I Never Knowed It Was Hard: Memoirs of a Labrador Trapper, by Louie Montague (dictated to, transcribed and edited by Elizabeth Dawson), is a story about a man’s love for Labrador. The book is laced with anecdotes that show the author’s respect for tradition and family, his Inuit culture, and the environment.
It reads as if Louie just dropped in for a cup of tea and starts telling stories. In the process, he paints vivid word pictures of a world that was tough and unforgiving; exciting and rewarding.
Spanning a multitude of experiences from trapping, guiding and prospecting, to playing the fiddle, driving a dump truck and working as a wildlife enforcement officer, these tales are both poignant and entertaining. Yet there’s an innocence here that is a bit unnerving—perhaps because the rendering is so unpretentious.
Bonus: Dr. Robin McGrath, author and expert on Aboriginal issues, writes a comprehensive introduction which provides valuable insights into Labrador—then and now.
I Never Knowed It Was Hard
by Louie Montague
$19.95, paperback, 184 pp.
ISER Books, April 2013