Janis Harper, co-founder of The Republic of East Vancouver newspaper, has edited a collection of personal essays guaranteed to make baby-boomers cringe, Body Breakdowns: Tales of Illness & Recovery (Anvil 2007). Yes, it's possible to say these true tales of surviving medical problems to fight another day are uplifting, but the promotional material doesn't go that route. "These stories remind us that everything can change in a moment. And that we're all in these aging bodies together."; All things must pass. Nobody gets out of here alive. And love is not all you need.

Janis Harper next edited Emails From India: Women Write Home (Toronto: Seraphim, 2013), a collection of 37 stories about travelling in India, told by 27 women writers from Canada, the US, and the UK, including Harper who helped start a school in Puttaparthi, in Andhra Pradesh, where guru Sai Baba had his ashram. On his instructions, the principal named the school after her on Christmas Day, 2008. After Sai Baba died in 2011, his foreign devotees ceased coming and living in Puttaparthi, so the school was moved to a neighboring rural village where it has flourished. Seraphim is donating $1 from each print copy sold to World Literacy Canada, an organization that promotes literacy among women in India. 978-1-927079-21-8

[Photo by Kevin Potvin]


Body Breakdowns: Tales of Illness & Recovery (Anvil 2007) 978-1895636-86-4 $18

Emails From India: Women Write Home (Toronto: Seraphim, 2013) $19.95 978-1-927079-21-8

[BCBW 2013] "Health"