A Canadian book blog: Publishing, marketing, books and technology from a Canadian perspective

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Book Review: The Tower, the Zoo and the Tortoise by Julia Stuart


The Tower, the Zoo and the Tortoise by Julia Stuart is a strange but lovely book about what happens at the Tower of London after the tourists go home.

I did not know that the employees of the Tower of London — the Beefeaters (or more correctly, the Yeoman Wardens) — their families, the reverend, landlady of the pub and Ravenmaster actually live within the walled village of the Tower. No one is allowed in or out between midnight and 6 am.

The main characters are Yeoman Warden Balthazar Jones and his Grecian wife Hebe Jones who have lost their son Milo and are adrift in their grief. Hebe works at the London Underground Lost Property Office, which supplies no end of curios to the storyline. Balthazar, through strange circumstances, becomes the Head of the Royal Menagerie. In his care are 4 giraffes, a raft of penguins, a stinky zorilla, an albatross, some cheeky monkeys, and among others, a stolen bearded pig.

Not quite a modern-day Greek tragedy, this novel is full of comedic drama, human vulnerabilities, follies and divine acts. 



Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Tap Talk at the VPL

Meet the New Tap Dance Collection at the VPL! A program open to all ages Thursday October 147:00 pm-9:00 pm Free


Alice MacKay Room, Lower Level Central Library350 West Georgia Street At this interactive event presented by the West Coast Tap Dance Collective, there will be live presentations and short demonstrations of some of the material covered in the new collection of tap DVDs and books now available at the VPL.

Learn about the original tap collective, The Copasetics, and pick up a couple of moves too.

For more information please contact VPL - Fine Arts and History at 604-331-3716

(Thanks for the tip Siobhan!)

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Xoxolat: Junk-free Chocolate in Vancouver

Xoxolat (sho-sho-la) is open at 2391 Burrard Street (at 8th Ave) in Vancouver and I went in to check it out. Hodie is the owner and gave me a run-down of the store and each of the chocolate lines that she carries. The great thing about the store is that she carries single-origin chocolate bars from around the world (the packaging is amazing) as well as an extensive line of organic, Fair Trade chocolate and Equitable Trade chocolates. The chocolates are junk-free, in that there’s little or no emulsifiers or garbage found in most chocolate.

A great place for chocolate lovers and food geeks.


Machu Piccu Cafe truffle
Lavender dark chocolate bar
Bacon bar

No photos. Just deliciousness.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Sitka Books & Art in Kitsilano, Vancouver, BC

Super thrilled to have an independent bookstore in Kits.
Sitka Books & Art
2025 West 4th Ave.
Vancouver, BC, V6J 1N3

Tel: 604-734-2025
Fax: 604-734-2056
Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Store Hours: 10 a.m. –  6 p.m.
7 days a week

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Sitka Books Opening Day

Sitka Books Opening Day

Sitka Books Opening Day