Stephen R. Bown

Stephen R. Bown I have written ten books on the history of exploration, science, and ideas--including books on the medical mystery of scurvy, the Treaty or Tordesillas, the lives of Captain George Vancouver and of Roald Amundsen and a doomed Russian sea voyage. My books have been published in multiple English-speaking territories, translated into nine languages and shortlisted for many awards. I have won the BC Book Prize, the Alberta Book Award, the William Mills Prize for Polar Books. I take a biographical and narrative approach to my writing, using the techniques of fiction writing - strong storytelling, creative language, emphasizing people, their decisions, actions and motivations - to tell factually and historically accurate stories. I believe that people and their behaviour never change, only the context is different. My lifelong interest in history is fueled by the lessons to be learned from studying the successes and failures of history's greatest thinkers, leaders and innovators, those who challenged conventional thinking and entrenched power structures to change their world. I am particularly interested in how the world we live in today was formed by individuals who were responding to the big challenges of their time, and in particular, how and why those individuals became pioneers. "I have long been interested in the North American fur trade, particularly the early days during the first tentative meetings between peoples, when the world was a very different place socially, scientifically and technologically. For whatever reason it seems that this period is often misrepresented and misunderstood. While the data- statistics and numbers and facts-are obviously a fundamental background to understanding the history, it has always been the people who have fascinated me. People who were biologically the same as you and me-just as intelligent and motivated by the same basic urges-but who lived their lives and made their decisions within the boundaries of different cultural and geographical constraints." I live in a small town in the Rocky Mountains with my family. When I'm not writing I'm usually reading, mountain biking, hiking and camping in the summer, and downhill and cross country skiing in the winter. My website includes more information about my books including reviews and awards.
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