New Novel Explores Life in the Lost Villages

By Bob Peters
June 26, 2012

Jennifer DeBruin - A Walk with MaryJennifer DeBruin has made a career of helping others articulate success, and now the first-time author is following her own advice with the publishing of her first novel, A Walk with Mary.

A Walk with Mary is a story based on the experience of a woman from a generation known for its ability to bravely move forward in life - regardless of the challenges. It is a story inspired by her maternal grandmother's own experiences growing up along the banks of the St. Lawrence River near Cornwall.

"As my understanding grew of who I am as a woman, empowered by the generation I was raised in, along with becoming a wife and mother, I began to understand that despite the fact that Mary’s generation did not talk about their feelings, did not mean they did not exist", says Ms. DeBruin. "Below the surface were deep feelings of love, joy, disappointment, and loss."

Ms. DeBruin was able to tap into her passions for genealogy, history, and language arts, and in so doing was able to interweave the story of Mary with the story of the ‘Lost Villages’, the towns that literally disappeared under the St. Lawrence River during the construction of the St. Lawrence Seaway in the late 1950's.

"It seems incredible that such historic places – settled by United Empire Loyalists in the 1780’s – villages and hamlets that so many used to call home, were washed away by the St. Lawrence Seaway as the price of progress," says Ms. DeBruin.

The novel is unveiled to the world at a special event held June 27 at the Lost Villages Musueum, and hosted by local history champion and former MPP Jim Brownell - has graciously offered to host the book launch at their museum.

A Walk with Mary is now available at the General Store Publishing House, Chapters, Amazon - and will soon be available at local booksellers in the Cornwall area. An e-book version will also soon be available.

"While the process of writing is emotionally intensive, the decision to put my book out into the world is one of the biggest leaps of faith I’ve ever made," says Ms. DeBruin. "I am very happy with the reaction that the book is generating!"

About the Author

Jennifer deBruin is always looking for opportunities to learn the stories of people and places through discussion, research, and travel. In addition to her burgeoning efforts as an author, she is a Communications Professor at St. Lawrence College in Cornwall Ontario. She owns her own company, ARTICULATION, and is a professional speaker on a number of topics.

Learn more about the author and book at:


Category: Arts and Entertainment