Sunday Book Review: Lost Between the Edges

Eldon Garnet's "Lost Between the Edges" is a novel surprising not just for the prose but also for the passion. It deals with the difficult subject of Ernst Zundel and the ARA in Toronto, using facts and footnotes, while undercutting facts to reveal deeper truths.

Garnet uses imaginary and real characters, such as Zundel, and creates a realistic, sometimes frightening, sometimes pathetic, image of him. The conversations with white supremacists and ARA members are so accurate that they may have been dictated.

Back when this was all occurring, I casually knew people on both sides of the bullshit. One of the book's early conversations with a neo-nazi named Hans is not just correct in spirit but in actual delivery. His characters use many of the same phrases and arguments that I have heard, the same style and the same irrational begging of the primitive emotions.

I smiled in recognition of the repeated questions about whether someone cares about their race, the fear mongering against the Asians, the sentimental and ill-founded dreams of a time past. And so forth. It was all dreadfully familiar. It was a bitter smile.

This book is important not just for its style and intelligence but because these pernicious forces at the edge of our civilization still remain. One only needs to read the hateful nonsense espoused daily on Craigslist's Rants and Raves to see that. The question, as always, is how best to counter them.

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