In the Shadow of Inspiration: Canada’s National Parks and Beyond


In the Shadow of Inspiration is a unique book which draws together many strands in order to embrace concepts such as conservation,  natural history, social history and a celebration of Canadian National Parks.



Author: Julian Ashbourn

ISBN: 978-1-926780-11-5

Dimension: 11 x 8″

Number of Pages: 204

Synopsis: In the Shadow of Inspiration is a unique book which draws together many strands in order to embrace concepts such as conservation, natural history, social history and a celebration of Canadian National Parks. In so doing, it revisits the story of Archie “Grey Owl” Belaney and his essential message and considers the early settlement of these lands. The book constitutes a highly pertinent and timely milestone in its focus upon conservation and the implications of habitat destruction. In addition, it looks to the future and offers some important new ideas with respect to the preservation of our living planet. The whole is underpinned by the beautiful photography for which the author is renowned, rendering the book a pleasure to own and re-read again and again. In the Shadow of Inspiration should be on every bookshelf and in every school library as well as in every government agency. It is an important book for all those who love the land and who understand and appreciate our world in the broader context.


  1. Readers Comments’

    “I’ve just read through your introduction without a break. It instantly drew me in especially your style of narration – direct and original just as the natural world. Some of your sentences would make wonderful quotes for mankind to reflect on. Truly unique & beautiful!”

    “Yes, you’ve put it aptly – humanity and our relationship with the natural world indeed builds our future and most importantly I think you’ve just aptly described the poor man. I’ve learnt so much from this one chapter and I intend to learn more by reading the rest.”

    “It is indeed a book with a difference that will make for great reading. It not only makes us understand the nature around us better but also understand ourselves in how we can all be a part of this great journey called conservation.”

    “Thank you for the wonderful read!”

    “You write with such passion! I read your first two chapters and truly felt your heart on these pages.”

    “The introduction does a marvellous job setting the stage. I especially enjoyed how you directed our attention to so many poets, composers, and artists, who were all deeply inspired by nature. In a world so full of technology these days, it is good to be reminded of the majesty around us, to breathe, to experience the beauty of nature. I fear we do indeed forget to take notice of the ‘joyous song of the robin” and the “magnificent coloured coats of the butterflies.’
    Chapter two wonderfully weaves in the historical elements of the Saskatchewan homesteaders. I love it when a book takes me back to those who have gone before and teaches me something new from their perseverance and hard work.”

    “It is obvious tremendous research has gone into this piece. It is very well-written, and your style flows smoothly. Mostly, though, it makes me want to venture outdoors and rejoice once again in the beauty around us! Giving you high stars and wishing you every success with this piece.”

    “I have read most of what is posted here: chapters one and two, most of three and four. I would happily read more, as you write in a light and well informed style which manages to be enlightening and entertaining at the same time. I love books I can learn from, and those that I enjoy. Your book manages both.”

    “You write with eloquence about the emergence of the movement for ecological justice and restoration. Your subject matter urgently needs to be heard. Much of what you describe we know already. We know that we must learn to take care of what is precious. We know that we are part of an integral system without which we will perish, though the world, pursuing its own inscrutable agenda, may well survive. We know all this, yet too often we prefer to forget, and no amount of hectoring will help to change our ways.”

    “Your book is therefore welcome, as it avoids the pitfalls of preaching. Unlike me. I better stop now. You have written a marvellous book and I hope you upload some more.
    I read through chapter one and half of chapter two this evening. Lovely, well written book! I enjoyed the chapter about the early pioneers in Saskatchewan, Canada. I loved the references to Van Gogh and Beethoven. Highly starred!”

    “A lovely, well-written book. You have no doubt rendered an excellent job in drawing a fabulous introduction.”

    “Your style of narrating events is vivid and can hook readers in to the story. Highly starred.”

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