New Star Blogs

Soviet Princeton shortlisted for BC Book Prize


ur_J & R bestCon­grat­u­la­tions to Jon Bartlett and Rika Rueb­saat, whose Sovi­et Prince­ton: Slim Evans and the 1932–33 Min­ers’ Strike is a final­ist for the Rod­er­ick Haig-Brown Region­al Prize at the BC Book Prizes!

Savvy read­ers will by now have real­ized that the Prince­ton in ques­tion is not the Ivy League school in New Jer­sey but the min­ing & ranch­ing com­mu­ni­ty in British Colum­bia, a 90 minute dri­ve east of Hope, which dur­ing the Great Depres­sion was the site of a vio­lent, extend­ed con­fronta­tion between coal min­ers and the town’s com­mer­cial inter­ests. The sto­ry of that tumul­tuous win­ter, when great world-his­tor­i­cal forces man­i­fest­ed in a small BC town, exist­ed only in the murky cor­ners of the town’s col­lec­tive mem­o­ry until Jon and Rika pieced it togeth­er from exten­sive archival research in libraries, muse­ums, and his­tor­i­cal soci­eties from Vic­to­ria to Ottawa. The result is a riv­et­ing read that, in the words of one review­er, “gives voic­es to the voice­less and for­got­ten men and women who fought, strug­gled, lived and died dur­ing this peri­od.”

9781554201105The BC Book Prizes win­ners will be announced April 30 in Vic­to­ria. In the mean­time, inter­est­ed par­ties in the Okana­gan have two chances in com­ing weeks to hear Jon and Rika speak (and sing!) about Sovi­et Prince­ton:

On March 12th they’ll be in Kere­meos at the Grist Mill & Gar­dens.

On April 9 they’re in Kelow­na at the Okana­gan Region­al Library — check back here for details, or tune in to our twit­ter or face­book pages or email newslet­ter.