Monday, May 01, 2006

The Hermit of Gully Lake - Joan Baxter

The Basics: The Hermit of Gully Lake, Joan Baxter, 2005, 160 pages, softcover

How I found it: I had seen it in the Nova Scotia section of Chapters here and then I went to the Halifax Public Library and saw it on display in their new non-fiction section so I picked it up.

What's it about?: A biography about a man from northern Nova Scotia who deserted the military by jumping off a troop train heading that was taking him and other soldiers to serve in WWII. He lived the rest of his life in a hut next to Gully Lake in the northern Nova Scotia wilderness. He was a hermit, but he was not completely cut off from the outside world. He lived mostly in the bush until his death at 87 years old in late 2003 or early 2004.

Did I like it?: Yes! There wasn't a lot of info about him to work with, but the author does a great job anyway. She really makes the reader understand the hermit, how he lived, and why he might have chosen to live that way. I liked the idea of someone spending their whole adult life camping out.

Would you like it?: I think so. Even if you are not interested in the outdoors, if it still interesting from an anthropological perspective since the hermit lived in his own little culture. As well, it is an interesting biography. It is not the best biography I've ever read, but it is definitely the most unique. Plus it's a small book so it won't take you long to get through it.

But don't take my word for it: Well, you might have to as Amazon doesn't have any reviews for this one. Here is the press page for the publisher and a Wikipedia article about him as these are all the only relevant sites I can find.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous9:49 p.m. ADT

    I saw a press release about a documentary that is in the works about the hermit of gully lake. The trailer is fantastic!