Suggested Reading List
A Field Guide to North Atlantic Wildlife
Author: Noble S. Proctor, Patrick J. Lynch (Illustrator)
Description: A comprehensive pocket guide to commonly encountered marine mammals, seabirds and other marine life of Northeastern North America, from North Carolina to Newfoundland and the Canadian Maritimes.
A Traveller's History of Canada
Author: Robert Bothwell
Description: A readable and admirably concise march through Canadian history from prehistory to today, including a timeline.
A Voyage Long and Strange: Rediscovering the New World
Author: Tony Horwitz
Description: What happened in America after Columbus sailed the Ocean Blue? In this latest outing, Tony Horwitz (Blue Latitudes) takes us on a thrilling and eye-opening adventure in Pre-Mayflower America. It's not so much Roanoke, Jamestown and Plymouth that interest him (though they are included too), it’s the places associated with forgotten explorers, many of them Spanish, like Erik the Red (Vinland gets the first chapter), Henry Hudson, Verrazano, De Soto, Cabeza de Vaca, Cortes and Balboa. Horwitz rescues whole chapters of early America from the dustbin of history in this rich mix of wit, scholarship and modern-day adventure.
Author: Wayne Johnston
Description: A memoir and history of the author's family in remote coastal Newfoundland, including his father's days as a codfish-taster.
Bay of Spirits, A Love Story
Author: Farley Mowat
Description: Not just a love story (it includes the tale of Mowat meeting the woman who would become his wife), this is an unforgettable portrait of the last of the outport people and life aboard a Newfoundland coastal steamer.
Birds in Fall
Author: Brad Kessler
Description: One fall night, an innkeeper on a remote island in Nova Scotia watches an airplane plummet to the sea. As the search for survivors envelops the island, the mourning families gather at the inn, waiting for news of those they have lost.
Cod, A Biography of a Fish That Changed the World
Author: Mark Kurlansky
Description: A sparkling extended essay on the cod, looking at the importance of the fish to cuisine and history, as well as to Scandinavian, American and Canadian commerce.
Exploring Nova Scotia
Author: Alison Scott, Dale Dunlop
Description: The revised and updated fifth edition of this popular guide features unique information on attractions, leisure activities, over 400 hidden adventures and accommodations and dining in the province.
Island, The Complete Stories
Author: Alistair MacLeod
Description: Raised in Cape Breton, Alistair MacLeod writes of family, the pull of old Gaelic traditions, love and the landscape and folkways of Nova Scotia in this collection of 16 stories. Winner of the Pen/Malamud Award.
Moon Handbook Atlantic Canada
Author: Mark Morris
Description: A comprehensive guide to New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island. With regional maps and detailed descriptions of St. John's and other points of interest, along with an overview of the people, wildlife and history of the region.
Newfoundland & Labrador Map
Description: This double sided map shows Newfoundland on one side (with St. Pierre et Miquelon and an inset of St. John's) with Labrador on the reverse.
Author: Michael Crummey
Description: A novel of Newfoundland's colonial past. Crummey draws on the history of the early European settlers and the devasting impact on the Beothuk people.
The Atlantic Coast, A Natural History
Author: Harry Thurston
Description: Thurston illuminates the geology, plant and animal life and nature of the Atlantic coast from Newfoundland and Labrador through the Maritime Provinces and the Northeastern United States south to Cape Hatteras in this illustrated, engaging survey.
The Bird Artist
Author: Howard Norman
Description: Memorably set in a remote coastal village in 1911, this vivid book is the tale of an odd local man who murdered the lighthouse keeper. It's as much about human character and motivation as it is about Newfoundland.
The Boat Who Wouldn't Float
Author: Farley Mowat
Description: A laugh-out-loud account of Mowat's determination to refurbish and sail a clunky old boat in the not-always-forgiving waters of Newfoundland.
The Colony of Unrequited Dreams
Author: Wayne Johnston
Description: A probing fictional biography of Joseph Smallwood, first premier of the newly created Atlantic province of Newfoundland. It's a hilarious account of a strange man in an even stranger place.
The Day the World Came to Town, 9/11 In Gander, Newfoundland
Author: Jim Defede
Description: When thirty-eight jetliners bound for the United States were forced to land in Gander, Newfoundland, on September 11, 2001, due to the closing of United States airspace, the citizens of this small community were called upon to come to the aid of more than six thousand displaced travelers.
The Deptford Trilogy
Author: Robertson Davies
Description: An omnibus edition of Fifth Business (1970), The Manticore (1972) and World of Wonders (1975). Noteworthy for their faultless prose, memorable characters and trenchant humor, these novels follow the fate of three youths in Ontario.
The Far Traveler, Voyages of a Viking Woman
Author: Nancy Marie Brown
Description: Brown's intriguing account of the life of the young Viking woman Gudrid sheds light on early Norse settlements in Iceland, Newfoundland and beyond. It's an archaeological mystery, a history of ancient seamanship and a biography all rolled into one.
The Group of Seven and Tom Thomson
Author: David P. Silcox
Description: The much-loved painters of The Group of Seven helped define Canadian identity, creating iconic images of early 20th-century Canada. This glorious, lovingly produced book show-cases nearly 400 paintings, including influential landscapes, lesser-known portraits, gardens and city scenes, all organized geographically.
The Race to the New World, Christopher Columbus, John Cabot, and a Lost History of Discovery
Author: Douglas Hunter
Description: Hunter reveals the interconnected lives of Columbus and fellow Italian explorer-for-hire, Cabot, and the European experience of the New World.
The Shipping News
Author: E. Annie Proulx
Description: An international bestseller that put Newfoundland on the world stage, this lyrical novel conjures the tough life of a recently divorced journalist struggling to get through the day in a remote fishing town.
The Surgeon's Mate
Author: Patrick O'Brian
Description: The seventh book in the Aubrey-Maturin series, with American privateers in hot pursuit across Newfoundland's Grand Banks.
Theatre of Fish, Travels Through Newfoundland and Labrador
Author: John Gimlette
Description: A rollicking account of Gimlette's adventures in Newfoundland and Labrador on the trail of a great-great grandfather. It's a witty tale, soaked in fishy history, myth, lore and incident.
Author: Colum McCann
Description: Colum McCann (Let the Great Wold Spin) traces the derring-do of early aviation, the arc of the lives of the two British airmen, and of four generations of remarkable women in Ireland and America in this stunning novel. Entirely a work of fiction, McCann nonetheless uses real people and real events as a point of departure, with sections on the real British aviators Alcock and Brown and their 1919 flight from Newfoundland to Ireland, Frederick Douglass's emotional Irish journey in 1845 and Senator George Mitchell's efforts on behalf of the 1998 Belfast Agreement. The extended sequence aboard the WW1-era biplane Vickers Vimy through the weather and perils and cold is nothing short of breathtaking. You can see the plane at the London Science Museum.
Vikings, The North Atlantic Saga
Author: William Fitzhugh (Editor), Elisabeth Ward (Editor)
Description: An extensively illustrated volume of Viking culture, history and exploration that focuses especially on voyages to North America. Published in conjunction with a Smithsonian exhibit, it features essays and 400 color photographs.
Whales, Dolphins and Porpoises
Author: Mark Carwardine
Description: In the trademark, graphic Eyewitness style, this sturdy guidebook colorfully describes the world's cetaceans with numerous illustrations, range maps, fluke drawings and a few paragraphs on each species.