What the Heart Knows theme of authors’ afternoon Sunday

August 16, 2018   ·   0 Comments

By Constance Scrafield

Now in her 29th year of setting standards for a good book store, BookLore owner Nancy Frater is hosting the next authors’ afternoon Sunday in Mulmur Township.

This august event will take place at the Foley barn on the southeast corner of 10 Sideroad and 1st Line this Sunday, August 19 at 1:00 p.m. sharp and continue until 4:00 p.m.  Conversation and readings with three famous Canadian authors, refreshments and libations could not be more pleasant for a late summer’s Sunday afternoon.

Dr. Brian Goldman, well-known CBC broadcaster with his intensely interesting series, White Coat, Black Art brings us his new book, Power of Kindness.

In a television interview, Dr. Goldman said, “The family of a patient told me that I had been unkind to their father. If they had said I was incompetent, they might not have known what they were talking about but when they said I was unkind, they did know.”

The criticism struck an unexpected chord and he took it to heart, going on a quest within his own world of medicine to take psychological empathy tests, MRI’s, to look for the empathy impulse, as it were in himself.

He followed this by researching the kindness in other people and the means by which one person can be kind to others, finally drawing down a list of ways to acknowledge the discomfort or suffering of others and suggesting ways in which to help.

The Power of Kindness demonstrates pretty clearly that it brings out the best in people when they begin to think empathetically. Even taking money out the equation, he shows convincingly that kindness is easier than unkindness and a much better way of life.

Joanna Goodman leads her readers through the horrors of a dark and, hence, buried point in Quebecois history just over 60 years ago, recent enough that many of its victims are still alive.

Her book, Home for Unwanted Girls, tells the tale of a 15-year-old unwed mother and her daughter, inevitably separated at the daughter’s birth, their struggle and eventual victory to be reunited. This novel’s added importance is that it exposes the shadow of the Duplessis era when all the orphanages in Quebec were re-defined as mental institutions, meaning that young children, even babies, all of average or better intelligence, were now regarded as mental patients.

The reason for this outrage was money. The federal government was funding such institutions at three times the amount it was giving orphanages.

Said Ms. Goodman in an interview with the Citizen, “The church, government, doctors colluded to line their pockets. It’s a story that hasn’t really been told anywhere. People have never heard about it. It’s been under the radar for 50 years.

“This book is also a story about a mother and her daughter, [who lives through the hardships of the Duplessis debacle] about overcoming everything. It’s relating to the mother and the daughter.”

Scott Thornley comes to us with three books, actually, and a fourth at the publisher’s. With an induction to the Royal Canadian Academy of the Arts for his multi award-winning designs through his marketing company, Scott Thornley + Company, the firm he founded some 20 years ago, and the Order of Canada, Mr. Thornley has turned his attention to Detective Inspector MacNiece, a homicide detective of Mr. Thornley’s invention and the protagonist of his first novel, Erasing Memory, rapidly followed by Ambitious City and Raw Bones. These are murder mysteries written by an author who had never read the genre.

However, writing – and just as gratifying – publishing are addictive (in a good way, we hope) and Mr. Thornley has said in other interviews: “I am in a relationship with these characters. When you are in a relationship with people you admire, it’s difficult to put them on a shelf.”

This no doubt indicates there will more MacNiece novels to come.

The authors’ afternoon, What the Heart Knows, is set for this Sunday, August 19 at the Foley barn corner of 10 Sideroad and 1st Line Mulmur at 1:00 sharp. Tickets are $35 each and can be purchased online at or in person at the Mulmur Township Office on 2nd Line East (Terra Nova), BookLore at 121 First Street Orangeville, or the Shelburne Public Library at 201 Owen Sound Street.

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