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The Dove in Bathurst Station

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  50 ratings  ·  13 reviews
Marta Elzinga has been searching for a sign. When she spots an elusive mink on the shoreline of the Toronto Island Airport, she thinks it is a message. The pigeon that boards the subway at Bathurst Station is the second sign. But how to read these dispatches?

Plagued with indecision and prone to magical thinking, Marta needs direction. A floundering guidance counsellor, she
Paperback, 240 pages
Published September 17th 2013 by Brindle & Glass
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Ruth Linka
Jun 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes you read a book and even though the character is nothing like you, with a different history, you feel you know them. That's how I felt about Marta. I think it's the sign of a compassionate and thoughtful writer which I think definitely applies to Patricia Westerhof. Her first book, Catch Me When I Fall, looked at the lives of different people with such a compassionate eye that even if you did not understand or agree with them you felt better for having known them.

In The Dove in Bathurs
Aug 25, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
This was a good book. I was skeptical at first, being an atheist, because of the religious aspects and how much God was mentioned, but it wasn't bad, it didn't go over board. This was an easy read, though it was a little slow. There wasn't really a lot that happened, but that seemed to work for this book. I liked Patricia's writing style, and it was easy to feel bad for the characters, which makes the book seem more real, being relatable. I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an h ...more
Tamara Jewett
Nov 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
An excellent read - I really enjoyed it! I found Patricia Westerhof's novel thoughtful, comforting and touching. I loved the treatment of Toronto and in particular parts of Toronto that I was never aware of through grade school but got to explore more staying here for University. Her portrait of the city rings true, and she tackles challenging and heavy subject matter - including suicide - without losing what is overall an uplifting and even humorous tone. ...more
Aug 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book through the Goodreads giveaway program.

The book I read before this was action-packed, so this was a definite change of pace for me. This was a beautifully-written and highly enjoyable read for me. I thought I wasn't going to love it because of the emphasis on God (card-carrying atheist here), but it worked well with the flow and characters of the story.

I loved the urban exploration. Ever since my first ride on the London Underground I've wanted to
Aug 25, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I won this book from a first reads giveaway.

This book took me a while to get in to, mostly because for the first 50 pages or so, I couldn't figure out what the book was about. Which I suppose was intentional, because the main character didn't seem to know what was going on either. Marta spends a significant amount of time in underground tunnels, but I didn't think the symbolism was apparent enough that it made a difference if any of that part of the story was included or not.

The plot ended up b
Sep 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I am not a city girl but have visited Toronto a couple of times. I just started reading this book and I feel like I am back in Toronto and it is a familiar place. I think we have all had times like Marta where life is just perplexing. I am loving the setting and the charters too much to leave them where they are....I'm having trouble putting this book down.

Sometimes it is nice to be blessed with a rainy day and nothing on the calendar that needs doing. I finished The Dove in Bathurst Station - I
Jul 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
this book wasn't what i really expected, but it really made me think about what might have been, what might be, and how we relate to people and events.

Some of us are lost without really knowing it or why. Marta, the main character of the book has been searching for signs to guide her in life's choices. What is holding Marta back is the suicide death of her high-school sweetheart.

Through friends, family and new acquaintances, Marta discovers herself and finds peace.
Aug 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
I won this book through Goodreads first reads for free.

This book surprised me in the ending. I thought perhaps I would not enjoy it and that I would spend and hour or so of wasted time. I am pleased to recommend for you to pick up a copy and read it for yourself so that you can see just how good it really all came out to be.
Apr 06, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: novels
I read this awhile ago, but based on my memory, it was a good read, and special because I know the author (we attended the same church at one point) and I know a little of the geography of the novel (Toronto).

I'm curious about how she learned about what its like to travel through the culverts and sewers of Toronto. Very interesting analogy to the underground and unknown in our own lives and culture.
Mar 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Having lived around Annex and UofT in my 20’s, the book had nostalgic flare to it, with descriptions of neighbourhoods, it’s atmosphere and feel. Hey enjoyed reading it.
Emma Prunty
Mar 09, 2017 rated it liked it
This really took me back to life in Toronto, which has a nice mix of history and contemporary. I have family in Lethbridge and was interested to read about the Dutch church community there.
Apr 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel: for one thing, it's all so familiar--background, questions, & setting--and for another, the author has such a fine way with words: description, metaphor, & dialogue that convey mood and meaning, sometimes in just a few well-chosen words. I still don't get Julian of Norwich though, although I see glimmers.

So why not 5 stars? well, I didn't find myself not able to put it down, and haven't been haunted by images in the book--I think that's in my criteria. I s
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patricia westerhof was born to Dutch Canadian parents, and has lived in The Netherlands, rural Alberta and Ontario. She is the author of The Dove in Bathurst Station, a novel, and of Catch Me When I Fall, a collection of linked stories. She co-authored of The Writer’s Craft, a textbook for creative writing students. Patricia lives in Toronto where she teaches English and creative writing. Please v ...more

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