“What makes The Canoeist worthy is Manuel’s ability to put us in the boat with him, spectating from the stern.”
John has authored three books that speak to his love of nature, his personal development through explorations in the wild, and his storytelling abilities depicting people’s often conflicting approaches toward preservation of the natural and manmade environment.
“When Durham author and environmental advocate John Manuel decided to write a book about canoeing, he had a choice to make: write something that would be sold in bait shops, or write literature. The result is The Canoeist, part nature guide, part memoir, a combination that works …”
“With humor and pathos, John Manuel captures a way of life fast fading from the American scene. This is a compelling and timeless story of the necessity of adapting to change.”
“As the Old South turns into the New, traditional ways of life are challenged and changed. In John Manuel’s timely novel, two generations of one family come to a parting of the ways, and controversial neighbors arrive. Vivid characters enrich this archetypal story and make for a rich, rewarding read.”
“The changes along Hope Valley Road in John Manuel’s novel mirror the cultural changes that are testing our nation. Some of his characters bend, some break. The ones still standing in the end persevere with strength, grace, and humility that we will all need to survive.”
“After just a few pages, I rediscovered the joy of a well-crafted essay. By the time I’d finished the chapter, I’d already decided I’d find room for it in the magazine.”