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The 12 Books of Christmas


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On top of Morrison's vivid narrative, the book also contains a wealth of brilliant photos that the author collected from a myriad of sources - Canadian Press , the Canadian Ski Museum, Ski Racing Magazine , and even the racers' personal collections - to paint a vivid picture of the Crazy Canucks' incredible journey. This is the perfect read to inspire everyone to go for gold.

- Reviewed by Holly Fraughton


Out West: Snowboarding, Westbeach and a new Canadian Dream

By Dano Pendygrasse, 119 pp, $14.95

Westbeach Apparel Company


Ever spend a day in the lift lines surrounded by a seemingly never-ending sea of neon and find yourself fighting off the urge to tell that snot-nosed punk about the days when snowboarding wasn't about making money and getting sponsored, it was about having fun? Well, then it may be time to let those whippersnappers know where the sport really came from.

Enter Dano Pendygrasse's, Out West: Snowboarding, Westbeach and a new Canadian Dream, a book that heralds back to the '80s and the birth of the sport and culture of snowboarding.

A Westbeach project, it tells the story of Dennis "Chip" Wilson's original Westbeach Surf Company, of course, but it doesn't stop there. On top of the Westbeach brand and company, Pendygrasse delves into an exploration of the people who were drawn to the sport when it was in its infancy, and the road bumps encountered along the way.

"This book is a look at people who, for some part of their lives, loved snowboarding more than anything else."

It's filled with loads of colourful, hilarious (and, lets face it, slightly embarrassing) images dug out of the Westbeach archives, including original T-shirt designs, a photo of John Kami's homemade board from the early '80s, and of course, the fashion of the day (think fanny packs and those nifty snap-on bracelets).

"Snowboarding copied all the patterns and neon colours from skate and surf culture, but since we had a whole body to cover, as opposed to just needing a pair of shorts, we had more neon per square inch than our concrete- and wave-riding siblings. We were brand-new, too, having just been given the key to the mountain, and we all had something to prove, so we didn't really whisper - we shouted 'Neon!' at the top of our lungs."

Pendygrasse has done a fantastic job of marrying his personal narrative with insightful interviews, historical data, photographs, archival images and artifacts from the era, making this a fun and interesting read for even the gnarliest of new school shredders. And if nothing else, the pictures will have you howling.