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House, Douglas.

Edited by Cle Newhook. St. John's, Breakwater Books, 1987. 94pp, paper, ISBN 0-920911-23-4 (cloth) $19.95, 0-920911-21-8 (paper) $9.95. CIP

Grades 7 and up
Reviewed by Catherine R. Cox

Volume 15 Number 4
1987 July

Dr. Douglas House is professor of sociology and research director of the Institute of Social and Economic Research at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Cle Newhook, the editor, was executive administrator of the Ocean Ranger Foundation until December 1985. He is presently executive secretary of the New Democratic Party of Newfoundland and Labrador. Both Dr. House and Mr. Newhook have written books previously.

This book is in reality a production of the Ocean Ranger Foundation, which holds the copyright. It is made up of two parts: the first consists of reminiscences of the wives, mothers, fathers, and sons of four of the men who were lost; the second part consists of various opinions on the reasons for the disaster and how it affected the families and the community.

Because this small book is based on interviews with and reminiscences of family members of those affected by the Ocean Ranger disaster, it is a book filled with emotion. There are no excuses given for the operation of the rig by Mobil Oil, the implication being that their policies were inexcusable. Although blame is put on poor safety practices, this is not an expose" of the disaster nor an account of the events of February 15, 1982. The reader will have to look elsewhere for the story of the Ocean Ranger disaster and the American investigation and Canadian royal commission that followed. This book is more of a sociological study of how the family members dealt with their grief and loss and how they picked up the pieces and went on with their lives.

The implication of the title, But Who Cares Now?, is that the public has forgotten the men who died on the Ocean Ranger and only the families care and remember. If that is what the author believes, (and even if he does not) an account of the events in the form of a chronology at the beginning of the book would have put the stories into perspective and have been helpful to the reader. The book does not have an extensive bibliography and there are no illustrations. There is no index, but the table of contents is informative and the subheadings in the chapters are clearly defined.

But Who Cares Now? would be good supplementary material to a comprehensive account of the disaster, but not a first purchase. It would also be of use in any study of how people deal with the death of a family member. Recommended.

Catherine R. Cox, Moncton, H.S., Moncton, N.B.
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