Feisty icon; passionate Canadian; unrelenting foe of all pretension; energetic provocateur-at-large and most importantly, superb and dedicated writer, there cannot be a Canadian alive who is unaware of the legacy that is Farley Mowat. And No Bird Sang and A Whale for the Killing are the first books in a new Douglas & McIntyre library of handsomely redesigned paperback editions of Farley Mowat's work.
Turned away from the Royal Canadian Air Force for his apparent youth and frailty, Farley Mowat joined the infantry in 1940. The young second lieutenant soon earned the trust of the soldiers under his command, and was known to bend army rules to secure a stout drink, or find warm -- if non-regulation -- clothing. But when Mowat and his regiment engaged with elite German forces in the mountains of Sicily, the optimism of their early days as soldiers was replaced by despair. With a naturalist's eyes and ears, Mowat takes in the full dark depths of war -- and his moving account of military service, and the friends he left behind, is also a plea for peace. It is one of the most searing and unforgettable World War II memoirs from any Canadian.