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I really enjoyed this collection of sailing and wilderness stories and memories from life in the 1920's and 1930's on Vancouver Island. The author, Capi and her five children spent four months every summer living on and sailing their little boat. They explored a waterway known as the Inside Passage between coastal British Columbia and Vancouver Island.
The book is filled with wonderful descriptions of sailing, the sea, wildlife and the people they encountered on their travels. Blanchet works a good deal of the history and the mapping of the region into the stories. Plus, their frequent visits to abandoned stone age native villages added depth and a feeling of spookiness and folklore.
Time gets lost in these stories which are really snapshots of wild nature experiences--not linear travelogue journal entries. While it is difficult to pinpoint dates, ages of the children and when the action occurs--in the end it doesn't matter. To me, the way Blanchet tells the story is perfect. The author captured her unusual adventurous life beautifully. The listener comes away with a strong feeling for and understanding of a life lived right on the very edge of wildness. Engaging.
33 of 38 people found this review helpful
M. Wylie Blanchet wrote this memoir in 1961 when she was 70 years old. It is not to be missed if you love adventure, nature, and the sea. After her husband died and left her with 5 young children, the author would take the family's 25 foot boat out each summer, from June to October, up and down the British Columbia coast with the children. They anchored in little known coves, camped and barbecued fresh caught fish on the beaches, climbed the cliffs, met and visited with the locals, of whom there were not very many, and yet all of whom were truly memorable.
'Capi', as she was known, as captain of the Caprice, gave her children the most amazing summers and adventures imaginable. Capi skirted and maneuvered dangerous inlets, climbed slippery moss covered granite, dealt with a sick and injured child, and always seemed to rise to the occasion. When the boat engine faltered, she either fixed it herself or rowed the boat to a harbor from their dinghy. She was amazingly capable. She was a wonderful mother. I envied and admired her as she described each adventure, one after another. I, myself, am not comfortable around the sea and not very brave when on my own. I so wish I could be more like this amazing woman. I wish I could conquer my fears.
The narration of this book is just about as perfect as I could have hoped for. Heather Henderson captured the personality and voice of Capi to a tee. She added greatly to my listening pleasure and fun.
The Curve of Time was Blanchet's only book. Supposedly, this book has never left the top ten favorite lists in British Columbia since it was written. It is now on my top ten list of favorites, and I know I will listen to it again. I loved it that much!
12 of 15 people found this review helpful