Monday, January 28, 2008

The Big Why Reviewed in The Ottawa Citizen

Canadian Actors Bring Audiobooks to Life
from The Ottawa Citizen
January 27, 2008
By Janice Kennedy

"Note-perfect" and "memorable" are adjectives you'll also want to use to describe the audio version of Michael Winter's The Big Why, from the little Newfoundland company that could, Rattling Books (10.5 hours unabridged/1 MP3 CD, $29.95). Winter's haunting 2004 novel, a faux-memoir of real-life American artist Rockwell Kent's brief sojourn in Brigus, Nfld., just before the First World War, is a thoughtful reflection on the nature of art and the role of artists. But, plunked down squarely into the bustle of Manhattan and then the hard beauty of coastal Newfoundland, it is also a narrative that thrums with vibrancy and provocative colour.

Another veteran Canadian actor, Robert Joy (you can catch him on CSI: New York) deftly handles Winter's words and his characters, whether world-weary New Yorker or Newfoundlander with a poet's soul and a pragmatist's impatience with nonsense. Joy was born in Montreal but lived and worked on The Rock for years, so he has the voices down exactly right.

It is worth noting that The Big Why is also available as a $19.95 digital download from, which also offers a variety of single-story downloads for bargain prices of $2.95-$3.95. It's a fine way to sample some of the company's outstanding wares.

To read the rest of the article, please click here.


The unabridged audio edition of The Big Why
, narrated by Robert Joy, was recently published by Rattling Books. It is available from as either an MP3 CD or Digital Download. Listening time 10.5 hours.