Posts By: John Buhler

John Buhler

John Buhler lives in Edmonton and completed a Bachelor of General Studies degree at Athabasca University. He is interested in history, religion, popular culture and medical science. John has contributed to the Voice since 2003, writing about books, movies, travel and issues of personal interest.

Book Review—Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

Book: Frankentstein; Or, the Modern Prometheus Author: Mary Shelley Faced with the current COVID-19 pandemic, the implementation of social distancing, travel restrictions, and self-isolation, many of our regular pursuits and pastimes have been curtailed.  This situation has affected schools, offices, stores, restaurants, bars, concert venues, airlines, public transit, and even fitness facilities.  With everyone staying home… Read more »

Review of The Vampire: A New History

Early in the eighteenth century, on the fringes of the Hapsburg domain, folklore about vampires came into contact with the Enlightenment and its rational outlook.  In effect, according to Nick Groom’s book, The Vampire: A New History, the vampire was “discovered” through medical examination and philosophical thought when imperial physicians and officials on the eastern… Read more »

Book Review—Lyme:The First Epidemic of Climate Change

Book: Lyme: The First Epidemic of Climate Change Author: Mary Beth Pfeiffer   Through my cat, Merlin, I was introduced to Ixodes scapularis, also known as the blacklegged tick or the deer tick, in November, 2017.  Apart from the ick factor associated with discovering the unwelcome and engorged arachnid on the family pet, Ixodes scapularis… Read more »

Book Review—Fall Down 7 Times, Get Up 8

Book: Fall Down 7 Times, Get Up 8 Author: Naoki Higashida Translators: KA Yoshida and David Mitchell To a great extent, autism is mysterious disorder.  Its possible causes have been a mystery for a long time and are still being investigated.  Some early psychoanalytic researchers held the view that “refrigerator mothers” were responsible for their… Read more »

Book Review—Fantasyland

Book: Fantasyland:  How America went Haywire:  A 500-year History Author: Kurt Andersen For decades, Kurt Andersen has written about President Trump, having featured the billionaire’s dubious business deals, vulgarity, and vain personality in Spy magazine.  More recently, Andersen collaborated with actor Alec Baldwin—who famously parodied Trump on Saturday Night Live—on a satirical biography of Trump. … Read more »

Media Review—A Monster Calls

Book/Film: A Monster Calls Author: Patrick Ness Illustrator: Jim Kay Before her death from breast cancer in 2007, writer Siobhan Dowd began to develop a story about a boy facing the imminent loss of his mother to cancer.  She drew inspiration from the highly poisonous yew tree, which was nevertheless the source of an anticancer drug she was… Read more »

Book Review—The Vimy Trap

Book: The Vimy Trap or, How We Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Great War Authors: Ian McKay and Jamie Swift The Battle of Vimy Ridge was part of the larger Battle of Arras in northern France during the First World War.  Between April 9th to 12th, 1917, four Canadian divisions wrested control of the ridge… Read more »

Book Review: War Horse

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo Egmont: 2017 ISBN 978 1 4052 2666 0 On September 19, 1914, my grandfather enlisted in the 3rd Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force and headed off to war.  In addition to volunteering, he offered his horse for military service.  According to family lore, my grandfather wanted to serve with… Read more »

In Review – Dead Funny

Book: Rudolf Herzog, Dead Funny: Humor in Hitler’s Germany (tr. Jefferson Chase) (2011) Though the Nazi regime brought about human misery and death on a massive scale, it is surprising to learn that humour still existed and indeed flourished during this dark era. In Dead Funny: Humor in Hitler’s Germany, German director Rudolf Herzog (son… Read more »