(I use the first person plural not as a grandeur-deluded royal we but as the more schizophrenic authorial pronoun: My Book & I. I've spent so much time along mulling over the manuscript over the lasts five years that it has become welded to my identity, much like the carbuncular second head that grows atop Richard E. Grant's shoulder in How To Get Ahead in Advertising.)
Seriously, though, I got the first "review" of my book yesterday. I put the word in quotes because it appears in a magazine, and one that I've written for in the past, so it was always bound to be a soft-touch description of the book rather than a hard-hitting analysis. (If the reviewer truly hated the book, the editors would have likely just not run the review.) Still, it appears in the April issue of Canadian Geographic (read by over a million Canucks, according to recent industry stats), and so I am thrilled with the coverage and promotion. It runs as follows:
David Leach presents a vivid look at what happens when adventure races turn deadly. Sharp and descriptive writing plunges the reader into the icy waters of the Bay of Fundy on June 1, 2002, when crashing waves and stormy winds claimed the life of René Arseneault, a 22-year-old amateur athlete from Rothesay, N.B. Drawing on dozens of interviews and years of painstaking research, Leach provides a nail-biting account of the fateful day and explores the science of hypothermia in minute detail. Along the way, he asks tough questions about what drives people to compete in extreme sports, whether true adventure can be bought and sold and how much responsibility organizers of adventure races should bear when nature triumphs over humans.I'm hoping that the review will be the push that helps me—or rather, us—climb the rungs on Amazon.ca and get over the #570,000 mark.
—Geoff Dembicki, Canadian Geographic, April 2008