One writer for two nights

A well-known Cree author and lawyer is slated to speak at the Okanagan College Penticton campus next week.

First off, Monday night, Harold Johnson will discuss his new Governor-General award-nominated book, "Firewater: How Alcohol is Killing My People (and Yours)" and his role as a crown prosecutor in northern Saskatchewan.

On Tuesday he will read from his new book, as well as his fiction, and will discuss his writing life.

Okanagan College English instructor Frances Greenslade said she invited Johnson to speak as part of their Canada Council for the Arts Writers Series because he a writer with an interesting perspective.

"Johnson's book challenges the idea that drinking alcohol is normal and natural," she said. "His focus on the stories we tell ourselves about alcohol helps to explain why in spite of it being the cause of many tragedies so many of us still make alcohol a part of all our celebrations."

Johnson worked as a miner and logger across Northern and Western Canada before quitting the mines to pursue a bachelor's degree in law from the University of Saskatchewan and a master of law degree from Harvard University.  

He lives with his wife Joan at the northern end of Montreal Lake where they continue the traditions of trapping and commercial fishing common to Johnson's Cree background.

The first event is at 7 p.m., Monday in the Penticton campus lecture theatre, PL107.

The second is 7 p.m., Tuesday at the same location. Both are free.

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