Going Inside.

NON FICTION BOOK REVIEW  

458  words

Title: Going Inside;  Alan S. Kesselheim; Publisher: McClelland 
& Stewart.; ISBN: 0-7710-4450-X;  Hardcover, 282 pages,, $28.99

Reviewer: A. T. Connellan, "Between the covers of "Going Inside" 
we are treated to an over-the-shoulder view of their experience 
that is vivified by Kesselheim's words, Zitzer's photographs and 
bound-up by their determination and humor." 

Tale of modern day North Canadian adventure thrills

"Life's too short to dance with ugly women." That was the politically 
incorrect legend on the tee-shirt of the metis who served them 
bannock and moose stew on the banks of the Peace River, but as 
the author and his wife had already discovered; life is too short for 
a lot of things. 
        
With their marriage on thin ice, Alan Kesselheim and his wife Marypat 
Zitzer had decided on one last great wilderness adventure, to test 
their relationship, friendship and marriage. 

Their plan was to launch a canoe on the Smokey River at the town of 
Grande Cache in Northern Alberta, join the mighty Peace River 
eastbound, and by autumn reach a winter-over at a fish camp near 
Fond du Lac at the eastern end of Saskatchewan's Lake Athabasca. 
In the spring they were to continue to a terminus at Baker Lake on 
Hudson Bay in the Northwest Territory. 

The North is a land of extremes, and the couple encountered all of 
the complications of northern travel. Mosquitoes and black flies were 
commonplace, as were howling winds and bitter cold, and through it 
all the continual tension brought about by the frustration at their 
marriage-long inability to have a child. This changed with the onset of 
winter and the discovery of Marypat's pregnancy, and with it, a 
determination to complete the journey as planned. 

Up there people treat each other differently than those "outside."  I've 
experienced it, and Alan Kesselheim has the ability to put it into words 
better than most. He has an eye and an ear for the subtleties and 
incongruities of those relationships, and an appreciation of the contrasts 
that epitomize life in the north. His word portrait of RCMP Constable Brian 
Van Stone is startlingly accurate. 

The author is well qualified to spellbind us. He has done it in earlier 
books: Water and Sky; and Reflections of a Northern Year. He works 
as an outdoor educator and expedition leader, lectures on the northern 
wilderness, and writes regularly for a number of outdoor magazines. 

Between the covers of "Going Inside" we are treated to an 
over-the-shoulder view of their experience that is vivified by 
Kesselheim's words, Zitzer's photographs and bound-up by their 
determination and humor. 

Get a comfortable chair, a big cup of coffee, and immerse yourself 
in their tale of a daring 3,500 kilometer accomplishment that will 
have you unwilling to stop long enough to let the dog out.  


Back to Non Fiction Book Reviews index

Back to Home page