Theme Layout

Boxed or Wide or Framed


Theme Translation

Display Featured Slider


Featured Slider Styles

Display Grid Slider

Grid Slider Styles

Display Author Bio

Display Instagram Footer

Dark or Light Style

Search This Blog

Blog Archive


Popular Posts


Fatal Passage still working magic

Big shoutout to the John Rae Society and the editors who put together the latest Aglooka Advisor (Winter 2019). The editors asked people who take out membership in the Society why they decided to join. Two recent members replied and both mentioned the first of my five books on Arctic exploration.
Neil Ferguson  noted: "A visit to the book shop in the Skara Brae visitor centre [in Orkney] led to the discovery of Fatal Passage and I suppose it all mushroomed from there. . . . My imagination was kindled by reading of Ken McGoogan's journey from Gjoa Haven to the site on Boothia Peninsula where John Rae first saw that the strait remained free of ice for part of the year and that King William Island was an island and not part of Boothia Peninsula."
The editors note that "Neil booked a place on a Hurtigruten curise this August so as to be able to stand on the same place Rae did when he identified the last 'missing piece' of the puzzle of the North West Passage."
And Nick Collis Bird responded that he had always been interested in Polar exploration. "Franklin was a hero to me until I read Fatal Passage by Ken McGoogan. I'd never even heard of John Rae. I thought, 'There really ought to be a society to promote this amazing man' and lo and behold I came across [the JRS]. Of course I just had to join." 
These are the bits that jumped out at me, though the Advisor contains much else of interest.
[Right: In 1999, Cameron Treleaven, the late Louie Kamookak and I placed a plaque at the ruins of the cairn that John Rae built to mark his discovery of the final link in the Northwest Passage.]

Ken McGoogan
Share This Post :
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.