December 2, 2009

Top Ten Montreal Canadiens Books

With the 100th anniversary of the Montreal Canadiens officially upon us, I thought I'd count down the top ten books about Les Glorieux:

10. Jacques Plante: Man Who Changed Face of Hockey by Todd Denault - Published just this autumn, it is one of the best hockey biographies I've ever read. On top of that, the book captures the essence of the 1950s dynasty nicely.

9. Rocket Richard: Reluctant Hero by Chrys Goyens and Frank Orr - A beautiful coffee table book with surprising written content, Goyens and Orr offer an honest look at Rocket Richard's impact.

8. Our Life With The Rocket by Roch Carrier - This book ranks higher on my list than many other people would rank on theirs, but I thoroughly enjoyed Carrier's book about growing up with the undeniable influence of Rocket Richard and the Montreal Canadiens.

7. Lions In Winter by Allan Turowetz and Chris Goyens - Perhaps the most thorough text covering the Habs history, the book was first published in 1986 with updated re-releases over the years. The most recent update was supposed to be available in autumn 2009, but was postponed to a future date.

6. The Montreal Canadiens: 100 Years Of Glory by D'Arcy Jenish - Deserves mention with Lions in Winter. It kind of has taken the torch from Lions, although through a much different vantage point. Jenish collects newspaper and media reports throughout the years, telling the story of the Canadiens as it has been archived by history.

5. My Life In Hockey By Jean Beliveau - The often updated and re-released autobiography of Quebec's second most favorite son, Beliveau's book is just like him - full of class, elegance, and success.

4. The Habs by Dick Irvin - Dick Irvin Jr. literally grew up in the Habs dressing room. His legendary father was the coach, and he was a very observant adolescent who would go onto become a legendary broadcaster. No one knows the Habs better, and he documents their history with that dressing room feeling only bettered by Ken Dryden.

3. La Glorieuse Des Canadiens by Pierre Bruneau et Léandre Normand - I wish I could read more French so I could actually read this book. Robert Lefebvre of Eyes On The Prize tells me "A French book that is a bible, a season by season summary that has everything you'd ever want to know about the Habs documented and detailed."

2. The Game by Ken Dryden - The greatest hockey book ever? One of the top ten sports books, out of any sport, of all time.

1. The Hockey Sweater/Le Chandail de Hockey by Roch Carrier - The children's book is something every Canadian kid grows up with. It's like Sesame Street or street hockey. Published in French in 1979 and in English in 1984, it has become a Canadian rite of passage, and the best selling hockey book of all time. It is one of the top selling Canadian books of all time. Heck, a passage from the book is immortalized on the back of the $5 bill!

2 comments:

Eighty-Two December 3, 2009 at 2:46 PM  

I'd like to add Andy O'Brien's novel, "Wingman on Ice".

It's still the only juvenile lit book I read and re-read.

Eighty-Two December 5, 2009 at 4:57 PM  

Sorry - I meant "Hockey Wingman".

http://www.alibris.com/booksearch.detail?invid=8249960291&browse=1&qwork=2961786&qsort=&page=1

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