Saturday, February 25, 2017

“Tide Rips and Back Eddies” by Proctor and Maximchuk

Tide Rips and Back Eddies: Bill Proctor’s Tales of Blackfish Sound (Harbour Publishing, 2015) is the second book Bill Proctor and Yvonne Maximchuck have co-authored about Billy’s life in and around the Broughton Archipelago between northern Vancouver Island and British Columbia’s remote coastal mainland.

Following in the footsteps of Full Moon, Flood Tide, this book is full of the many stories about renowned Billy Proctor. In each book, I was amazed at his detailed memory of names, dates, and events.

Tide Rips and Back Eddies begins with Billy’s early life growing up to a young man in Freshwater Bay on Swanson Island. Here he learned to love nature, fish, and make a living from the abundant resources on the land and in the sea. Key points are highlighted with photographs and drawings by Yvonne.

Leaving Alert Bay on Cormorant Island by air.
Billy was an amazing commercial fisherman. There are stories of his many boats, fishing expeditions, his marine ways for boat repairs, and many of his old time compatriots. In between the stories are lots of great fishing tips, especially for salmon.

The parts of the book I enjoyed the most were about life on the coast over the years. Billy told about his mother’s home. Like many along the coast, many of the years were spent in a float home. That’s something I can relate to.

Chapters I really enjoyed were about living in Echo Bay on Gilford Island, his collections, museum and the buildings he has reconstructed from the past. The detailed description of how to build a hand loggers shack was especially interesting.

Artist, Author Yvonne Maximchuk at our float cabin.
I feel like I know Billy from reading both of his books. I felt the same way about Yvonne Maximchuck from reading her memoir Drawn to Sea, but it didn’t stop there. Yvonne came to visit me at our float cabin home on Powell Lake. We felt an immediate connection.

Maybe someday Wayne and I will get brave enough to tackle Johnstone Strait and make it to Echo Bay to see Yvonne and her home/studio, meet Billy, and visit his museum filled with Coastal BC history and evidence of a life well lived.

You can find Tide Rips and Back Eddies online in print and e-book formats at Amazon. It's also available in BC Ferries gift shops and local bookstores. -- Margy

14 comments:

  1. Welcome to the Book Club. You've started off in a most interesting fashion...:)

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    1. Thank you. I was fortunate enough to meet the co-author Yvonne Maximchuk in person. She was visiting a neighbouring town and I invited her to come to my cabin for a visit. What a surprise, she came! So exciting. - Margy

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  2. Welcome to the book review club. What a beautiful area. I have never been to British Columbia, but I would love to go.

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    1. We came here on vacation and knew it was the place we wanted to retire. It took two years to immigrate, but it's been well worth it. - Margy

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  3. Welcome t o the book club. That is a beautiful area, one I'd like to visit, too.

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    1. Thanks for the warm welcome from everyone. - Margy

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  4. Welcome to the book review club! When I'm not abroad on sabbatical, I live in coastal Maine and would love to see coastal Canada some day. Given the political situation in the USA, Canada is all the more attractive.

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    1. One year we flew our plane to northern Quebec then came south to enter the States in Maine. We landed in Bar Harbor and camped in Acadia National Park. So beautiful, and I saw fireflies for the very first time. - Margy

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  5. Welcome to BRC!! I've only visited British Columbia once, years ago, but I've been yearning to go back. So lovely!

    I'm always impressed when people remember enough details about their lives to write about them. I'm lucky if I can remember last week. :)
    Alyssa

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    1. I'm with you Alyssa. I was amazed at home much Billy remembered, names, dates, events. He may have kept journals, but never mentioned them. - Margy

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  6. I'm so glad to welcome you to our book club!

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    1. Thanks for the information and recommendation. - Margy

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  7. Both Billy and Yvonne sound like interesting people. If you ever make it to his museum, you'll have to take pictures for us! I've never been to BC (although it's on my bucket list). I'm actually from Toronto. Welcome aboard! (seems appropriate given your living arrangements. :) ) ~Barrie

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    1. Of course I will, but it may not happen. Johnstone Strait and her part of the coast is well known for windy weather and high seas. I'm what you might call a "chicken of the sea" brand boater. But it would be fun once I got there for sure. - Margy

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