Kudos to Chatelaine and Dove soap for recognizing that all women are beautiful

When I received the June/July 2019 issue of Chatelaine magazine in my mailbox this week I was a little taken aback—at first. Featured on the cover of the annual swimsuit issue (a cliché if there ever was one) is a full-bodied woman of indeterminate age wearing a coral-coloured swimsuit, a straw sunhat, and a huge smile. The more I thought about it and went through its pages, the bigger the smile grew on my own face. It takes courage for a major magazine to turn the tables on the media's…

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Kudos to Chatelaine and Dove soap for recognizing that all women are beautiful
Different covers were released in different areas.

Leader of French network spying on German military installations during WW2 was a beautiful, courageous young woman

When I started reading Madame Fourcade's Secret War by New York Times' bestselling author Lynne Olson, I assumed it was a novel of historical fiction—a story built around the experiences of true-life heroes of the French Resistance during World War II. To my surprise and ultimately much more rewarding to read, it turned out to be non-fiction. This book is a history lesson that is long overdue. We've read a lot of stories over the years about the bravery and heroic efforts of French citizens who risked their lives and…

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Story of Lithuanian struggle after the war is a fascinating read

Whever I read a book like Under Ground by Antanas Sileika  I'm reminded that we won the lottery being born in Canada. The rights, freedoms and privileges that we enjoy as Canadians are shared by so few in the world. After World War II, the three Baltic states of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia were basically abandoned by the Allies and left to be plundered by the Russians. After being pummelled both physically, morally and politically by the Germans during the war and then the Red Army, Lithuania was a country…

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The Alice Network shines a light on women’s bravery during both wars

It's natural when we enjoy a book to follow up by reading another book by the same author. After reading Kate Quinn's The Huntress I couldn't wait to dig into her earlier book, The Alice Network. Quinn has a gift for being able to weave real historical events into fictional accounts with characters based on real-life individuals and composites. The story spans a period of several decades with most of the action taking place late in World War I and the years prior to and just after World War II. The plot…

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Chelsea Handler is getting ready for love

The election of Donald Trump in 2016 affected comedienne, writer and late-night talk show host Chelsea Handler so profoundly she altered her entire life to cope with the implications. If you've ever watched her late night show Chelsea Lately, listened to her standup routine or read any of her books, you'll know Handler is smart, beautiful, opinionated and abrasive. Turning forty and the election of Trump forced her to address an inner turmoil that she'd been ignoring her entire life. She suddenly realized that America and herself in particular were…

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The Music Shop is run by a peculiar man on a street of peculiar people

The Music Shop by Rachel Joyce is a quirky little story with a quirky little cast of lovably, eccentric characters. One of the reasons I love British authors (and British television shows) is their absolute mastery of understatement and irony. I adored Gail Honeyman's Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine for the same reason. Rachel Joyce also wrote The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry which I must now add to my list of books to read. A good writer can turn the most mundane everyday events into something you become immersed in and…

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