Here Be Dragons: Telling Tales Of People, Passion and Power

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And I feel genuinely humbled by the numerous benefactors who threw me lifelines along the way. Their generosity, not always intended, created an immense debt that this book will in part repay. The unexamined life is not worth living, as Socrates concluded, but the examined existence becomes real only when shared with others, in my case through the highly subjective act of writing.

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One problem is that while most biographers know too little, all autobiographers know too much. I have weeded out discussions of most of the issues, political and economic, that provided the context for my labours, since I covered that swampy territory in my books. At the same time, I have attempted to write not just with my brain but also with my heart and my gut.

I wanted to capture the fury and fear I felt when, as a little boy, I watched the Nazis invading Prague on the Ides of March, I wanted to recreate the pervasive odour of diesel oil aboard a Royal Canadian Navy warship at sea. I wanted to portray the palpable, acrid smell of raw fear as half a dozen political leaders I came to know faced their inevitable defeat by angry voters.

My previous books were fuelled by the energy of their protagonists. This time, I am the sole catalyst.

Peter Charles Newman

I approach the task as though I were sitting around a campfire telling my tale to cub scouts or retired sanitary inspectors, knowing they will ask impossible questions. Why, Mr. Why all those big fat books, Mr.

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Why all the marriages? Why all that travel, why all that ambition? Why indeed. To write a valid memoir, the author must confront difficult truths and reveal not just the facts and the plot line, but the story contained in a life. Hindsight gives our lives structure, but in the reality of daily living everything happens at once. We chomp a hard-boiled egg in a spacious Toronto townhouse on Saturday morning and play with a thought.

May | Literary Review of Canada

There is no telling which seemingly trivial incidents will set our lives on radical new paths while the nightmares that bedevil our sleep vanish with the dawn. Each experience led me to another, and the angle of my bounce determined the direction of my life. I have found it unnecessary to raise an artificial barrier between my private life and public events, as they seemed so often to have happened in tandem. For example, I have never felt it was entirely coincidental that my marriage of twelve years to Camilla Turner foundered the same week as the Meech Lake Accord collapsed, both following long and difficult negotiations.

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If there appear to be parallels between the stories of Newman and Canada, it is not because I claim any exalted status. It just sort of happened, more or less that way. Success and fame have always been piranhas nibbling at my nerve ends. I could never get enough of either and thus missed enjoying both. The cost of success is the absence of a balanced life; the quest for fame takes its pound of flesh in the loss of reality. The latter exacts a higher price than the former. Neither brings genuine satisfaction, and all too often I have created the conditions that have contributed to my unhappiness, so that I found myself running ever harder in the pursuit of ever more elusive goals.

In writing this book, I set aside glorification of the self, the ultimate heresy of any memoir.

Books by Peter C Newman

Objectivity was neither possible nor desirable. Only the dead can be truly objective. Convert currency. Add to Basket. Compare all 6 new copies. Book Description Douglas Gibson Books. Condition: New. New book.

  • Here Be Dragons: Telling Tales of People, Passion and Power.
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Peter Newman (Interview)

A poor immigrant boy arrives on these shores with nothing but a dream. Through hard work and sheer force of will he succeeds despite the odds, rising to the top of his field, gaining renown, and becoming an inspiration to the next generation. Beginning with Newman as an year-old boy in flight from the Nazis in early , pinned down by machine gun fire as a Stuka strafes the beach at Biarritz, the book is absolutely compelling.

The narrative follows Newman through his adolescence his description of the nocturnal sexual shenanigans after lights out at Upper Canada College will likely cause most observers of the Canadian establishment to break out in a cold sweat , his marriages, and the development of his multifaceted career. He also provides detailed backstories for many of his bestselling books including The Empire of the Bay and the Canadian Establishment series. While many of the anecdotes are clearly well seasoned, the book reads with a surprising freshness and verve.

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It ends all too soon. Jack McClelland emerges as a larger-than-life Canadian hero. While Newman is quick to stake claim to his mistakes, particularly his failings in his marriages, his sense of his own fallibility is somewhat limited. While his abrasiveness, for example, is legendary in some circles, little mention is made of it here although the distinction he draws between Peter Newman the person and Peter C. Newman the professional creation could be read as a sort of explanation. The final section of Here Be Dragons reads as an envoi, a valediction, as Newman attempts to make sense of his life and his actions.

  • Newman, Peter Charles.
  • Here Be Dragons: Telling Tales of People, Passion and Power | Quill and Quire;
  • Peter C Newman | Official Publisher Page | Simon & Schuster.
  • Writing | Lynne Melcombe.
  • Counting Silly Faces Numbers 21-30 (Counting Silly Faces to 100). admin