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The Canal House

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  126 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Photojournalist Nicky Bettencourt thinks he's seen everything until he teams up with the legendary war correspondent Daniel McFarland. To Daniel, the story is everything; people come later. But after a plane crash nearly takes his life, Daniel begins to see the world in a different way. He falls in love with Julia Cadell, an idealistic British doctor, and together they fin ...more
Paperback, 368 pages
Published July 5th 2004 by Mariner Books (first published April 11th 2003)
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Average rating 3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  126 ratings  ·  26 reviews

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May 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
I won this book on Goodreads. It was a stunning story of war and the journalists and photographers who cover these events. A love story involving a doctor who goes to these war torn places to help the innocent victims merges in their stories. Extremely well written and vivid.
Nov 30, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Future Journalist
The Canal House by Mark Lee intrigued me. Lately, I’ve been on a bit of a journalism kick, for example, Forgive Me by Amanda Eyre Ward.

I really liked how this book shifted from the point of view of Nicky, the photojournalist, to Julia, the doctor.

“But everything was simpler there [at the refugee camp]: you never thought about how you looked and what you should wear, you never had to deal with rush hour and over drafts at your bank, there were no hospital administrators criticizing how much time
Lindsey Buchanan
Nov 14, 2009 rated it really liked it
If you can keep up with all the traveling and the switching of narrators I think anyone could enjoy this book. It's the journey of a journalist, a photographer and a relief aid doctor. It has adventure, romance and heartbreak. I really enjoyed reading it. ...more
Jill Robinson
Jan 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011
I may be stepping out on a limb by giving this book 5 stars, but I really did LOVE it. Maybe because of the topic of relief work in 3rd world countries, maybe because of the photography references, maybe because the characters were just so awesome. Whatever it was, this book was great!
Sep 04, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ndr, 2005, own
One of those books which hit me very strongly at the time I read it -- bits of it are still clear in my mind and those bits are enticement to revisit it one day. Highly recommend this one.
Dec 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
There are some books that you can't seem to put down because you are so entrenched in the story. Then there are books that feel so real, so alive, that you want to take your time in it, to absorb every little detail and you feel as if you are part of the characters' lives, feeling everything with them. This book falls in the latter category. It's a sorry you don't want to end. The characters are people you could actually know, not stock characters drawn from a textbook. They have real lives, rea ...more
Kathy Webb
Aug 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway.
Thank you to everyone involved.
This book is very well written. Great characters.
You won’t want to put it down.
Aug 06, 2019 marked it as physical_to-read_stack
I received my copy free through Goodreads Giveaways.
Steven Ridgely
Oct 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Great story
Dreama Villa
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Mar 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Interesting story from the perspective of an in field photographer and a Dr. Very well written.
Jan 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
"The Canal House" is told in two acts and an intermission across territory as far-flung as the UK to Italy to Uganda to East Timor. It is the story of foreign correspondents, international aid workers, and the mercenaries who rush toward disaster to collect gold and glory. Mark Lee's novel and his characters are players in a complex global ecosystem. Each must choose how to live with others, and ultimately whether or not they can live with the versions of themselves that they choose to be. Lee e ...more
Dec 16, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good read. Lee's experiences ring true in his fiction. Nice pacing, good character development and, 6 years removed from it's original publication, a still relevant reflection on modern war, peace-keeping, and the commercialism of International Aid efforts. You get to learn something and enjoy a thrilling plot, while not being preached to.

I recommend picking it up from your local bookseller. Mine are Bailey Coy and Elliott Bay Books.
Philip Swanstrom Shaw
Jul 03, 2010 rated it it was ok
I'm glad to be finished. For some reason, I never really got into this book. The relationships just seemed a little false to me and I really just don't believe guys go around caring if another guy calls him his "best friend". Sometimes the writing was pretty decent. But I just felt at such a distance from all the characters and that just made me simply not care all that much. I like the cover. ...more
Feb 10, 2008 rated it really liked it
a book about journalists and photographers traveling the world to cover disasters, genocides and the such. This was the view of one of them:

Idealists are dangerous to themselves and the people around them. If you truly wanted to live a good life, it was a revolutionary act....If you want to be a saint, you have to risk looking like a fool.
May 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
I just finished the book this early morning, in less than 48 hours, and really liking it.
The descriptions are detailed but not overdone, the plot was flowing and intriguing. The characters are strong, and almost real. I would really love to meet these person in life, Daniel, Julia and Nicky.
Jul 21, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Thrill seekers and romantics
I enjoyed this one about life as a war correspondent in some of the most dangerous war zones in current memory. Interesting work, especially in Africa and East Timore. Recommended to everyone who wants an "interesting" life... ...more
Jul 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
I would definitely recommend this book. Even though my world is very different from the one described, I found it very easy to feel involved in the story line and close to the main characters. The writer knows how to increase the intensity level at the end, I could not put it down. A good read.
May 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Very sad story. But finally a book about news writers with a conscience. The war correspondent and photo journalist in East Timor, risking their lives to get interviews and the truth to the international press.
Stacey Eid
Jul 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own
Wonderful book about war, refuge camps, journalism, and even mild politics.
Feb 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing
first novel that I've read that I really liked in quite a while. I'm just sad I can't find more books like it ...more
Elaine N. Reas
Dec 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nogo awau
Jun 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the book however I felt that there was way too much of an interval between scenes of action. Daniel had an unfortunate ending.
Dec 26, 2010 rated it really liked it
gripping fiction about a photographer's growth through experiencing modern danger spots with a fearless journalist ...more
Aug 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Not a perfect book. But what it does--it does completely. Creates a world on a page. Satisfying.
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Sep 07, 2020
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Aug 13, 2012
Mary jean
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Mark Lee is a highly regarded novelist, playwright, journalist and children's book author.

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Happy Women's History Month! One of the undisputedly good things about modern scholarship is that women’s history is finally getting its due....
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