This book covers the history of a small parcel of land in the center of the City of Ottawa – Le Breton Flats. The author begins his story billions of years ago and quickly goes through the various geological time periods, always keeping this location in mind. Within a few pages, he reaches the post-Columbian period in which exploration, conflicts and settlements are presented in a whirlwind tour. Finally, much more space is devoted to the past two centuries: establishing communities, businesses and life in general on the Flats and its surroundings. Throughout the discussions about human involvement, the author ensures that the interactions between the First Nations people and the new settlers are well represented.
As a resident of the Ottawa area, I found the book generally interesting, particularly because, at this writing, serious discussions are underway (again) about massively developing Le Breton Flats in such a way as to satisfy the needs of the population – as much as possible. On the down side of this book, I believe that several well-captioned photos and diagrams appropriately distributed throughout the text would have given much more life to such a fascinating story.