Richard Gwyn’s The Man Who Made Us: John A. Macdonald, 1815–1867 brilliantly recreates the early life of Canada’s first Prime Minister. In pages brimming with anecdote, insight, and originality, Richard brings a lifetime of political thinking to bear on this fascinating, contradictory, and “irreplaceable” character.

Following Macdonald from his birth in Scotland through the family’s emigration to Kingston, The Man Who Made Us recounts his days as a young, rising lawyer, and details his tragedy–ridden first marriage, the birth of his political ambitions, and his triumphant celebration over the first Canada Day of the new Dominion in 1867.

Globe and Mail columnist Roy McGregor calls The Man Who Made Us “a formidable undertaking gloriously realized—a magnificent book about who we were that, somehow, manages to tell us who we are now.” Winner of the prestigious Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Nonfiction, the book was also shortlisted for the Shaughnessy Cohen Award for Political Writing.

Born in England, Richard came to Canada in 1953 and has been writing about politics in this country ever since. He is widely known as a commentator for the Toronto Star on national and international affairs, and has won multiple awards for his journalism. He is also a frequent contributor to radio and television programs.

Richard is the author of six previous books, all highly praised bestsellers, including Nationalism Without Walls: The Unbearable Lightness of Being Canadian, which the Literary Review of Canada named as one of the hundred most important books published in Canada.

He lives in Toronto and summers in Newfoundland, where he established and manages the annual Winterset Award to celebrate Newfoundland writing.

Photo Credit: Gordon Fulton