ARTICLES BY Melora Koepke

Literary Comics at Blue Met

The Blue Metropolis literary organizers really know how to vary the program so there’s something for everybody in the community of readers. The festival welcomes famous and emerging writers from Quebec, Canada, and from all over the world. There are lots of happenings for students and benefits and activities to promote literacy ... read more ››

March Empowers Women in Vancouver

Valentine’s Day is a special occasion down here on the mean streets of Vancouver. For the last 12 years, various women in the Downtown Eastside, Vancouver’s skid row community ravaged by drugs, violence and poverty, have organized the Womens’ Memorial March in order to remember the women who have gone ... read more ››

The Doq’s Ear – Final Yarn

“This is a story that will make you believe in God.” A tall order, to be sure, and a risky pivot to hinge a novel on. God, after all, isn’t usually a selling point for stories for big-city readers. But it worked. Maybe it’s because Life of Pi, the third ... read more ››

“The Last Crossing” by Guy Vanderhaeghe

If Guy Vanderhaeghe built houses instead of stories, he would be the kind of carpenter who did everything by hand, who fashioned every joint with a chisel and a knife, because details matter. And apparently they matter to lots of readers, because Vanderhaeghe is a bestselling writer across Canada. His ... read more ››

Where is Here?: Canada’s Maps and the Stories They Tell

“Because [I am] afraid of drowning.” This was the answer an Inuit elder gave when asked why he was so skilled at reading the weather. Like many of his people, he became skilled at reading the signs in the clouds and the changing bite and smell of a cold front. ... read more ››

The Spooky Story of Halloween

Two thousand long years ago, the Celtic tribes of England, Ireland and France started their New Year at the end of their harvest and at the beginning of the cold winter months. In these parts of the old world, the new calendar year started on November 1. Their New Year’s ... read more ››

the Dogs Ear

The Pursuit of Oblivion: A Global History of Narcotics 1500-2000 By Richard Davenport-Hines 466pp, Weidenfeld and Nicolson Cocaine: An Unauthorized Biography By Dominic Streatfield 510 pp, St Martin’s Press The Pursuit of Oblivion is British freelance scholar Richard Davenport-Hines’ prodigious approach to what is probably, after sex and war, humankind’s ... read more ››

the Dogs Ear

Arrivals: Stories from the History of Ontario, is a book most people didn’t know needed to be written. Many people probably couldn’t imagine anything more boring. But John Bentley Mays, a well-known Toronto newspaper columnist and author, has a different perspective. Originally from one of the American South’s largest plantation ... read more ››

Back-to-school textbook The Nation’s cheat sheet for living large on small budgets in Montreal

More than any other city in North America, Montreal is a friendly and fun-loving place for people on any budget. With a very diverse population of poor people and its teeming masses of students, this exciting metropolis doesn’t shut out those with thin wallets. It’s possible to survive, thrive and ... read more ››

Cowboys and Indians Revising genocide through Hollywood’s eyes

If it’s true, as they say, that history is written by the winners, then the movie Western is the most compelling American story ever told: How the West was won. Of course, what the Western really made famous was a series of oppositions still in play today: the lone cowboy conquering ... read more ››

Making art from trees: McCord Museum presents a living history of Native crafts

For thousands of years, the trees that crowd the eastern woodlands of North America have provided Native peoples with the raw materials and inspiration to fashion beautiful and useful tools out of bark and wood. Gifts of the Forest: Native Traditions in Wood, a new exhibit at Montreal’s McCord Museum, ... read more ››

BC voters support/reject treaty referendum questions

Depending on who’s doing the talking, British Columbians have either given a strong vote of confidence in their provincial government’s referendum on treatymaking, or overwhelmingly disowned Victoria’s divide-and-conquer tactics. BC Premier Gordon Campbell trumpeted the results, despite a low 35 per cent response rate to the mail-in ballot. “The government is ... read more ››

The Dogs Ear

Oskiniko Larry Loyie’s dream of becoming an author has been realized several times over, but he hasn’t stopped with his own success. For Loyie, the process of writing is a powerful force for healing and achieving a sense of self-esteem and power – an important part of his job consists ... read more ››