Boiling Point and Cold Cases
University of Regina Press / 10 September 2015

Boiling Point & Cold Cases: More Saskatchewan Crime Stories by Barb Pacholik, with Jana G. Pruden Published by University of Regina Press Review by Keith Foster $19.95 ISBN 978-0-88977-286-1 Gruesome, grisly, and ghastly are just three words that might describe some of the crimes in Barb Pacholik’s Boiling Point & Cold Cases: More Saskatchewan Crime Stories. Readers might wonder how some people can treat other humans so brutally. The collection consists of forty stories, thirty-six black and white photos or illustrations, and a list of sources on topics as diverse as Prohibition, marijuana grow-operations, and the Ku Klux Klan in Saskatchewan. Crimes range from shooting, stabbing, bludgeoning, and arsenic poisoning. Some motives are just plain weird. It’s hard to believe someone would kill another human being just to steal his car stereo. One man killed his family because, he said, he loved them so much. The time span ranges from late 19th century to early 21st century, primarily in Saskatchewan and Alberta. The earliest case cited in Boiling Point and Cold Cases occurred in 1885 when John Connor murdered Henry Mulaski in Moose Jaw. Connor was hanged in Regina on the very day that the trial of Louis Riel began….

Between Shadows
Coteau Books / 10 September 2015

Between Shadows by Kathleen Cook Waldron Published by Coteau Books Review by Michelle Shaw $8.95 ISBN 97815506129 Between Shadows is a beautifully crafted story for ages eight and up, told from the perspective of twelve-year-old Ari, whose beloved grandfather has died, leaving his cabin at Canoe Lake to his grandson. Unfortunately Ari’s dad and his Aunt Laurel want to sell the cabin and Ari is too young to stop them. Or is he? Author Kathleen Cook Waldron has an artist’s attention to detail. Descriptions of the characters are minimal yet I was left with a vivid image of each one through her ability to infuse their actions with life and personality. Similarly, her descriptions of the world at Canoe Lake become part of the ongoing narrative rather than stand alone descriptions of place. Sometimes I read a book and there’s a sentence or a phrase that suddenly jars me back into the real world. It just doesn’t seem to fit. With Between Shadows it felt like every word, phrase and sensory detail was carefully chosen and precisely placed. I was embraced by Ari’s world at Canoe Lake: his grandfather’s whimsically rainbow coloured log cabin with its carefully hidden, perfect beach…