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The Promise of Canada: 150 Years-People and Ideas That Have Shaped Our Country Hardcover – Oct 18 2016

4.5 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Strong Is the New Pretty

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1st edition (Oct. 18 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1476784671
  • ISBN-13: 978-1476784670
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 3.6 x 23.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 780 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #48,046 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"This book is a masterpiece. It tells us more about ourselves and our country than any comparable work I know of, accomplishing this by style and wit and unconstrained intelligence all made credible by abundant detail. [...] This is an inexhaustibly interesting book about an inexhaustibly interesting country." (Richard Gwyn)

"Once again, Charlotte Gray helps us better understand who we are as an evolving nationa country for all that will thrive well beyond the next 150 years." (Naheed Nenshi, Mayor of Calgary)

“Charlotte Gray writes of Canada with an immigrant’s passion and an insider’s knowledge. With her lively profiles, provocative ideas, and unabashed love of country, The Promise of Canada is a promise kept.” (Christopher Moore)

“Charlotte Gray’s The Promise of Canada dares to investigate our contradictions and conundrums through the stories of ordinary Canadians who made an extraordinary difference. From our historic past to our post-national present, Gray explores our culture from within the lives we live. This book is a triumph and a tour de force.” (Aritha van Herk)

"Amazing! In weaving her own fascinating story throughout deft and telling profiles of critical Canadians over the past 150 years, Charlotte Gray has succeeded in giving us a remarkable “biography” of her adopted country. She now joins the likes of Pierre Berton, Peter C. Newman and Bruce Hutchison as guardians of the national mirror. A marvelous read." (Roy MacGregor)

“If I had to get Canada a gift for its 150th birthday, this book would be at the top of my list. With the richly told stories of these extraordinary Canadians—men and women from all walks of life—Charlotte Gray tells us what’s extraordinary about Canada itself. It’s a promise that we can see fulfilled around us every day.” (Susan Delacourt)

"I've had a literary crush on Charlotte Gray for years. She's smart, funny, insightful. . . . This fascinating collection of biograpy as history takes us from West Coast art to strong-jawed Mounties, from Margaret Atwood to Preston Manning, with equal aplomb. Wonderful!" (Will Ferguson)

The Promise of Canada is a true feat and it manages to highlight some of our most important stories. Some readers might feel that Gray left out a cause, symbol, or person (for example, there’s nothing on hockey here) but she does a good job of packing in as much in as possible.” (The Globe and Mail)

“Painstakingly researched and thoroughly engaging, The Promise of Canada is a pleasurable read, and, what’s more, it’s edifying.” (The Globe and Mail)

The Promise of Canada: 150 Years – People and Ideas That Have Shaped Our Country, takes a beautiful, slightly different and very successful way of looking at things — by looking at the people, places and stories she feels helped bring us together.” (The Winnipeg Free Press)

About the Author

Charlotte Gray, one of Canada’s pre-eminent biographers and historians, has won many awards for her work, including the prestigious Pierre Berton Award for a body of historical writing, the Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction, the Ottawa Book Award, the Toronto Book Award, and the CAA Birks Family Foundation Award for Biography. Over nine superb biographies, from Mrs. King and Sisters in the Wilderness to The Massey Murder, and masterful books such as The Museum Called Canada and Canada: A Portrait in Letters, she has brought our past to vivid life. Gray is a Member of the Order of Canada and was a panelist on the 2013 edition of CBC Radio’s Canada Reads. She lives in Ottawa.

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