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Author Geoff Taylor’s remarkable story-telling skill is on full display as he dramatically unfolds the well-worn saga of Tom Thomson’s death from a totally different perspective. Two seasoned Algonquin Park guides are fishing on a summer morning when they pull Tom Thomson’s waterlogged corpse from Canoe Lake. Taking his remains to a remote island in the lake, they stand a round-the-clock vigil over their late friend. The events of these 24 hours have fueled the speculation and intrigue surrounding the Canadian artist’s life and mysterious death for more than a century. Tom Thomson’s Last Bonfire is especially enriched by the author’s own seasoning as a long-time canoeist in Algonquin Park and elsewhere.
“No one owns the Tom Thomson story. Nor does anyone truly know what happened among the several intertwined mysteries. I like to think the mystery is Canada’s to play with and be forever entertained. Geoff Tayor’s Tom Thomson’s Last Bonfire is a welcome new addition to the family of Tom mysteries. It’s a fine read that raises some intriguing possibilities.” – Roy MacGregor
“Tom Thomson’s Last Bonfire is as rare a treasure as the fabled Park in which this haunting Canadian legend was itself born. Geoff Taylor’s poetic writing and bush-lore knowledge combine for such a potent presentation of Thomson’s strange death that you feel you’re no longer turning book pages but have pulled your canoe ashore and are asking Tom’s two troubled friends, “What happened?” – J. Patrick Boyer