Dark Times

Dark Times is a collection of thirteen stories by Canadian authors.
The book was the result of a cross-Canada contest for the best short
stories about young people's experience of loss and grief, Dark Times
s a superb anthology about a topic that often remains hidden but is crucial
in the development of a child's sense of identity. The stories develop
highly contemporary situations: a First Nations boy mourns the death
of his mother; a boyfriend's death takes a girl through the five stages of grief;
a destitute family loses their home; a daughter loses a parent when her
leaves; a fetal alcohol syndrome child is lost to his family when he
is sent to prison; a boy loses the brother he loves to mental illness; the death
of a small child challenges a girl's belief in God; and a young girl discovers
her father in an affair and confronts him with devastating results.

Although the stories sound depressing, they aren't. Most of them leave
the reader with the sense that things will get better, that the grieving will pass.

Editor Ann Walsh's story is about a a girl coping with the loss of her grandmother to Alzheimer's disease. This story has been used in many anthologies and reading texts.

Other authors include: Sarah Ellis, Lee Maracle, Alison Lohans, Diana Aspin,
Carolyn Pogue, Gina Rozon, Jessie Mae Keller, Libby Kennedy, Donna
R. Gamache, Patricia McCowan, Betty Jane Hegerat and Carrie Mac.

Published by Ronsdale Press, Vancouver

Winds Through Time

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Winds Through Time; An Anthology of Canadian Historical Young Adult Fiction

ISBN13: 9780888783844
Dundurn Press


For this young adult anthology, Ann Walsh has selected fifteen captivating stories written by well-kknown authors from across the country. Each contributor has penned a dramatic account of a real episode in Canadian history. From mine disasters to scarlet fever epidemics, from the Great War to the Gold Rush, these writers breathe life into the tales of our ancestors and tell stories only history could have imagined. Dedicated to the beloved W.O. Mitchell and bringing to life his words, these stories will give you pause to remember your own history and make you eager to seek out other works by these gifted Canadians.

Your Time, My time

ISBN13: 9780888782199

Publisher: Dundurn Press


Moving with her mother from Vancouver to Wells, British Columbia, Elizabeth Connell longs for the excitement of the city and her father, brother, and friends left behind. While she is in the peaceful graveyard of nearby Barkerville she finds a small gold ring that has very special powers. By twisting the ring on her finger, Elizabeth is transported to the nineteenth century during the heyday of the gold rush. Caught between her present life with family and friends and a love in the past, Elizabeth learns more than history.

This past summer, 2009, friends gathered in Wells, BC., the setting of this book, to congratulate both book and author on being in print for twenty five years. I would post a photo if I knew how and if any of them had turned out well. It was very hot, so hot the icing was sliding off the cake.

The Ghost of Soda Creek

Price: $11.99
ISBN13: 9781550028300

Publisher: Dundurn Press


Moving to Soda Creek, a former Gold Rush boomtown in the Cariboo region of interior British Columbia, Kelly Linden and her father try to begin their lives again after a tragic family accident.


By The Skin of His Teeth

This one is the third in the Moses.... trilogy and an excellent book. Or so I think. It also is based on a real life murder that happened during the gold rush in British Columbia during the late 1800s.

The year is 1870, the place Barkerville, British Columbia, where dreams glitter with gold. Racial tensions run high when a Chinese man is found stabbed to death on the steps outside his restaurant. The accused is a French Canadian named Henri Tremblay, and the main witness is a Chinese immigrant called Ah Ohn.

In By the Skin of His Teeth, seventeen-year-old Ted MacIntosh, whom author Ann Walsh showcased earlier in Moses, Me, and Murder and The Doctor’s Apprentice, befriends a young Chinese boy despite the intense prejudice seething in the frontier town. Ted suffers intimidation and violence at the hands of the cruel, arrogant Tremblay and his cronies, but with courage and conviction the young man stands up for what he believes and defends his Chinese friend. Tremblay and his crew, though, ultimately harass and scare the entire Chinese community into silence and altered testimony. At the trial Ted is outraged and fights to reveal the truth, and we are hurled toward a controversial conclusion as the jury delivers its verdict.


Price: $11.99
ISBN13: 9781550028294
Dundurn Press


Shabash was nominated for Ontario's Silver Birch Award for its sensitive exploration of the cultural differences that unite and divide and the prejudices within, and against, minority communities. As a Sikh living in a small mill town in the interior of British Columbia, Rana knows he is "different"; in fact, he is the first Sikh in Dinway to join the hockey team. But what started as a whim becomes a determined struggle, and Rana persists, making the team, and meets Les, who becomes a new friend. But the jibes from his teammates and community members continue. Finally, just before the most important game of the season, an extraordinary event interrupts the lives of everyone in Dinway, and Rana explodes in anger, risking his membership and the respect he has earned over the hockey season.

Shabash! is often used in conjunction with a unit on racism. A teachers' guide is available through the publisher.

An 'Our Choice' award from the Canadian Children's Book Centre. Also nominated for the Silver Birch Award.

The Doctor's Apprentice

ISBN13: 9781550026337
Dundurn Press


Ann Walsh‘s sequel to Moses, Me and Murder (Pacific Educational Press) continues the adventures of Ted, now 14. Still tormented by the ghost of murderer James Barry, Ted apprentices to the eccentric doctor J.B. Wilkinson, whose dependency on opium for his patients and for his own demons reveals a past intertwined with the life and death of an enigmatic woman named Sophia Cameron.

• Shortlisted for the Geoffrey Bilson Prize for Canadian Children's Historical Literature and the B.C. Book Prizes (Sheila Egoff Award.)

Moses, Me and Murder!

Moses, Me & Murder
Ann Walsh

This popular children's novel is based on a real unsolved murder that took place in Barkerville, B.C. during the 1860s Gold Rush. The quick-paced and engrossing story brings to life an exciting era of British Columbia history as its hero, Ted, struggles with his doubts and fears when he tries to solve the mysterious murder of a young man on his way to the gold fields. When the story presents an actual trial conducted by a historical B.C. judge, young Ted must consider the issue of capital punishment.

An appendix of historical notes gives a brief sketch of each real character, including Judge Begbie, who was known as a "hanging judge." Now in its fourth printing, this book is widely used in elementary classrooms.

"A readable and informative novel of the Gold Rush era."-B.C. Library Association Reporter

  • Recommended for Language Arts 6-9 in Saskatchewan
  • Canadian Children's Book Centre "Our Choice"
  • Shortlisted for the Geoffrey Bilson Prize for Canadian Children's Historical Literature
  • B.C. School Library Book Purchase Plan

Fiction for readers aged 7-11
Paper, 128 pp, 5-1/2 x 8-1/2
20 b&w illustrations, appendix
ISBN 0-88865-059-0 $9.95


"Moses..." was my 'left over' book. While researching Your Time, My Time, my first book, I came across the story of Charles Blessing and his oddly shaped gold nugget. Charles disappeared on his way into Barkervillle, in 1867. He came, as did many visitors to British Columbia, to search for gold. Barkerville was the heart of the gold fields, and at the time Charles set out on his journey, it was the largest town in the province. This was too good a story to leave sitting in the history books, so I researched it thoroughly and wrote about it in Moses, Me and Murder!

Charles' friendship with Moses, a barber, and his disappearance on the Cariboo Road are well known stories in Barkerville's history. When I wrote the tale, I added a fictional character, Ted, who helps Moses and the local constabulary, bring Charles' murderer to justice.

I have told the story of Charles, Moses and Ted in many classrooms across BC, and I always enjoy sharing this bit of our history with students. Charles' grave is well marked on the road into Barkerville, and many of the students who visit Barkerville tell me they stop by and pay their respects. As do I.

Horse Power

Horse Power

(Orca Book, 2007)

A sequel to Flower Power (Orca Currents, 2005) this novel takes a reluctant 12 year old Callie, her mother, grandmother, assorted Singing Grannies, weekend bikers and members of a First Nations Drumming circle to protest the closing of a small rural school. When the media, the chairman of the school board and the police arrive, the situation becomes confrontational. Fast paced, funny and geared to middle-grade reluctant readers, this novel deals with a problem that today is being faced by more and more rural communities.


In my area of British Columbia, schools are closing. These are usually small rural schools, places that form the heart of tiny communties scattered across our rural areas. But small schools are expensive to operate, enrollment is dropping and the cost of heating oil has skyrocketed. This book is based on the closure of such a school about 75 km. from my home. The community protested and, although the school was initially closed in spite of the protest, it has recently reopened as a K-4 school.

In Horse Power, as in real life, people working together towards a common goal, made a difference.

Beginnings, Stories of Canada's Past

Ann Walsh has selected fourteen captivating stories written by accomplished authors from across Canada for this historical anthology. Each of the stories focuses on a "first-time" historical experience, such as the meeting between natives and Europeans at Fort St. James; the ship carrying filles du roi as brides for the settlers of New France; the first elections in which women in Canada were allowed to vote; the first gourmet meal cooked in a CPR rail camp for Cornelius Van Horne; a mine disaster in the Crowsnest Pass, with the subsequent introduction of safety lamps for the miners; and an account of the "Home Children" first sent to Canada during the nineteenth century, supposedly for a better life, but often to work in slave-labour conditions. Many of the stories feature real historical people, and others introduce fictional characters to depict the historical situations of earlier times. The volume also contains an appendix with substantial accounts of the historical context of each story. The contributors are Ann Walsh, Barbara Haworth-Attard, Beverley Brenna, Constance Horne, Margaret Thompson, Anne Metikosh, Carolyn Pogue, Margaret Florczak, Jean Rae Baxter, Catherine Goodwin, Victoria Miles, Susan Lee, Laura Morgan and Cathy Beveridge. A vibrant introduction to Canada's history through the eyes of some of its youngest participants.

Ann Walsh is well known for her many historical novels and short stories for young adults. She is the editor of Winds Through Time (Beach Holme, 1998), a best-selling young adult anthology of historical fiction, and the author of The Doctor's Apprentice (Beach Holme 1998), Shabash! (Beach Holme, 1994), Across the Stillness (Press Porcepic, 1993), The Ghost of Soda Creek (Press Porcepic, 1990), Moses, Me and Murder (Pacific Educational Press, 1988), Your Time, My Time (Press Porcepic, 1984). She makes her home in Williams Lake, B.C.

Winds Through Time, a collection of stories about Canada's past was published, I felt that there were still many more stories about Canada's history, stories about brave young people who did unusual things, who made their mark on our past. The publisher, Ronsdale Press, asked me to contribute a story as well as collecting the other stories and editing them. The Rule of Silence is my story about the Canada's youngest prisoner. He was a nine year old French Canadian boy who was sentenced to three years in the then brand new Kingston Penitentiary.

Forestry A-Z

Book Cover

By authors: Ann Walsh, Kathleen Cook Waldron Illustrated by: Bob Warick
Orca Book Publishers

Pub Date:
In stock.
Price: $19.95

In the early days of logging and for many modern forest workers, quitting time means heading back to camp. In camp, crews clean up, eat, get their tools ready for the next day and, perhaps, wash their sweaty socks.

How is plywood made? What are dozer boats? How has forestry changed in the last century? These questions and dozens more are answered in Forestry A-Z, both in the informative and fascinating text and in the beautiful photographs. In writing this book, Kathleen Cook Waldron and Ann Walsh consulted dozens of experts. In illustrating it, Bob Warick traveled British Columbia capturing our forests and forestry through the seasons.

CM Magazine - May 2, 2008
Quill & Quire - May 1, 2008
"...a worthwhile addition to school and public library non-fiction collections."
Resource Links - June 1, 2008
"...a welcome book for school libraries."
Deakin Newsletter - June 1, 2008
"...clear, well laid out, offers useful information and has an attractive format."
School Library Journal - August 1, 2008
"...beautifully photographed.....the information is solid and the language is clear."

Ann and Kathleen; photo from back cover of book

Photo by Bob Warick

About Writing Forestry A-Z

Writing is a lonely business, especially if you live in a small town, as I do. I met Kathleen Cook -Waldron through the Writers' Union of Canada and we became friends. We thought that if we wrote a book together we would have an excuse to see each other more often (Kathleen and I both live in small towns, but not the same small town. Our homes are about 130 km apart.)

The idea of an alphabet book about forestry appealed to us. It is one of Canada's largest industries, and both Kathleen and I live in forestry towns, We both had friends who worked in the industry, and the 'letter by letter' format of an ABC book was something we felt we could work on individually, then meet once a week to compare our results.

We began meeting at a restaurant half way between our homes, on the shores of Lac La Hache. The staff at Clancy's were very good to us, allowing us to linger over our French waffles in a quiet back corner and work. We tried not to interrupt the other diners, but occasionally we did produce shouts of "I've got K" or "Yes! That's perfect for Z." We didn't always meet once a week; real life interferes with writing and sometimes it was months before we got back to the book. But we never gave up.

Many people helped us, from giving initial input to proof reading the final drafts. We had horse loggers, water loggers, saw operators, tree planters, ecologists and many more who gave of their time to help this book become a reality.

We hope you enjoy it. It took years and many French waffles to complete the text, and then many more years to find a publisher who felt it was a worthwhile project. Luckily Orca shared our vision; Forestry A-Z became a reality in the Spring of 2008.


Flower Power

Flower Power (Orca Currents)
By author: Ann Walsh
Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date:
Price: $9.95


Callie’s mother has chained herself to the neighbor’s tree and is living inside the treehouse. She refuses to come down until the neighbor, Mr. Wilson, agrees to leave the tree standing. Soon reporters arrive to interview Callie about her mother’s protest. Callie doesn’t want to talk to anyone. More chaos ensues when Callie’s grandmother invites the “singing grannies” to help save the tree, the neighbor’s biker friends come to her aid, and Callie’s friends show up to try to get themselves on TV. Callie needs to figure out how to get her mother to come down from the tree so that her life can return to normal.

About writing Flower Power

My mother was an environmentalist. She participated in the earliest recycling program in Vancouver (BC) in the 1960s. I used to fly down to visit her with a suitcase full of clean, squashed tin cans which she welcomed as if they were precious metal, not just fodder for the recycling depot. As mothers often do, Mom sometimes embarrassed me with her enthusiasm and outspoken opinions.

A few years ago, I began thinking about writing a series of books with a young heroine whose mother really embarrasses her. So I created Dian (short for Dianthus, a carnation-liike flower) a strong woman with definite ideas about what needs to be fixed in this world. Her actions make her daughter, Callie (short for Calendula, another flower) writhe with embarrassment, yet by the end of the book, Callie finds that she is oddly proud of her eccentric mother. The title comes from the characters' names (all the women in Callie's family were named for flowers, for generations back) and from the idea that everyone, even 12 year old girls with peculiar names and a more peculiar mother, can make a difference in this world.