Reviews & Readers' Comments, Media Interviews

To see 16 customer reviews , hover over and click on the cover images on my home page. This will take you into the Amazon website where you too are invited to write a review.

Rabbi Bulka radio interview: Scroll down to 2012-02-05 

                                                 True North Perspective interview 

Online interview with Patricia Zick http://wp.me/p2dNT0-1iA

Dunlop House Review of A Book of Kells

“A unique story, all the more compelling because it is true.  A young seaman marries an English bride and carries her off to his preaching and teaching Mission at God’s Lake, a community of 328 Swampy Crees located six hundred miles northeast of Winnipeg, Canada.  The reader is swept along with them, paddling the fur trade routes and keeping tabs on a mission, establishing a church and a farm, suffering terrible winters and thriving on northern summers.   They find themselves alone in a frozen universe trying to find a place for their baby to be born.
The story does not stop there.  The Great Depression and World War II intervene.   The missionaries’ grown child must find a delicate balance between ego and soul.  The adults, away from the romance of the North must live a difficult life and perhaps it is only in the future that their daught
er will rescue her parents’ lost egos.
This is not just a northern adventure, it is a journey into the souls of its characters." 


Review of A Book of Kells by Ellen Tanner Marsh, New York Times bestselling author 

When Margaret Kell Virany subtitled her family memoir A Book of Kells with "Growing Up in an Ego Void," readers could well get the impression that this is just another tell-all tale written by the bitter survivor of a dysfunctional family. The elements are all here: an undemonstrative Methodist minister for a father, a high-strung, humorless mother and three impressionable daughters who must live up to their parents’ expectations of "devoting their lives to being a good example to others" and "not taking credit for themselves but giving it to God."

Yet Virany’s affection for her remarkable and rather famous parents is evident throughout the book, and if she still wrestles with lingering confl icts stemming from the way she was raised, she has evidently learned to live with them well. Not that growing up in the Kell household of pre-WWII Ontario was easy. A sign in the church basement where Jack Kell preached warned, "Christ fi rst, others next, self last," a dictum Virany forever struggled to live by, even if it meant subjugating her natural exuberance and fierce intellect, and living with the secret guilt of resenting her cool and occasionally critical mother.

Virany recounts her litany of church functions and crises of faith with all the charm of the willful child she used to be, but it is in the telling of her parents’ early lives, taken from the diaries and letters left to her when they died, that her narrative soars. Virany’s father, Jack, was born in Cookstown, Ontario in 1897, a descendant of William and Mary Kell, who immigrated to Canada from Europe in the 1850s. Even as a boy, Jack knew he wanted to be a minister, and at a surprisingly young age he left civilization for the great wilds of the Canadian north to aid in the Methodist Church’s mission of evangelizing the Indians.

Blizzards, biting cold and hunger mark Jack Kell’s early years of ministry, yet he seems to have thrived on the challenge. The Cree Indians, fur trappers and other hardy souls who comprised his fl ock welcomed his ministrations, while a budding transatlantic courtship with a young Englishwoman soon proved successful, providing him with the wife and helpmeet he so desperately yearned for.

Kathleen Ward Kell, Virany’s mother, embraced the hardship of wilderness life with admirable courage for a sensitive young woman raised in the more genteel environs of Portsmouth, England. Virany’s account of their adventures, particularly the trek by sleigh through a blizzard to bring the pregnant Kathleen to a distant hospital, are riveting. When the Kells finally return to civilization the pace of the narrative doesn’t fl ag; Virany has the natural gifts of a born storyteller who keeps you caring about the characters no matter where they are.

Even as the story moves to her parents’ later years, when adulthood allows her to see them with a more discerning eye, Virany tends to treat them with the same exasperated affection, bringing their very human shortcomings to light with admirable clarity. Her own struggles to come to terms with her religious beliefs as well as her battle with the depression that seems to run in her family, are given equally honest scrutiny.

The real Book of Kells, Virany reminds us, is the earliest known illuminated manuscript known to western civilization. Produced by ninth-century Catholic monks in Kells, Ireland, it is perhaps one of the most beautiful works of illustrated Holy Scriptures. "It would be a stretch for me to claim lineage from them," admits Virany at the end of her book, "but my family did try to illuminate the gospels by the way they lived their daily lives." And by all accounts, they succeeded. 

Review in 

The United Church Observer b

y Muriel Duncan

The day-to-day history of the United Church is perhaps told best in smaller books written and published by the people who were there. They bring us valuable glimpses of early life in the manse.
Margaret Kell Virany, daughter of Rev. Jack and Kay Kell, provides wonderful insights into the strong convictions and moral duty that bind church families together and tear them apart as they try in their own ways to live out their Christian beliefs. Her entertaining story includes the gathering in Toronto's Mutual Street Arena as the United Church was born in 1925, a transatlantic courtship, and Native mission field work in Oxford House in northern Manitoba, but she also tells us about signing "the pledge" and provides advice about passing time waiting for a church service to be over in this frank, chatty book.

Kathleen's Cariole Ride Official Online Readers' Club Review

4 out of 4 stars
"This is a very difficult piece to present to the world. It carries a part of your heart and you cannot twist it in any way for it would take the authenticity away from the raw emotions of Jack and Kathleen. It has been a pleasure to glimpse the world through their eyes. A rare treat for the modern generation indeed?."


Readers' Comments on A Book of Kells


"I was just blown away by the ending of your book, a very unexpected twist, unexpected by y our skillful setup. The end of the book has so much energy and brazen personality because it was about you -- and you know yourself best. It was a fantastic, high momentum journey and I loved it. Thank you for having the courage to share it!  Several parts really resonated with me, others I just enjoyed. R.S. Orlando, FL

"My husband and I are only at Chapter 15 but wanted to tell you how much we are enjoying it. There is such a wonderful richness of vivid details. Your mother and father lived such interesting lives. It caused hubby to shed tears when she finally accepted his marriage proposal." Pearl Pirie, Ottawa ON

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"What a fantastic book! You have obviously taken time and effort to produce such a gem. It is very thoughtful, revealing and respectful, providing wonderful insights into your parents and yourself. Their lives were complex and the way the story is told helps to put my own life into a larger context and perspective. I loved the history and the description of life back then, such as taking a ship to England and living in the non-motorized North. This book is a generous gift to the next generation. We are very lucky indeed." Diane Taylor Beckett, Ottawa, ON
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"My flight out to CA was made all the more enjoyable because I read A Book of Kells on the way. I thought it was very well done - a very good read. It has real potential for a wider audience." Chris Delmar, Westport, CT
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"I can hardly wait for Margaret Virany to write a sequel to this book. It will be a bestseller." Suzanne Soulière, Aylmer, QC
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"Great book! I was particularly interested in your father’s travels in the north and your account of life in Cochrane, Ontario." David Inglis, Aylmer, QC
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"While I realize that the story is a very personal account of your family’s relationships, I thought it was also a fascinating social history. I was most intrigued by the details of life on the reserve, in post-war Canada (and pre-war), life in a minister’s family and details about the changing roles and opportunities for women.
"I was delighted to read about the posting to Thistletown United Church, because I was a member of that church for most of my childhood and my parents found a very close and supportive community of friends there when we moved to Toronto from Kingston. Thirty-five years later, my father’s closest friends are still former members of Thistletown. You may know that the church just recently closed when several neighbouring churches amalgamated.
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"As children, we carefully observed the ministers’ children and I do sympathize with your descriptions of what it was like to have to be a good example. Our ministers seemed to have produced children who were quite determined not to be good examples and we all took great delight in observing how bad many of them were. Your book made me appreciate the kind of pressure those children must have felt, with all of us in the congregation watching and judging! .......
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"Your book is a very rich and detailed account of lives that are often overlooked by grander histories but they are lives that illustrate vividly the most pressing concerns of people in those times. Thank you!" Val MacDonald, Toronto, ON
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"Bravo, Margaret!" Jayne Simms-Dalmotas, Aylmer, QC
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"Margaret Virany writes about what we all want to know about -- that is, our history." Guy Dubois, La Bibliiotheque d’Aylmer, QC
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"I received your book and once I started reading it on Friday I couldn't put it down. I finished it on Saturday and then my mother took it!
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"What a great book. You did an excellent job. What a memory you have, the things that you recall from an early age. I laughed, I cried, I was amazed at your parents and what they lived through. What a life! What a great book! ......
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"I found some similarities in my own life, one which I'm sure you will find uncanny is that my husband has a daughter, now aged 15, whose mother is married to a United Church minister and he has two daughters. . . Your father sounds like a SAINT and your mother had her trials too, but it's the similarity of growing up with three daughters and a father who is in the United Church that kept coming back to me as I read the book." Melynda Jarratt, Canadian Warbrides website, Fredericton, NB
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"Being a hockey fan, the part I liked best was the part about Tim Horton." Bruce Stratton, Toronto, ON
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"Your book tells stories that are so similar to those of my family that frequently I wonder if I couldn’t just change a few names and dates and tell my families’ story too." Dean Jones, Ottawa, ON
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"I enjoyed your book -- especially the description of your parents’ adventures up north. I have lived in the north also. I have too many things and I think you were very lucky to have the parents you did.." Dr. Richard Christie, Ottawa, ON
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"Even though I was brought up as a Catholic, I could identify with some of the pressures you felt while growing up." Linda Beaudry, hairdresser, Ottawa, ON
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"Your book was the perfect Christmas gift for my mother. Now I’ll read it too." Joy Miller, Aylmer, QC
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"I couldn't put A Book of Kells down until I finished it and I intend to read it again. It makes pioneer life in the North come alive for me again. I was born in Hearst, Ontario, where my father was the police chief. I identify with the stories of those selfless, goal-oriented emissaries of Christ -- leading by example and the Holy Spirit. Such integrity! Virany writes with great honesty. No, they were not saints, and they boasted no egos, but isn't that exciting? Our people loved their ministers who imparted youth and purpose into pioneer communities. Their sacrifices are unheralded but they truly were spiritual leaders, family counselors, psychiatrists and friends to "cabin-weary" souls. Truly, it was Virany’s destiny to illuminate their courageous lives. She is an exceptional writer and uses her wealth of journals and documentation expertly in creating her book. I am thankful for this delightful read.." Anita Dell, London, ON
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"(Virany) gives a very accurate description of Cochrane and how it was. She mentions people whom I haven't thought of in many years. I am able to identify with much of the book, including the tales of life in the north - much like I remember of my Father's descriptions. Dad never used a horse, just dog teams, and he was not there in the capacity of a missionary. He never recorded his adventures and none of his children were capable of putting it together either. . . Mom's story has many similarities to Mother Kell's." Lillian Thompson, London, ON
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"I couldn’t put this book down. I read it right through." Joy Ruttan, Aylmer, QC
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"This is a good book. I have bought copies for three friends." Rubena Cook, Aylmer, QC
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"This is just a quick note to let you know how absorbing I found A Book of Kells. I just wished that some of the sections could have been expanded, so riveting did I find some of your characters and episodes. Congratulations on being a master storyteller and getting the book in print." Val Knowles, Ottawa, ON
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"A Book of Kells recalls so many memories for me. I too attended Weston Collegiate and can remember back when horse-drawn delivery wagons were a common sight on the streets." Jean Reid, Aylmer, QC
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"I was fascinated by your mother’s story and couldn’t stop reading A Book of Kells. It is a very good book. I especially liked the part about your mother going to hospital in mid-winter on a horse-drawn toboggan to have her baby." Ruby Wahl, Aylmer, QC
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"I enjoyed your book and it made me cry (when your father died)." Janet Webb, Ottawa, ON

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"What really struck me on the first level is how similar our experiences were. The images of being in church, dangling legs, covert fights with siblings, roasts awaiting the unexpected Sunday guests, morals and messages impossible/unnatural to live up to .... it was all there and you caught it perfectly! I loved it! And, tho’ it wasn’t the church that sent us out, the moving around was certainly the same!" Joan Pond, Jordan, ON
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"My dad enjoyed your dad’s friendship when he was ministering at Annan near Owen Sound in the 70’s. I could identify with some of the details from having grown up in a minister’s family myself. I admire the way you have woven your family’s story together." Helen C. Porter, Toronto, ON
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"You must have had access to a lot of papers, your book is so evocative and detailed. I wondered about the boat name Lapageria because I know this as the name of a plant (a climbing plant from Chile, very pretty and quite rare). Re your comments on childhood food, 'snap'! NZ was settled mainly by Anglicans and I have always found there is a very different outlook here, less duty bound, and more into enjoyment.
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........"You have written a most interesting and thought-provoking book, and you write with love and understanding. It raised memories from my background, but, my goodness, what a huge measure of determination and commitment was made by your parents, and I am sure by so many people of that time. Such people contributed greatly to the development of the country, but also, as you write, it left scars. ......."I was struck by the communication that was maintained to and from such inaccessible places. Letters seemed to arrive more quickly than I would have thought possible, considering distance, weather and modes of travel. I was struck by the apparent ease of organizing travel across the Atlantic, rather like booking a plane trip now.
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........"I had never known the origin of Annesley Hall and never thought it had a connection to John Wesley.
"Writing about yourself for publication must be a tremendous challenge. You have done a splendid job, and the years of journalism have ‘paid off’ handsomely." Joan Ferner, Wellington, NZ
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"Your story is a courageous and honest book. When our daughter was home for Christmas she started reading it and said, ‘This is great!’" Bruce Wahl, Aylmer, QC

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"I am rereading your book Marg, and marveling once again at your ability to recall. I also like the way you write the story in such a literate manner. In most memoirs I read, the author does not seem to be able to stand back and give the reader more than they would get from reading a journal." Elinor Loucks, Oxford, Ohio
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"This book is skilfully done and would be a good read for anyone, not only those with a personal interest. I was especially interested to see the familiar names and places where her family lived and worked." Ruth Johnston, London, Ontario
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"I must tell you how much I enjoyed your book.
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......."People debate the merits of handwritten letters vs typed and e-mail seems to rank on the very bottom ( not for me who otherwise might not write at all.) I think the letters your parents wrote to each other and your Mother so faithfully kept give a powerful point to the handwritten advocates. How special it must have been for you to look at their thoughts written in those familiar hands. And how well they communicated what mattered to them. Did you regret there wasn't a similar record of their later lives?
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......."I don't think I ever met your parents and I wish I had. Despite the inevitable misunderstandings from one generation to another, you were blessed with a very interesting pair. Both of them. How poignant your Mother's regret in not sharing her chocolates with her husband. Surely we all have memories like that when we didn't do what we wished we had.
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......."And you Marg, I had no idea you were anything but the very self confident and happy young woman I knew at Vic. But then, I too tried, probably in vain, to hide my many, many uncertainties. In retrospect, how much easier it would have been if we had just abandoned the facades but that would have been terrifying! Again, thank you for sharing your family and yourself with us." Kathie Ross, Santa Barbara, CA
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"I don’t know how your mother did the things she did, living in the north under such rough conditions. I lived in northern Quebec but I couldn’t take it so we moved south. She must have been very strong. I want to talk to you about her." Nano McConnell, Aylmer, QC
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"I so enjoyed receiving your autographed copy of A Book of Kells this Christmas! " I loved learning about your family’s interesting history, and your own life as well. Thanks for sharing!" Pat Christie, Toronto, ON
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"I have been reading about your father’s life on the Native reserve, his courtship of your mother, and their wedding. It is so touching. You have done such a tender yet distanced description of their lives. It is absolutely absorbing with so much fascinating detail . . . I can't begin to guess how much sorting and sifting you went through but the result is fine reading. It inspired this reader with admiration for and sympathy with both of your parents. What a lovely and loving thing you have done in creating this picture of them." Jocelyn Stratton, Toronto, ON
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"Anyone who was a preacher’s kid or grew up with the Methodist ideal of service to others will gobble up this book. The writing is smooth and beautiful to read and the author is a born storyteller with a unique story to tell. Even the details are a joy -- the icebox man, the charabanc and the boring church services. I could envision these scenes and many of the other accurate descriptions." Mary Urquhart, London, ON
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"Great book! Congratulations on publishing your first book! You certainly did a wonderful job of detailing life in the Kell household and it was fun to see my Dad's name mentioned several times. They certainly were good friends and I have vague memories of your Dad and my Taylor grandparents being very close." Earla Taylor Woodworth, Middlebury, VT
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"I hear from Kathie Ross that you have published a new book about your family. The rumour mill proclaims it to be a ‘must read’. . . I would be most interested in hearing about your book and where it might be available. Is it possible the Ginger Press in Owen Sound will be carrying it?" Nancy O’Donnell, Dundalk, ON
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"The high point of your story, for me personally, had to do with my relationship -- or lack of -- with my father. Both my parents were beautiful Christian people and I loved them dearly. I always knew intellectually that they returned their love for me but neither of them was able to express that love in ways that were meaningful to me. They both had a wonderful sense of humour. We had so much fun together and I was always grateful for the foundation of faith and values they gave me. But I was always afraid of losing their love -- particularly Dad’s. Almost from day one I was skeptical about so many things that were taught about the Christian doctrine and was so afraid to tell Dad. We never had a truly one-on-one relationship. I think it took me a lot longer to grow up and face things as they were than it did you. But I never could explain satisfactorily to myself why we could not communicate. Eventually I came to terms with this and various other problems but I could not explain that particular problem beyond the fact that it was partly generational and partly due to their respective backgrounds. Though it has not bothered me for years it has always nagged a little at the back of my psyche and when I read about your telling your father of an incident with a young man (I would probably never have had the nerve to even tell my father) and then you said, "God was always in the middle and I was on my own," I suddenly whooped for joy and said out loud (to no one) ‘now I know what happened with Dad and me. God always got in the way.’ And so I guess I am writing, not only to tell you how much I enjoyed your story, but also to thank you for turning on that light for me. It was something of an epiphany." Frances Thompson, London, ON
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"I was reading the book quickly and then stopped and said, ‘Hey, this is very well written!’ My father, too, was a very dedicated man of the same era as Father Kell." Caryl Peterson, Toronto, ON
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"The suspense kept me reading. I kept wondering, ‘When are these two people ever going to get married?’" Ella Saunders, Ottawa, ON
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"You did a great job of telling your story. I know that you wrote for a newspaper but writing an item of news or an article of interest must be different from moving back and forth in the chronological frame of time in order to hold the readers’ interest. It seems to me that Margaret Atwood and Michael Ondaatge jump around too much to suit me but when I’ve finished piecing the events into chronological order I have to admit that they’ve written another good book!. . . By the way, I read the early pages of your book with a map of Manitoba nearby." Lenora Schoenroth, London, ON
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"Thank you very much for this book which I enjoyed so much. Some of your expressions are beautiful and keep reverberating in my mind." Eleanor Wright, Toronto, ON
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"It was a thrill to share parts of your life familiar and unfamiliar, and of course to compare events with those of my life and family. I am grateful that you had both the skill and persistence to take the box that was given to you and present it as the good story that you recognized it held within it. After all the hard slogging to write the book, I hope you are enjoying the limelight of its positive reception." Barbara Walker, Toronto, ON
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"I found the early chapters about your parents’ lives fascinating. I thought you were a bit hard on your mother, because as her parents grew older she must have felt that she would like to have been able to give them a helping hand, and to be able to pop in and see them. Probably worry and anxiety about them caused her to explode occasionally. Your parents always seemed very happy together whenever I stayed with them and I have some very happy memories." Dorothy Letton, Kent, UK (Author's note: My Mother’s Sunday School pupil and friend)
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"Your book struck a chord with me. We had the same mother. I attended a Methodist Chapel while I was growing up in England, although my mother was Anglican. I remember the circuit preacher, who rode up on his bicycle, took his pants’ clips off and came into the church wiping his brow. The service was very extemporaneous. When I went to the Anglican Church I was lost in their formalities. Thanks for the memories. Thanks for writing this book." Enid Page, President of the Heritage Association, Aylmer, QC

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"I really enjoyed reading your book. It mentions Sundridge, the town where I grew up." Beatrice Hanson, Aylmer, QC
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"I couldn’t put A Book of Kells down. I find myself extremely grateful for your labours in preserving this treasure of heritage for myself and I trust, some day, for my children (who have no clue yet). I am also deeply touched by your self disclosure; I know not just you better -- but my family and myself for it." Kathy Mathers Hibbert
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"Your research must have been extensive but your efforts in publishing this book will live on forever." June Dunlop Shipton, Barrie, ON
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"My mother had told me some stories from the past but now everything is set straight, in the right order. Thank you for the book." Andrew Mathers, Brampton, ON
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"I quite enjoyed reading this book. I cry in church too." Irene Kell Botham, Almonte, ON
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"This book is excellent. I am progressing slowly with it because for me there are many unknown words. I hope and think it’s a great success and many will buy it." Countess Kati Eszterhazy, Budapest, Hungary

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"Is this title a pun?" Jano Foti, librarian, Budapest, Hungary (Author's Note: Yes)
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"I want to thank you for my copy of your book. I recognized a fair bit of it from an early draft of "Lady and Knight of the Toboggan" that my mother passed on to me. I found the added material interesting -- I’m not sure if I could be as honest about my family in print! ......
"As I read the book, there were a couple of occasions where you described behaviours that I’d observed, but interpreted differently. I found myself wishing that my grandparents and mother were still here so that I could ask for some clarification. Reading it also brought back a memory that I had from a visit when I was about 10. I remember thinking that some people (my grandparents) probably made much better grandparents than parents. I didn’t realize how right I was! ...
"I also found myself wondering if my mother encouraged you to include my grandfather’s doubts about whether he had married the right girl. On several occasions she made statements that were on the edge of this issue and that invited a comment or question. I always refused the bait (if it was bait), choosing to avoid an unpredictable and uncomfortable conversation. Now that I’ve read your book, I can see why it made an impact on her and I also find myself wishing she was here to talk to. Thank you for continuing the tradition (well, two generations can make a tradition) of writing family histories." Bill Mathers, London, ON .....

"I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed reading your book. Having visited York Factory last summer I was very interested to read about your parents’ adventures in that inhospitable region. And, of course, I felt that the book gave me some more insights into the nature of the Kell psyche." Dr. Patricia Kell, Ottawa, ON

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"Congratulations. You did a great job, and I thought your writing was especially elegant toward the end. It must have been a real challenge to sort through the letters and journals and organize that material. And what a great story it is! My favorite part was the trip to deliver your pregnant mother to the hospital. I don't think I had heard that before. I do remember your mother saying that, when they were living in the Indian community, the natives would appear inside the house, unannounced. It must have been a great challenge for her to adjust to life in that remote spot. (I had my Atlas out, checking out those places in northern Manitoba, as well as the communities in Ontario.) How interesting about Esther! George and I never really knew your Dad, did we?
"You had good courage, Marg, to write in such a personal way. I feel I know you so much better through your book and will cherish it." Jean-Marie Kell Doan, Ottawa, ON

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"The story is exciting and the posed problems become yours as you read the book." Anna Virany Marton, Bern, Switzerland
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"Lovina Campbell was my great-grandmother. I will share your book with some of our Campbell cousins and I know they will enjoy it as I have. There aren’t many Campbell cousins left. I visited your mother and father in hospital in Owen Sound. You bared your soul and put their story together brilliantly. It was such a pleasure to read your book." Doris McKillican, Barrie ON
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"I can read English without a dictionary because usually it is not important if there are words, or even passages, which I don’t understand. But with A Book of Kells it was different. The chief thoughts and feelings often were in the details." Dr. Judith Virany Foldy, Budapest, Hungary
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"It is a real honor for me to receive this book. My memories are so very clear of the history recorded in it. Uncle Jack (when he would come home for a short time) used to chase Albert and me around the house and we would hide under the bed. What a happy time he gave everyone! Another night I’ll never forget - when Uncle Jack brought Aunt Kathleen to Grandma Kell’s and she had just arrived from her overseas trip, newly married. I do not know how she ever coped." Mary Kell Dunlop, Stayner, ON
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"I have just finished reading A Book of Kells and I just have to let you know how I enjoyed and was fascinated by it. My sister-in-law, Dorothy Glenn, asked me to get it for her at the Kell reunion. . . Of course when I got it I started to read it and couldn’t put it down until I finished it. As you probably know, your father and my mother were first cousins, so you and I are second cousins, the same as Mary Dunlop and I. My grandfather was Thomas Kell, a brother of your grandfather’s. . . My mother was very fond of all her cousins and one of my fondest memories is the parrot in your grandparents’ home. . . My mother was born in Cherry Hill . . .Hope I haven’t bored you with all this ancient history, but I did enjoy every page of your book; so thanks for all the time and effort you must have put into it." Helen (Glenn) Hanna, Stayner, ON
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"I really enjoyed reading your book. While reading the sections on the Cree, Norway House, etc., I had a sense of familiarity and on page 107 I knew why. My maiden name is Evans and a year ago I was lucky enough to borrow a copy of a book about the time the Rev. James Evans (related not closely) spent in the same area. The last time we attended the Kell reunion I took my research of the descendants of Thomas Kell, which now contains over 800 names. Congratulations on making your families’ history so interesting." Dorothy Glenn, Thunder Bay, ON
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"We are enjoying A Book of Kells very much." Patrick and Jennifer Burnett, Sydney, Australia
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"Thank you so much for your very interesting book. Philip has snatched it out of my hand and is reading it but I have glimpsed enough to see a lot of familiar names from the past and to see how complex some personalities were - so I look forward to having a proper read of it . I did not know that Grandpa Walter had been offered a knighthood." Janet Ward Bevan-Thomas, Henley-on-Thames, UK
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"Make sure our school gets a copy of this book. This is what we want to read -- about what really happend." Two grade six boys, Aylmer, QC

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"Whilst in Frankfurt during the Book Fair I picked up a copy of A Book of Kells. Back home in The Netherlands I read it and very much enjoyed it, as well as your style of writing. What a warm way to honor your parents. Congratulations on such a lovely book. Being a writer and translator I know what it takes to accomplish a book." Hans Offringa, Book Surge European ‘Ambassador’
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"I just downloaded your book. Ingenious method of publication. Thanks for letting me know about it." Bill McGee, Ottawa, ON
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"Thanks for letting me know about your book, Margaret. I am using a similar type of book in my course right now, titled This Dark World. It tells of the author's experience finding and then losing her fundamentalist faith. Your book also might be useful for my course as an application of the research we discuss. So, thanks for the heads up!" Michael Nielsen , Psychology of Religion Professor, University of Georgia
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"Thanks for the information about your book, which I'll order immediately. I'd be happy to mention it in the next edition of the Frye newsletter. I'll also spread the word about A Book of Kells (your maiden name, as I recall) among my circle of small Fryes." Professor Robert Denham, Roanoke College, VA
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"What a beautiful surprise to receive a copy of A Book of Kells from our mutual friend Mary Urquhart! It was a humbling experience during presentation of my essay ("The Correspondence of Northrop Frye and Helen Kemp 1932-1939)" to quote verbatim from various pages of it. Introducing you as a stranger, an author, to our Society for Learning in Retirement was a pleasure, an unexpected gift." Violet Shelley, London, ON
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"Thank you for sending me A Book of Kells. It is clearly a labour of love. I am very grateful for those who are committed to not losing our history. Your book is a valuable contribution to keeping alive our heritage." The Very Rev. Bill Phipps, Calgary, AB
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"The generosity of donors has always played an important part in the development of the library collection, particularly in subject areas with a special historical background. Please be assured that we are most appreciative." Sunhee Ro, United Church Archives, Toronto, ON
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"We wish to extend our thanks for your donation to our Celebrity Auction . . .The book you donated was a very popular item. . . I enjoyed the book; some of the articles and words brought back some memories. We must be around the same age!" Mary Wilson, Rector’s Warden, Christ Church (Aylmer)

Media Interviews

Articles in the Portsmouth, UK News

Rabbi Bulka radio interview on CHUM: Scroll down to 2012-02-05 

True North Perspective interview

Daytime interview on Rogers TV  

                                               



 

 

 

 

 

 


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