In this captivating memoir, Whit Fraser weaves scenes from more than fifty years of reporting and living in the North with fascinating portraits of the Dene and Inuit activists who successfully overturned the colonial order and politically reshaped Canada—including his wife, Mary Simon, Canada’s first Indigenous governor general.
“This is a huge embrace of a book, irresistible on every level. . . . I couldn’t put it down.” —Elizabeth Hay, Scotiabank Giller prize-winning author of Late Nights on Air
In True North Rising, Whit Fraser delivers a smart, touching and astute living history of five decades that transformed the North, a span he witnessed first as a longtime CBC reporter and then through his friendships and his work with Dene and Inuit activists and leaders. Whit had a front-row seat at the MacKenzie Valley Pipeline inquiry, the constitutional conferences and the land-claims negotiations that successfully reshaped the North; he’s also travelled to every village and town from Labrador to Alaska. His vivid portraits of groundbreakers such as Abe Okpik, Jose Kusugak, Stephen Kakfwi, Marie Wilson, John Amagoalik, Tagak Curley, and his own wife, Mary Simon, bring home their truly historic achievements, but they also give us a privileged glimpse of who they are, and who Whit Fraser is. He may have begun as a know-nothing reporter from the south, but he soon fell in love with the North, and his memoir is a testament to more than fifty years of commitment to its people.