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Roderick Haig-Brown.

Toronto, McClelland and Stewart, c1982.
222pp, cloth, $ 16.95.
ISBN 0-7710-3766-X.

Grades 11 and up.
Reviewed by Joan VanSickle.

Volume 10 Number 4.
1982 November.

A favourite in British Columbia, Haig-Brown built a reputation on his stories of the rugged outdoors. Two earlier books, Woods and River Tales and The Master and his Fish, contain stories that received high acclaim at the time of publication.

Unfortunately, it seems, only two of the pieces in this last book, Writings and Reflections deal with the outdoors in the same affectionate, anecdotal way. The rest of the book contains a smattering of essays, personal reminiscences, and written reactions to issues whose topicality is lapsed.

Although Haig-Brown's concern for the environment is sincere, his essays appear naive because of their datedness. Alone, they have intrinsic stylistic merit; but in context with current issues, they have limited relevance. The other stories are good examples of their genre; but it would appear that the whole book has been assembled from pieces that the Literature & Criticism Roderick Haig-Brown author chose not to include in other volumes. His daughter is the editor of this last book, and so it stands more in loving memory of her father than as a collection of his best work.

The recommendation of this reviewer is, therefore, to consider one of the author's earlier collections of stories for a consistent source of the wood-lore that appealed to his readers over the years.

Joan VanSickle Heaton, Sydenham H. S., Sydenham, ON.
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