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The Toronto Star makes Our Hero tingle?

Folks have been clamouring for an update. Maybe start with the fabulous reviews in The Toronto Star and January Magazine. The two are radically different, but both made me blush and tingle. Cut to this afternoon and "The Willow" in Hudson, Quebec, where we talked and taped for two hours. This was in aid of a three-part BBC series that will begin airing in February. And it followed hard on radio interviews at CJAD (Montreal), CBC Radio (Quebec), and CJMQ (Sherbrooke). At the Atwater Library in Montreal, the piper major of the Black Watch, Cameron Stevens, piped me to podium -- a special treat. Lynn Verge at the library orchestrated a wondrous event (sold all stock). And in Sherbrooke, at Bishop's University, a terrific audience turned out thanks to Mieke Koppen Tucker, an old friend -- and they bought a truckload of How the Scots and more than a few of my Arctic books. Multitudinous folks entered to win that incredible free voyage around Scotland with Adventure Canada, which is co-sponsored by HarperCollins Canada (which has done something fabulous and exemplary with a revolving homepage). Meanwhile, almost 100 people have checked out the interview at Book Club Buddy.
Ken McGoogan
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Win a trip to Scotland!

Yes, it's really happening. Adventure Canada and HarperCollins Canada are sponsoring a fabulous contest to celebrate the publication of How the Scots Invented Canada. You can win a free voyage through the Scottish Isles -- that's a free berth for one, plus a discount for a companion. How cool is that! I will be sailing on this expeditionary cruise as an author-historian. Along with other resource people, I'll give talks and slide-show presentations. As always, we will use Zodiacs to go ashore at different locations. And I promise that, if called upon, I will lead the charge to the nearest pub or whisky distillery. That's the kind of guy I am -- always willing to go that extra mile. Check out How the Scots and see for yourself.

Bonus: Here's a review that turned up in The Edmonton Journal . . . .
Ken McGoogan
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MacSkimming and Winter lead the charge?

Well, geez, already I like the Book Section in tomorrow's Globe and Mail and the paper's not on my doorstep yet. First we discover Roy MacSkimming writing about How the Scots Invented Canada:
"There’s indeed much fun here, as well as instruction (Scots always like that), and your name doesn’t have to begin with Mc or Mac to savour this book."

Then we find Kathleen Winter talking about Lady Franklin's Revenge: "What I love about this book, aside from McGoogan’s elegant, lucid and impassioned writing, is the turmoil between the lines." You gotta love it.
Next stops: Montreal and Sherbrooke. More details to your right under What's New.
Ken McGoogan
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Adventure Canada joins HarperCollins in launching the Scots

So how cool was that? We had a bagpiper precede me to the stage, we had publisher Phyllis Bruce of HarperCollins Canada produce a bottle of champagne, and we had Matthew Swan announce a fantastic contest involving the book and my next voyage with Adventure Canada. The book is How the Scots Invented Canada. The occasion was the Toronto launch at the Dora Keogh Pub. And the contest will involve sailing through the Scottish Isles, though details won't be announced until next week. For the rest, revelers ended up singing Northwest Passage, and Ben McNally Books moved 50 copies of the opus -- a sell out! Here, in a photo by Peter Rehak, you see Matthew capping an array of gifts with . . . wait for it . . . a can of haggis. Maybe you had to be there.
Ken McGoogan
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Before turning mainly to books about arctic exploration and Canadian history, Ken McGoogan worked for two decades as a journalist at major dailies in Toronto, Calgary, and Montreal. He teaches creative nonfiction writing through the University of Toronto and in the MFA program at King’s College in Halifax. Ken served as chair of the Public Lending Right Commission, has written recently for Canada’s History, Canadian Geographic, and Maclean’s, and sails with Adventure Canada as a resource historian. Based in Toronto, he has given talks and presentations across Canada, from Dawson City to Dartmouth, and in places as different as Edinburgh, Melbourne, and Hobart.