The New Penguin History of Canada
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The New Penguin History of Canada

3.42 of 5 stars 3.42  ·  rating details  ·  88 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Canada is in many ways a country of limits, a paradox for a place that enjoys virtually unlimited space. Most of that space is uninhabited, and much of it is uninhabitable. It is a country with a huge North but with most of its population in the South, hugging the American border.

Canada's history, eminent historian Robert Bothwell argues, is more than simply regional or na...more
Paperback, 500 pages
Published April 24th 2008 by Penguin Books Ltd (first published 2006)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 231)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Paul Nelson
I read this hoping to receive a good overview of Canadian history, which this book does very well up until about World War II. It's a fairly enjoyable read (the author is fond of dry humor), but it's not for historical amateurs.
nothing to do with penguins (ongoing joke -- my children repeatedly asked me why I was reading about penguins in Canada). Excellent overview, good place to start...
Elle Druskin
I truly enjoy history books and I wanted to know more about Canada's history. This is really a very good comprehensive book. It may bog down in areas such as tariff and governmental policy that may make it difficult for some readers but it is worth persevering. It gave me an excellent overall understanding of the issues and people who shaped Canada. I knew a fair amount about the colonial history but not much after early 19th century and this helped to fill that gap. It enlightened me in a deepe...more
May 23, 2011 Alexis added it
Shelves: 2011
I only read the last section of this for some research that I'm doing, but I would highly recommend this book.
Roger Burk
I picked this up as prep for a Canada vacation. It's a smooth and easy read, though long. It covers the history of Canada up to 2007 in a straightforward, matter-of-fact fashion. Lots of interesting tidbits that were new to this Yank. Did you know that the Gulf of St. Lawrence used to abound in walruses, until they were hunted to exinction around 1800? That the Iroquois made war on the Hurons, defeating and dispersing them in the 17th century? That a second wave of Americans (after the post-Revo...more
Yasser Maniram
Preface: Read this book to supplement material during my University Canadian History course.

You get exactly what the cover states, a history of Canada. Well researched and organized into 17 chapters each with their own sub-chapters. It has all the content of a Canadian history textbook, with the personality of an enthusiastic university lecturer.
The only thing that got me through this book was the fact that I went on a long trip for which I had to pack very light, and this was the only book I took with me. I found it poorly organized and confusing, jumping back and forth in time without warning, sometimes over the course of a paragraph. It was also strikingly white-centric, with the native populations reduced to occasional parenthetical statements (literally in at least one instance). I often had to look up events in other places to get...more
Bothwell gives a good general overview of the big events of Canadian history, but the book suffers from too much assumption of knowledge of Canadian culture. No events ever feel weightier than any others, and I had trouble telling what were the big events of Canadian history. The book also exhibits the tendency of one-volume histories of grossly overcovering the modern period--something like 130 pages on the years 1960-2000.

Still, the book has whetted my appetite for further histories of Canada,...more
Jen Sparks
This well-written book provided a good background on the history of Canada. I learned much more than I remember learning in school on this subject and found some surprising tidbits along the way. The only topic that I would've liked to see covered more fully was how the First Nation groups and the Canadian government came to agree upon the various land claim settlements over the past few decades. Outside of that omission I would highly recommend this book to anyone that is interested in knowing...more
Good overview but there were very important aspects of Canadian history lightly acknowledged and the events and people highlighted were invariably from Ontario or Quebec. Worth reading to get the jest of things but the book is missing a portrayal of the personalities and unique events that make history come to life.
I wasn't ready to dig into any aspects of Canadian history too deeply - I just wanted a nice gloss so I can have a frame of reference the next time I accompany Coach Russell to her homeland. This book provided just such a history.

For school, I only had to read Chp. 13-16. I learned a bit about Canada throughout those few chapters and I think the author did a great job in trying to make it sound interesting ;) as boring as it may have seemed
Good general overview of Canadian history. Nothing in-depth but you can expect much more from a single volume book. Well written and easy to read.
great for getting more details on all the Canadian history I've forgotten.
Well written, but a bit boring at times.
Tanvi is currently reading it
Jul 15, 2014
Jude marked it as to-read
Jul 13, 2014
Jocelyne marked it as to-read
Jul 07, 2014
Mel marked it as to-read
Jun 22, 2014
Ahwaz marked it as to-read
Jun 03, 2014
Thomas marked it as to-read
May 18, 2014
Diana marked it as to-read
May 13, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
Robert Bothwell is a professor of Canadian history, and the foremost scholar on Canadian Cold War participation, as well as a frequently published author.
More about Robert Bothwell...
A Travellers History of Canada Canada and Quebec: One Country, Two Histories Canada Since 1945 Alliance and Illusion: Canada and the World, 1945-1984 Our Century:  The Canadian Journey

Share This Book