➼ [Reading] ➾ Late Nights on Air By Elizabeth Hay ➱ – Transportjobsite.co.uk



10 thoughts on “Late Nights on Air

  1. says:

    If you like fast paced, action filled, plot driven novels, this this is not your book However, if you, like myself, love beautiful prose, slowly mounting realizations, characters you come to know and love little by little, and immersion into their lives and the story being told, grab this book and don t let go until you finish the last wonderful page.It takes place in the wilds of northern Canada in 1975, at a small radio station in Yellowknife Harry Boyd is the station manager, overseeing the quirky, independent people who work there, some of them runaways from other places and situations, some of them from the native population Five of these people form the nucleus of the novel, and four of them decide to make a 6 week, 500 mile trek through the great barrens of the north This changes all of them in unforseen ways, and sets in place the paths of their future lives.I found myself reading for their lives, as though I could only insure their happiness and safety by not taking my eyes off the page I was actually on the page with them, approving their decisions, or hoping against hope they wouldn t make the wrong ones They didn t listen.Elizabeth Hay is a magician with words, and seduces you quietly into her world, then doesn t let you go, even after turning the last page The phrase that came to her mind was the long and sudden of it We go on and on through the long months of our lives until we hit a sudden moment that stuns us That s the truth of this book.


  2. says:

    Abandoned with some relief at 66%I was born in Canada have family who moved to had some success in Yellowknife I ve consciously I m sure I read a few books where I didn t know the author s nationality read very few Canadian authors, other than Margaret Atwood and L M Montgomery I really wanted to like this book Unfortunately the language is beautiful but empty the plot if you could call it that moves at the speed of concrete Other than Harry I never cared about any of the characters and even Harry I don t care enough to flick to the end of the novel to find out what happened I didn t feel I learned much about Yellowknife s special character.Better books are waiting for me.


  3. says:

    I m surprised that this novel won the Giller Prize one of Canada s most prestigious literary awards The pacing is glacial, the characters uninteresting, and there s no real plot the whole book is a collection of situations which happen to the cast, and since we have no real reason to care about any of them there s little to make us want to turn the page Late Nights on Air is simply not compelling, and I almost didn t finish reading it.I was drawn to the book because of its premise a novel of people working together at a radio station, in the far north Canadian town of Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories, during the 1970 s There s something about the remoteness of this area that attracts me perhaps it is its quietness and desolation, which make it one of the last places on the planet where a person can truly be detached from the rest of the increasingly globalized world where it just takes a few steps to see the sparse but beautiful landscape of the tundra, largely untouched by man The same place is also unforgiving with its enormous distance to the rest of the populated country, and unrelenting weather with very cold and long winters For many, radio is the only medium with which they can communicate and stay in touch not only with the world but with their own neighbors, as conditions outside make travel either very risky or downright impossible.Elizabeth Hay does a great job with describing this setting late in the novel characters embark on a kayaking trip where we feel as if we ve gone with them, and witnessed the barren beauty of the tundra firsthand But the characters themselves are rather flat and I found myself unable to care if they experience any personal growth or not, and their various storylines often did not connect into a coherent whole One of the novel s themes which should be important but isn t is the construction of a pipeline which would run through a First Nation territory it felt heavy handed and irrelevant to the rest of the text, and failed to make any impact on me.I expected Late Nights on Air to be a novel about the North and its people, their lives and problems loneliness, poverty, concern about the environment All these themes are touched upon but not elaborated, and the fragmented nature of the book doesn t help I m sure there are better northern novels, and I m looking forward to reading them.


  4. says:

    4.5 I read my first novel by Hay, A Student of Weather, last year It was wonderfully rewarding even though it took me a month to read By contrast, I read the Giller Prize winning Late Nights on Air in half that time Most of it is set in 1975 7 in Yellowknife, a small city in Canada s Northwest Territories Here winter lasts for eight months and you can still meet with snow and frozen lakes in early July A tight knit cast gathers around the local radio station Harry and Gwen, refugees from Ontario starting new lives Dido, an alluring Dutch newsreader Ralph, the freelance book reviewer menacing Eddie and pious Eleanor.Everyone is in love with everyone else, so you get these layers of unrequited romance and a sense of exposure not just to the elements, but to the vulnerabilities of admitting one s feelings and risking professional failure The novel is also about appearances and assumptions You don t look anything like how you sound, Gwen says to Harry and the dangers of obsession Four of the station employees set out one summer to recreate the six week journey of Arctic explorer John Hornby, a trip that ends up being as wondrous as it is fraught Hay s foreshadowing is a bit heavy handed, and I found the final chapters after the expedition a slight letdown, but overall this is a marvellous story of quiet striving and dislocation I saw bits of myself in each of the characters, and I loved the extreme setting, both mosquito ridden summer and bitter winter I need to read the rest of Hay s oeuvre stat.Favorite passages Harry s professional advice to Gwen Radio was like poetry, he told her At its best it could be, while television was like a blockbuster novel one made you think and feel, the other dulled your mind To be any good you have to believe it s hard It s called creative tension And you won t be any good until you re dedicated to something outside yourself I learned that a mistake is just something you go on from Something blossoms in an unlikely place An oasis of trees miles above the treeline An arctic river warmer than any other water they d come upon The four of them bathed in the waters of the Thelon, wading out into it, almost swimming On shore they towelled themselves dry and dressed, and there was no feeling to equal the splendour of warm clothes on river cold skin.


  5. says:

    This 2007 winner of the Giller Prize is set in the mid 1970s in Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories of Canada It details the lives of the people working in the local radio station and then follows four of them as they go on a canoe trip to trace the route of John Hornby in The Barrens I m glad I came across this book, enjoyed reading it, but will have to knock one star off my eventual rating for atrocious overuse of foreshadowing.


  6. says:

    Late Nights on Air is so fantastic and nostalgic that it s like opening an old box of Kodachrome slides at an antique shop This 1970 s set story holds the spirit of Canada perfectly and is certainly worth reading.


  7. says:

    Elizabeth Hay worked as a radio broadcaster in Yellowknife forty years ago, and she revisits that isolated area in Late Nights on Air Set in 1975, it was a time when radio was being replaced by television The environment and the northern way of life was also being threatened by a proposal to cross the frozen Canadian tundra with a gas pipeline.The radio station employees are imperfect people who are searching for what they want in life Some have traveled from southern areas, hoping to find it in Yellowknife They have been disappointed in their careers and by love in the past, and are looking for a new start.Written in beautiful literary prose, the story builds slowly for the first half as Hay looks into the souls of the complicated characters at the radio station My favorite part of the book is the later part, involving four of the characters following the route of John Hornby and two companions, explorers who perished in the Barrens in the sub Arctic in 1927 The descriptions of Yellowknife and the Barrens are exquisite, with the location also becoming an important character This is a book for people who are willing to take the time to savor Elizabeth Hay s writing because it is a character driven story in an unfamiliar world.3 1 2 stars, rounded up to 4.


  8. says:

    I almost didn t finish this book The first 60 pages were tiresome to drag myself through Then Ms Hay caught me with something so Northern Canada that I was immediately hooked It was a print out of messages that CBC used to read over the air things like Joe Blogs, get in touch with the RCMP at Fort Rae for an urgent message from your brother Ron or To the Blogs family, Resolute Bay Jannie had her baby A boy, 7 lbs 2 ounces Mom and baby are doing well and say hi I lived for a short time in the Yukon and NWT in the 1970 s about the same time this novel was supposed to take place, and those messages brought me right back to listening to the radio in the north Also, many of us had our own crystal or CB radios and used them to communicate with our bases in the cities of the north I spent several hours each day on the radio.The second thing that Ms Hay was able to do was paint a wonderfully vivid picture of the tundra the Barren Lands I loved the attention to the botany.Too bad that the rest of the story didn t quite keep up Why, for example, does Ralph suddenly decide he loves Eleanore Ralph didn t even seem like a major character, and suddenly he is a huge focus.So, slow to start, great detail and feeling of the north, but characters that are a bit on the who cares side But, maybe that s just like life.


  9. says:

    You ve heard it said, hurts so good About the writing style of Elizabeth Hay, I can say cuts so soft Her words, her turn of phrase, her sweet sentence construction, it is as precise and expertly sculpted as with a sculptor s chisel or a surgeon s scalpel Yet soft The sharpest knife enters your flesh with hardly than a red line and finds its target The heart The reader s mind There are no ragged edges here The setting for this novel intrigued me right away The book was a choice in my book club, recently joined, and I thrilled to the story description of northern wild, a small group of misfits who broadcast from a radio station in a town called Yellowknife, where there is nothing but radio I was suddenly back in my days of traveling northern Canada and Alaska, and listening to a voice on the radio, passing messages from friend to friend, husband telling wife he would be home late, George telling Harry that the part he needs for his truck has arrived, and hello Shirley s baby is born Late Nights on Air has sophistication than that, and this group of radio broadcasters and technicians and managers bring with them than just the drama that flies over the air There is also the air between them And their love of the clean air about them But at the same time, there is that intimacy of community, of strangers connecting by bond of shared humanity Late Nights on Air is love story of the misfit, love story of the northern wild, love story of life, lived however we manage And like all love stories, these loves, too, die, except, perhaps, the one for the open wild A proposed gasline runs through the story like a guideline of place to cut Hay makes the incision cleanly, and from this opened place emerge the voices of the town, those who have come to it because they found they did not belong anywhere else, and those who belong there root and soul and have so through ancestry What we see in that opened place is the wilderness inside a man s, a woman s heart, and also the stunning wilderness of northern Canada, in this town called Yellowknife and far beyond It is a cruel yet beautiful world, and we are spared neither cruelty or beauty Such fine lines Hay writes her voice sounded like a tarnished silver spoon in the free and easy woods of herself constant light was like endless caffeine she seems to want to erase herself At stake was something immense, all the forms of life that lay in the path of a natural gas pipeline corridor that would rip open the Arctic, according to critics, like a razor slashing the face of Mona Lisa The girl had laced up the soft shoe of her voice Dido had a vibrancy about her, like a watered plant after a drought Such a lot to unpack from that slender gift of a sentence in the wind their voices tore like fabric And the thought came to him that it wasn t just one person who had died, but all the filaments of life connecting that person to everyone he d ever known and to every place he d ever been The sight of her did something to his heart He felt its exact location and entire size inside his chest And there, she s done it, Hay has done it thrown away all the excess, trimmed away all the fat, and left the words that describe a moment, a sensation, an image, a life exactly She has even done the remarkable, passed my personal test of expert word artist, and written both one of the best love scenes I ve read in many years and not one thing graphic or crude about it , and later, one of the most profound breaking up scenes I have ever read and not one thing graphic or crude about it, either Add for frosting on this Arctic ice cake one of the most memorable death scenes I ve encountered on written page, without a single note of melodrama about it These are typically the scenes where even the best writers fall into muck Where even the best writers die, impaled on a clich Hay shines These human lives tangle and untangle, and they tangle, too, into the wild around them, and there is great sacrifice, yet also great humanity Not in the deeds marked by medals and honors, but moments marked by one human being alleviating, for but a passing instant quickly moved into memory, the loneliness of another before both go on their way again These are the imperfect, caught lovingly in their fascinating imperfections, and made perfect by the artist who captures them so on paper for our witness Late Nights on Air is winner of the 2007 Giller Prize Elizabeth Hay is a former radio journalist, author of six other books, all of which I intend to read, and winner also of the Marian Engel Award She lives in Canada.


  10. says:

    You can t get much Canadian than this novel it is written by a former CBC employee, it involves the national radio service, there are questions of identity, there is self discovery through a wilderness trip, and it takes place in the North, mythologized by all of us southern Canadians.Two young women, Gwen and Dido, come to Yellowknife to craft lives and identities for themselves through working on the radio I related to Gwen s search for herself through her radio work, having worked a very public volunteer job where it was necessary to create a public persona for myself How useful that persona was it created a framework upon which to hang the various facets of my life to display them to those around me, but most importantly to myself.And where else do you search for yourself The North, of course, a mysterious place to those of us who live pressed up against the 49th parallel, much closer to our American neighbours than to the vast majority of Canadian territory The people, the wildlife, and the landscape of the Barrens are beautifully invoked, with the canoe trip of discovery forming a rather dreamy portion of the plot line It made me wish that I was one of the adventurous folks who went on camping trips, canoeing in the wilderness, identifying the delicate wildflowers and observing the skittish caribou I have friends who do these kinds of things and I long to have the ability and the courage.Running in the background of Late Nights is the whole question of the MacKenzie Valley Pipeline Project and government business relationships with the aboriginal populations In that way, it is a timely book for today, as struggles ensue over several pipeline projects and relations with our native populations are in turmoil On a personal note, two situations in this book got me thinking about a woman that I was friends with long ago She became involved with a very possessive man and I think she mistook it for love as opposed to power I often wonder about her, as when I last talked with her it was obvious that he was controlling her to an extreme extent and I was very worried I was cut out of her life rather quickly, as he was busy separating her from her friends and family Recently we had a significant milestone school reunion and the organizer sent out lots of email to see who all she could round up to celebrate My former friend, a gentle, polite woman, replied in a rather hostile manner and asked that she never be contacted again From this, I assume that she is still with her controlling partner and still acquiescing to his wishes I continue to wonder how she is, where she is, whether she will ever escape.Perhaps that is why this book left me in a melancholy mood But for me, that melancholy feeling is a desirable one in literature and I enjoyed wallowing in it for the remainder of the evening.


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Late Nights on Air download Late Nights on Air, read online Late Nights on Air, kindle ebook Late Nights on Air, Late Nights on Air d99ae3fbf6ad The Eagerly Anticipated Novel From The Bestselling Author Of A Student Of Weather And Garbo Laughs Harry Boyd, A Hard Bitten Refugee From Failure In Toronto Television, Has Returned To A Small Radio Station In The Canadian North There, In Yellowknife, In The Summer Of , He Falls In Love With A Voice On Air, Though The Real Woman, Dido Paris, Is Both A Surprise And Even Than He Imagined Dido And Harry Are Part Of The Cast Of Eccentric, Utterly Loveable Characters, All Transplants From Elsewhere, Who Form An Unlikely Group At The Station Their Loves And Longings, Their Rivalries And Entanglements, The Stories Of Their Pasts And What Brought Each Of Them To The North, Form The Centre One Summer, On A Canoe Trip Four Of Them Make Into The Arctic Wilderness Following In The Steps Of The Legendary Englishman John Hornby, Who, Along With His Small Party, Starved To Death In The Barrens In, They Find The Balance Of Love Shifting, Much As The Balance Of Power In The North Is Being Changed By The Proposed Mackenzie Valley Gas Pipeline, Which Threatens To Displace Native People From Their LandElizabeth Hay Has Been Compared To Annie Proulx, Alice Hoffman, And Isabel Allende, Yet She Is Uniquely Herself With Unforgettable Characters, Vividly Evoked Settings, In This New Novel, Hay Brings To Bear Her Skewering Intelligence Into The Frailties Of The Human Heart And Her Ability To Tell A Spellbinding Story Written In Gorgeous Prose, Laced With Dark Humour, Late Nights On Air Is Hay S Most Seductive And Accomplished Novel Yet On The Shortest Night Of The Year, A Golden Evening Without End, Dido Climbed The Wooden Steps To Pilot S Monument On Top Of The Great Rock That Formed The Heart Of Old Yellowknife In The Netherlands The Light Was Long And Gradual Too, But Meadowy, Watery, Or Else Hazier, Depending On Where You Were Here, It Was Subarctic Desert, Virtually Unpopulated, And The Light Was Uniformly ClearOn The Road Below, A Small Man In A Black Beret Was Bending Over His Tripod Just As Her Father Used To Bend Over His Tape Recorder Her Father S Voice Had Become The Wallpaper Inside Her Skull, He D Made A Home For Himself There As Improvised And Unexpected As These Little Houses On The Side Of The Rock Houses With Histories Of Instability, Of Changing From Gambling Den To Barber Shop To Sheet Metal Shop To Private Home, And Of Being Moved From One Part Of Town To Another Since They Had No Foundations From Late Nights On Air From The Hardcover Edition