Years of research pays off for Lake Cowichan author

Dean Unger’s first book is complete

More than 20 years of research has culminated in A Garden of Thieves, Lake Cowichan author Dean Unger’s first novel. The book delves into colonial settlement in British Columbia and how the First Nations communities were affected — and not for the better.

“The intent with which a thing is acquired is, in some way, the measure of its merit,” Unger said. “A Garden of Thieves, is an historical fiction that looks at the circumstances behind the Texada land scandal, a case that came unraveled in a Supreme Court trial, at Fort Victoria, that started in 1863.”

Based in part on actual events, Unger notes that A Garden of Thieves, occurred during the 1880s, in the mineral rush town of Vananda, Texada Island.

Amor de Cosmos was the Premier at the time and Unger writes about how he and a select group of powerful men, including the infamous Judge Walkem and the notorious land commissioner Joseph Trutch dismantled First Nations culture and community.

“By its very nature, the story treads on, through, and around the structure that was in place at the time, that facilitated the calculated transfer of all land in the Province of British Columbia, from the collective First Nations, to the Crown,” Unger said.

A Garden of Thieves is a story that I hope brings discussion, debate, and, ultimately, in some way, does help with the acknowledgment and healing that must continue to take place,” Unger said.

“With far-reaching effect, the book creates a view from 30,000 feet, but blown out into a vivid, moving tale, with accurate descent down into the lives of those whose fates were deeply affected by the crime committed against the First Nations, and, ultimately, to the people of British Columbia,” said a press release.

To learn more or to purchase the book, visit:

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