Alberta has a long-standing reputation for attracting and producing characters with scant respect for the law and even less for public opinion. In his latest collection of short biographies, Brian Brennan, Dave Greber Award winner for freelance writing, looks at the flamboyant, eccentric, and downright bizzare people who established this provincial tradition. People such as:
- Wild Bill Peyto, the legendary mountain man who once let a lynx loose in a saloon to see how quickly the drunks could escape.
- Calgary's notorious prostitute Pearl Miller, who left such an impression with Canadian soldiers in WWII that they responded to the American sign "Remember Pearl Harbour" with "To hell with Pearl Harbour, remember Pearl Miller."
- Fred Percival, the Alberta Rancher who inherited the title Earl of Egmont and decided, after a few years in an English castle, that ranching was the better life.
- Elizabeth "Sweaty Betty" Abbott, an Edmonton slum landlord known for punching out abusive husbands and taking care of their battered wives.
They're a wild and unruly bunch, but Alberta couldn't be prouder of them.