Home on the Strange: Chronicles of Motherhood, Mayhem and Matters of the Heart

Susan J. Lundy | Home on the Strange: Chronicles of Motherhood, Mayhem and Matters of the Heart

Reviewed by: Daryl Grumpy McLoughlin

The author:     Susan J. Lundy is the author of two books: Home on the Strange, Mayhem and Matters of the Heart and Heritage Apples: A New Sensation. Ms. Lundy has won more than two dozen feature writing awards from Canadian and regional newspaper associations. She is also a two-time winner of a Jack Webster award for journalistic excellence. She is currently the managing editor of Boulevard Magazine and resides on Salt Spring Island.

The book: Home on the Strange is an insiders’ book. It’s a nudge-nudge, wink-wink approach to life on a Gulf Island. It’s a book that will appeal to Gulf Islanders, with “I can relate to that” threads throughout the book. I can relate to this Gulf Island whiff. The differences between living on a Gulf Island and living in an urban setting. I can relate to that too. Life when the power is out. That too. A community where people know who you are. Check. However, the “I can relate to that” charm of this book goes beyond just life on the Gulf Islands. There’s also life as the parent of sports playing kids. I can relate to that too. The anxiety of shopping for your daughters’ grad dresses. Well, I cannot relate to that, but it is witty. Susan Lundy used to write newspaper columns and the book is formatted as a series of sometimes amusing, sometimes philosophical and sometimes thought provoking mini-chapters. Ms. Lundy loves living on the Gulf Islands and it shows in her writings. To be fair, she also has some good things to say about Calgary. She lists seven more favourable things about Calgary that I would have, but she is taking as close to a balanced approach as any good Gulf Islander would on this subject.

While there is humour in this book, I do salute the courage of Susan Lundy for coming out as a spousal survivor of a Toronto Maple Leaf’s fan. The horrors of living this nightmare are laid out in the book. Hopefully this will encourage others trapped in this same hellish existence to find the courage to seek help. 

Susan Lundy will participate in this year’s Denman Island Readers and Writers Festival. Don’t miss this chance to hear her talk about her writing and about her new passion. Some, when looking for a change in the direction in their lives, take up things like Mixed Martial Arts or nuclear physics. Susan Lundy has taken up apples.


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