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  • $24.95 | $18.71 | 25% off

    ISBN: 9781772012064 | Paperback

    336 pages | Pub. Date: 20181005
    5.5 W × 8.5 H × 1 D inches
    Backlist | Non-Fiction | Bisac: BIO026000
    Rights: WORLD

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He Speaks Volumes
A Biography of George Bowering
By Rebecca Wigod

This biography of George Bowering, first Canadian Parliamentary Poet Laureate, reveals the intimate, intellectual, and artistic life of one of Canada’s most prolific authors, offering an inside look at the people and events at the centre of the country’s literary and artistic avant-garde from the 1960s to the present.

A distinguished novelist, poet, editor, professor, historian, and tireless supporter of fellow writers, two-time Governor General’s Award winner George Bowering was born in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley. After serving as an aerial photographer in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Bowering earned a BA in English and history and an MA in English at the University of British Columbia, where he became one of the co-founders of the seminal avant-garde poetry magazine TISH. He has taught literature at the University of Calgary, Concordia University, and Simon Fraser University, and he continues to act as a Canadian literary ambassador. Bowering has authored more than one hundred books, including works of poetry, fiction, memoir, criticism, and youth fiction; his writing has also been translated into multiple languages. He has been shortlisted for the Griffin Prize for Poetry, the Stephen Leacock Award for Humour, and the BC National Non-Fiction Award.

Starting in 2011, this legend of Canadian letters allowed former Vancouver Sun book pages editor Rebecca Wigod to interview him more than twenty times, even lending her his extensive diaries. She gives this account of his life and work twenty chapters – Bowering’s preferred length for a book – and structures it in “slices” (chapter titles include “The Varsity Man,” “The Husband,” and “The Sports Fan”), as he might.

As a writer and as a person, Bowering is so prolific and so complicated that without a primer, it’s easy to misunderstand him. But now you have one: He Speaks Volumes will be an indispensable guide to the life, work, and community of this multifaceted writer.

Note: An error in He Speaks Volumes has come to our attention. The credit line on page xv should read: “Margaret Atwood’s foreword was originally commissioned by The Capilano Review for the ‘Bowering’s Books’ issue, TCR 3.24. Reproduced with permission from Curtis Brown Group, Ltd, London, on behalf of Margaret Atwood. Copyright ©️ O.W. Toad 2014. Thanks to The Capilano Review for their kind assistance.”

"[Rebecca Wigod] is a tireless researcher, a fine writer of prose, and a skilled explainer of [George] Bowering’s work, his life, and his singular personality."
—George Fetherling, Georgia Straight

"Wigod has written a valuable account of a rare and gifted personality, while describing the shifting currents of post-war Canadian culture.”
—Judy Stoffman, Literary Review of Canada

"Wigod offers a readable yet compelling window into Bowering’s life and work ... managing to capture his complexity and something of the thrilling yet conversational tone of his work."
—Zane Koss, filling station

"[Wigod] has researched her subject carefully, thoroughly and sympathetically. Her style is lively, fast paced, highly readable.” —Kathy Mezei, BC Booklook

By Rebecca Wigod

Wigod has a bachelor’s degree in German and a master’s in linguistics. Her thirty-three-year career in print journalism began in 1977. She worked briefly at the New Zealand Herald, the Sydney Morning Herald, and Vogue Australia. She wrote features at Victoria’s Times Colonist and then spent twenty-two years at the Vancouver Sun. Best of all was editing its books pages from 2000 to 2010. She had the pleasure of interviewing such writers as Julian Barnes, Oliver Sacks, Helen Dunmore, and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. She first met Bowering in 2005, after he’d finished his term as Canada’s first Parliamentary Poet Laureate. Something about his style and manner piqued her interest.
She is married, lives in Victoria, B.C., and has two grown children.

Read more about Rebecca Wigod

news | 2018-12-07
A new addition to our library: He Speaks Volumes

…wishing a warm welcome to Rebecca Wigod’s He Speaks Volumes: A Biography of George Bowering . George Bowering … access to decades of Bowering’s diaries, He Speaks Volumes is an indispensable guide to the life, work, and … pages from 2000 to 2010. Pick up your copy of He Speaks Volumes today! Note: The credit line on page xv should …