustrated by photographer Kevin Oke (Harbour, 2007), and The Flavours of Victoria (Orca, 1994) with his wife, Andrea, as well as a guide book to the islands. Andrea and David live on Pender Island, and between them are authors of more than forty books.

Kevin Oke has photographed diverse landscapes and cultures throughout the world with his work appearing in numerous books, magazines and travel guides. Kevin's latest book Enchanted Isles: The Southern Gulf Islands was published by Harbour Publishing in 2007. Kevin has lived on North Pender Island, BC, since 1990 and in the Cowichan Region on Vancouver Island for the past three years, where he works as a freelance photographer and artist.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Showcases their local wildlife, the incredible scenic beauty, and engaging history. Dec 2 2007
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
David Spalding's informed and informative text is superbly embellished with the full color photography of Kevin Oke in "Enchanted Isles: The South Gulf Islands". Offering a true insider's perspective of the lovely southern British Columbia gulf islands found just off the coast between Victoria and Nanaimo, "Enchanted Isles" showcases their local wildlife, the incredible scenic beauty, and engaging history. Ideal for the armchair traveler and very highly recommended reading for the on-site tourist, "Enchanted Isles" truly and fully lives up to its title!
5.0 out of 5 stars Great coffee table book for anyone who loves the water April 28 2013
By Cary Alburn - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I purchased this as a gift, but of course looked at it when it arrived. The Gulf Islands are one of God's gems, and our cruising throughout them have been some of our most enjoyable vacations. This book not only brings back memories but reminds us that we would have to cruise through the Gulf Islands every summer for the rest of our lives, and we still would not see all there is to see.

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