Reviews

This is what people are saying about The Day They Shot Reveen – Stories from a PEI small town:

CBC Radio interview with Matt Rainnie, May 12, 2016.http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/prince-edward-island/programs/islandmorning/storytelling-is-in-his-dennis-king-s-genes-1.3576833

 

Dennis King is an expert storyteller who unabashedly celebrates the personalities and quirks of the people who surrounded him as a child. Growing up in Georgetown, PEI it would be easy to feel the grass is always greener on the other side. While the economy often sagged and industries came and went, the people of this hardscrabble town never lost their pride in place. If you were born there, you will always call it home. King’s stories, some perhaps embellished for effect, revel in the memories made during a simpler time, before the Internet and video games. His collection of stories is belly laugh funny. Most importantly it is a love story to a town that remains unique to this day.” 

Paul MacNeill, Publisher, Island Press Ltd.

“I was thrilled to hear Dennis was putting together a book of stories. I have known the King family for a long time and Dennis comes by his talents honestly. His uncle Donald was a gifted storyteller, writer and poet. Only the late, great Urban Carmichael, for possessing a quick wit and an ability to tell a tale, rivals Dennis’ father, the legendary Lionel. This book is a must-read for me.”

Doug MacLean, former newspaper columnist

“To know France, you must know something about wine. With Canada, It’s hockey. And PEI? You have to know about the Kennedy family – Brad Richards made sure I understood this…. And you must know about Dennis King!”

Ron MacLean, host Hockey Night in Canada

“When I heard that Dennis was publishing a book about classic Georgetown characters and stories, I started chuckling to myself thinking that Dennis himself is a classic story-telling character. How fitting for him to be writing a book on that very subject.

The King and Jenkins family have been connected for generations. When Dennis was younger, he was at our house for so many meals and sleepovers he blended right in with the dozen Jenkins kids very well. He loved to listen to my Dad Hibbie tell stories and jokes.

Lionel King, Dennis’ father, was another great, Georgetown story-telling character. I spent many evenings listening to Lionel hold court telling classic stories that kept us all in stitches, so, the apple never fell far from the tree.

I am so pleased that Dennis is keeping the story-telling tradition alive. This gifted story-telling character is also preserving the history of the place where we grew up and are proud to call home – Georgetown.”

Myrtle Jenkins-Smith, life-long friend

“The key to great story telling is a good ear. All the best storytellers have it: an ability to hear a story where others only hear a narrative. Dennis King has it in spades, and that is what comes through loud and clear in this very personal collection of stories from his hometown of Georgetown.  Dennis hears “the story” in every neighbour’s voice and in every quirky, funny, and touchingly poignant incident, that illustrates the everyday life of a small town. Their stories are all here…told with a love and respect and an understanding that can only come from having been an intimate part of it all. Dennis’ pride of place comes shining through, and in almost every story, the hero is Georgetown.

If you love the stories of Stephen Leacock, Garrison Keillor, or Stuart McLean, you’ll love the stories of Dennis King.”

Alan Buchanan, master storyteller

 ”A good story is like a flavourful, nourishing meal and it all begins with a recipe.  The storyteller must be a keen observer and attentive listener.  They have to care deeply about their subject.  They have to have a way with words, a gift for gab.  Dennis King is a natural.  His love of PEI and its people radiates from his stories, as does his sense of humour.  Like all the best chefs, Dennis adds a little magic to the dish that’s hard to duplicate but a pleasure to taste.”

Matt Rainnie

Matt Rainnie, host, CBC Radio’s Island Morning

“Dennis King is what I would call an Island character.  He grew up in Kings County, has worked in Charlottetown, married a girl from Prince County and now lives in rural Queens County.  You could say that he is a bit like our Island newspaper The Guardian – he covers the Island like the dew.

With this understanding of the Island it is no surprise that Dennis has become one of the eminent storytellers in Prince Edward Island.  Also, he’s supposedly a fine athlete and one of the biggest supporters of local sports on the Island.  And to top it all off he’s an aberration in Island politics- he’s was born a Liberal and turned Conservative! 

With his great sense of humor and ability to deliver one liners this should be quite the book!”

Hon. Robert Ghiz, 31st Premier of Prince Edward Island

“Through the influences of a loving family and friends, Dennis King recounts personal memories of coming of age as a young boy growing up in a small town. Dennis recalls observations of a lifetime weaving poignant and humorous anecdotes into an entertaining collection of stories, which celebrate the people who have influenced him as a writer. Though generated in the warm interactions among people living in a tight-knit rural community, the stories embody a larger meaning in the broader context of our lives. Through a series of mishaps, misunderstanding and good intentions gone astray, the characters reveal a side of human life, which creates joyful recollections and significant life lessons long after the initial event.

Stories give meaning to our lives and Dennis’ gift to the reader is that of appreciating those who cause us to reflect on context behind the actions we observe.” 

Myron Yates, former teacher and principal

“Having grown up on a small mixed-farm in rural PEI with seven siblings, the stories that Dennis King relates in this book bring me back to a time when life was simple, friends were treasured and evening time was story time. Denny is a true grassroots historian – telling entertaining tales that can make us laugh and cry. I’m so privileged to be able to call him friend.”

Allan Andrews, President, Andrews Hockey Growth Programs, Member of PEI Business Hall of Fame

“Our 30 year friendship has been nurtured through hilarity, quenched with clever wit, and fed a regular diet of realistic (and often twisted!) humor that only comes from being able to laugh at ourselves – as Islanders and the indigenous peoples of the great Kings County! If laughter really is the best medicine, then Dennis is one of my favorite drug dealers. God love ‘em! Holy Dinah! Man, dear!”

Kerri Wynne MacLeod, radio host, Ocean 100 morning show

All Dennis King’s stories pulsate with the energy of authentic small town experience. He will take you to the heart of Georgetown, but because he knows the terrain so well, and plumbs it so deeply, with such wit and affection, the local opens up to the universal. Page after page readers will discover they have been transported beyond Georgetown to familiar, perhaps forgotten, places within themselves.

Here’s what you get with Dennis King: he writes with spirit and zest; he writes with piercing insight; and he writes from the heart. And, oh yes, he’s also funny as hell. Need a good laugh? Look no further.

There is an old Russian proverb that the fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one thing well. There is something of both of those in Denny, and the one thing he knows well is Georgetown and its people. I highly recommend you take the town-tour with this talented storytelling guide.

David Weale, Author and Famed Storyteller