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Thursday, September 29, 2011

There's no denying anyone who spends any time boating the West Coast has a little Captain Vancouver in them, and it's Vancouver who provides Grant Lawrence's Adventures in Solitude with numerous woeful observations of Desolation Sound. Through his spyglass looking landward, the Captain saw: "not a single prospect that was pleasing to the eye" and thusly marked on his map the part of the northern end of the Strait of Georgia with one downer of a moniker.

So the Captain wasn't one to accentuate the positive in his memoirs. But Lawrence, who first hated, then loved, then loathed and has since come to love again his family's little part of this paradise sees both the fair weather and the foul. Not to mention all the people inbetween the Sound's sea and sky. Adventures in Solitude: What Not to Wear to a Nude Potluck and other stories from Desolution Sound comes complete with a cast of characters that include a motley assortment of root 'em/ shoot 'em up pioneers, slobby hippies, beery bachelors, carsick kids and one very well-armed octopus.

Where Vancouver found abandoned, flea-ridden settlements, dismal downpours and definitely no Northwest Passage, Lawrence has discovered a place of community, friendship and entertaining idiocy all tangled together in one speedboat of a read.