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The Voyageur Canadian Biographies 5-Book Bundle

The Firebrand / Mrs. Simcoe's Diary / The Scalpel, the Sword / The Men of the Last Frontier / Pilgrims of the Wild

by Grey Owl; Sydney Gordon; Mary Quayle Innis; Elizabeth Posthuma Simcoe; William Kilbourn
introduction by James Polk; Michael Gnarowski; Julie Allan; Norman Bethune Allan; Susan Ostrovsky & Ronald Stagg
foreword by Hugh Eayrs

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list price: $33.99
published: 2014
publisher: Dundurn Press

Voyageur Classics is a series of special versions of Canadian classics, with added material and new introductory notes. In this bundle we find five biographical and autobiographical titles that shed light on some of Canada’s most important figures at crucial times in the country’s development. William Kilbourn brings to life the rebel Canadian hero William Lyon Mackenzie: able political editor, first mayor of Toronto, and the gadfly of the House of Assembly. The Scalpel, the Sword celebrates the turbulent career of Dr. Norman Bethune, a brilliant surgeon, campaigner for socialized medicine, and communist. Elizabeth Simcoe’s diary, describing Canada from 1791 to 1796, is history written as it was being made, an account instilled with excitement and delight. And finally, two titles by the legendary Grey Owl tell his own astonishing story and advocate for a closeness with and respect for nature. Each of these books is an essential classic of Canadian literature.


  • The Firebrand
  • Mrs. Simcoe’s Diary
  • The Scalpel, the Sword
  • The Men of the Last Frontier
  • Pilgrims of the Wild
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About the Authors

Grey Owl

Grey Owl (1888-1938), an Englishman, immigrated to Canada as Archibald Belaney in 1906 and quickly constructed an identity as a Native, assuming the Ojibwa name Wa-sha-quon-asin and eventually settling in Saskatchewan on Ajawaan Lake. He spread his message of preservation through multiple bestsellers, including The Men of the Last Frontier, The Adventures of Sajo and Her Beaver People, and Tales of an Empty Cabin.

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James Polk

James Polk has written on animal story writers in articles, reviews, and a book, Wilderness Writers. He was publishing policy adviser in the Ontario government and is the author of a novel, short stories, and a play. He lives in Toronto.

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Michael Gnarowski

Michael Gnarowski co-edited The Making of Modern Poetry in Canada, compiled The Concise Bibliography of English Canadian Literature, and edited the Critical Views on Canadian Writers series for McGraw-Hill Ryerson. Gnarowski is professor emeritus at Carleton University in Ottawa.

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Hugh Eayrs

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Julie Allan

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Norman Bethune Allan

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Susan Ostrovsky

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Sydney Gordon

Sydney Gordon (1915-1984) was a childhood friend and collaborator of Ted Allan in Montreal.

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Mary Quayle Innis

Mary Quayle Innis (1899-1972) was the author of several books, including An Economic History of Canada, Changing Canada, and Travellers West. She was the dean of women at University College, University of Toronto, for a number of years, and she was married to noted economics historian, Harold A. Innis.

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Elizabeth Posthuma Simcoe

Elizabeth Posthuma Simcoe (1766-1850) was the wife of John Graves Simcoe, the first lieutenant-governor of Upper Canada.
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William Kilbourn

William Kilbourn (1926-1995) was a noted author, activist, and Toronto politician. He was a Toronto alderman and the founding chairman of the Humanities Division at York University. His books include Toronto Observed: Its Architecture, Patrons, and History and Toronto Remembered: A Celebration of the City.

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Ronald Stagg

Ronald Stagg has taught at Ryerson University for over thirty years, specializing in Canadian history. He has written on subjects ranging from the eighteenth to the early twentieth century and served ten years as chair of Ryerson's history department. He lives in Toronto.

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