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Eve Lazarus

23 September 2014 | Email This Post Email This Post | Print This Post Print This Post

The author and historian Eve Lazarus discusses her recent book Sensational Vancouver (Anvil Press, 2014), the people and houses in Vancouver’s past, and more, with Joseph Planta.


Sensational Vancouver by Eve Lazarus (Anvil Press, 2014).

Click to buy this book from Amazon.ca: Sensational Vancouver


Text of introduction by Joseph Planta:

I am Planta: On the Line, in Vancouver, at TheCommentary.ca.

A terrific book came out this summer, Sensational Vancouver. Its author Eve Lazarus joins me again to talk about what was a hit on the bestsellers list, spending many weeks as number one. It’s a generously illustrated book that shows Vancouver mainly in the first half of the 20th century, as it once was. The view that we get was that Vancouver was quite a colourful, seedy, and dramatic town. We learn of the turmoil within the Vancouver Police Department, as officers to the chiefs themselves were confronted with charges of corruption. We meet colourful characters from the detective Joe Ricci who walked amidst Chinatown’s opium dens, gambling houses, and brothels, as well as bootleggers who made fortunes from running rum. We also meet noted artists, and remarkable women in our history. What Ms. Lazarus does is look at people like Ricci, and Valerie Jerome, Mary Livingstone, and Nellie Yip Quong, through their houses, some of which are still standing. It’s a really engaging history, much like her previous books Sensational Victoria, and At Home with History: The Untold Secrets of Greater Vancouver’s Heritage Houses, which she was on with back in 2007. And there’s murder too, ghost stories, and discussions of the sort of architecture style that we’ve seen in this part of the world. Eve Lazarus is an award winning author, who is part of a great group of active local historians, who write passionately about Vancouver’s past. A lot of them are part of the new book, Vancouver Confidential, edited by John Belshaw, that looks at the city’s dark side. That book, like Sensational Vancouver, is published by Anvil Press. Visit www.evelazarus.com for more. There’s an event next Sunday, 28 September 2014 at Word Vancouver as well. Please welcome back to the Planta: On the Line program, Eve Lazarus; Ms. Lazarus, good morning.

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