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From the archives

The Other Side of “Irish Eyes”

Brian Mulroney abroad and at home

The Ramble

Memories from the PMO

Vintage Years

Two political memoirs

Norman Snider

Norman Snider is a Toronto-based journalist and screenwriter. His latest essay collection is The Roaring Eighties and Other Good Times (Exile Editions, 2008).

Articles by
Norman Snider

The Muse Wore a Low-Cut Blouse

W.P. Kinsella’s posthumous book reveals a writer more cynical than his famous baseball novel might suggest January 2017
William Patrick Kinsella died, at a moment of his own choosing, with the help of a physician in September 2016. Back in 1982, Kinsella published his most famous novel, the baseball tale Shoeless Joe. His folksy adult fantasy story was a writer’s home run. A laser shot, out of the yard. Kinsella’s book went through more than 30 printings in paperback in no time at…

Decline and Fall of a Tough Guy

Virility and violence are at the centre of Nino Ricci’s new novel. November 2015
Most writers of fiction find it impossible to make a respectable living entirely from their book sales. For many years now, teaching college has been their preferred way of staying afloat. As a result, the campus novel, from Herzog to Blue Angel, in this time of mandatory accreditation, has developed one of the more important themes of the age:…

A History of Violence

Clifford Jackman’s debut novel unpacks an American addiction July–August 2015
The greatest hero of pop culture, from The Last of the Mohicans to American Sniper, is the gunfighter. Whether he is an outlaw, a town marshal, a private eye, a gangster, a soldier or a James Bond secret agent—or even if the character is a Charlie’s Angels–style woman—he is a hawkeye…

The Hunger Game

Stephen Marche’s roman à clef deals in money, sex and class. April 2015
“Families are always rising or falling in America,” said Nathaniel Hawthorne. The highest a family can rise, I suppose, is by establishing itself as a baronial dynasty such as the Vanderbilts or Kennedys, achieving a comfortable financial security that lasts through the generations. An astute observer of contemporary society in his Esquire magazine…

Hollywood Gothic

A cinematic journey September 2000
A few years ago, when I first journeyed to far Hollywood, The Studio, as Joyce Carol Oates portentously calls it in Blonde, put me up at the Chateau Marmont, an antique mock-Norman castle that might have been designed by Charles Addams and whose dark reputation was out of the pages of de…