"Barbara Kay knows a thing or two about good writing. As one Canada’s most widely read columnists in the National Post, she’s expressed herself forcefully and cogently for years, never mincing her words, garnering the applause of readers and sometimes their ire."

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BARBARA KAY RELEASES FIRST NOVEL, A QUEBEC-BASED MURDER MYSTERY


One of the most controversial writers in Canada, National Post columnist and acclaimed author Barbara Kay, makes her first foray into fiction with the release of “A Three Day Event,” a murder mystery underscored by sociopolitical tensions in a Quebec horse sport community.

Loosely based on actual events faced by the Kay family, A Three-Day Event takes readers back to 1992, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, where Le Centre Équestre de l’Estrie is playing host to a horse sport competition for Olympic hopefuls. Heightened by linguistic and class tensions, cracks begin to appear in the community’s sunny facade. Le Centre is suddenly jarred by a series of violent events: Anti-Anglophone vandalism, an assault on a stallion and other conflicts culminating in the murder of the centre’s reviled stable boy. Former champion jumper Polo Poisson takes the reins as chief sleuth and discovers that nearly everyone in the stable is a suspect.

Award-winning Montreal novelist Glen Rotchin praises Kay’s venture into fiction: “It’s polished, richly imagined and suspenseful, everything you’d want in a murder mystery. This is a novel that rises far above the level of a typical first novel.”

“Many non-fiction writers are curious to know whether they can pull off a work of fiction. I too wondered for decades, but it wasn’t until my daughter was betrayed by her mentor in horse sport that I found my inspiration,” Kay said. “Suddenly my ten years of immersion in the fascinating world of high-stakes three-day eventing competition opened a creative seam I had never thought possible.”

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Bill Maher 1, Chrystia Freeland 0

Latest Column

Barbara Kay: In a case with no witnesses, how can any judge be so sure?

Posted on 2016-07-26 15:43:49

Last week York University PhD candidate Mustafa Ururyar was convicted of sexually assaulting grad student Mandi Gray. My curiosity piqued by reports of comments made during trial by Justice Marvin Zuker, I read the 179-page judgment. The specifics of the incident — an evening of social drinking, a quarrel en route to Ururyar’s home, his break-up of their two-week casual “relationship,” followed by sex he says was consensual, she says wasn’t — can be found in the transcript. There were no witnesses and no injuries. This left us with a he-said, she-said story in a judge-alone trial. In the end, Zuker found that Gray was “the credible witness” and there was “no uncertainty in this court. Ms Gray was raped by the accused.” In Zuker’s opinion, then, the defence failed to raise a “reasonable doubt,” which in criminal law, as he notes, “is not a far-fetched or frivolous doubt. It is not a doubt based on sympathy or prejudice. It is a doubt based on reason and common sense. It is a doubt that logically arises from the evidence, or the lack of evidence.” Zuker’s absolute certainty puzzles me, for whatever the truth is, I – someone with “reason and common sense” — found Ururyar’s account no less (or more) credible than Gray’s. Now it is not unusual for two witnesses, one lying and one not, to produce credible stories. But to quell my own reasonable doubt as to an accused’s guilt, I would not only have to find the accuser’s story more credible, I’d have to find the defence implausible. Ururyar’s story may not be true, but it is indeed entirely plausible. RelatedChristie Blatchford: Toronto judge unleashes sneering rant at bail hearing for man he convicted of rapeChristie Blatchford: Judge’s florid ruling seems an attempt to blow up so-called ‘rape myths’ Yet Zuker proclaimed (seven times) that Ururyar’s version “never happened.” He went further, reading in an attitude that was neither enunciated by Ururyar or........

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BARBARA KAY RELEASES FIRST NOVEL, A QUEBEC-BASED MURDER MYSTERY


One of the most controversial writers in Canada, National Post columnist and acclaimed author Barbara Kay, makes her first foray into fiction with the release of “A Three Day Event,” a murder mystery underscored by sociopolitical tensions in a Quebec horse sport community.

Loosely based on actual events faced by the Kay family, A Three-Day Event takes readers back to 1992, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, where Le Centre Équestre de l’Estrie is playing host to a horse sport competition for Olympic hopefuls. Heightened by linguistic and class tensions, cracks begin to appear in the community’s sunny facade. Le Centre is suddenly jarred by a series of violent events: Anti-Anglophone vandalism, an assault on a stallion and other conflicts culminating in the murder of the centre’s reviled stable boy. Former champion jumper Polo Poisson takes the reins as chief sleuth and discovers that nearly everyone in the stable is a suspect.

Award-winning Montreal novelist Glen Rotchin praises Kay’s venture into fiction: “It’s polished, richly imagined and suspenseful, everything you’d want in a murder mystery. This is a novel that rises far above the level of a typical first novel.”

“Many non-fiction writers are curious to know whether they can pull off a work of fiction. I too wondered for decades, but it wasn’t until my daughter was betrayed by her mentor in horse sport that I found my inspiration,” Kay said. “Suddenly my ten years of immersion in the fascinating world of high-stakes three-day eventing competition opened a creative seam I had never thought possible.”

Read an excerpt of this book

Read More


Bill Maher 1, Chrystia Freeland 0

Latest Column

Barbara Kay: In a case with no witnesses, how can any judge be so sure?

Posted on 2016-07-26 15:43:49

Last week York University PhD candidate Mustafa Ururyar was convicted of sexually assaulting grad student Mandi Gray. My curiosity piqued by reports of comments made during trial by Justice Marvin Zuker, I read the 179-page judgment. The specifics of the incident — an evening of social drinking, a quarrel en route to Ururyar’s home, his break-up of their two-week casual “relationship,” followed by sex he says was consensual, she says wasn’t — can be found in the transcript. There were no witnesses and no injuries. This left us with a he-said, she-said story in a judge-alone trial. In the end, Zuker found that Gray was “the credible witness” and there was “no uncertainty in this court. Ms Gray was raped by the accused.” In Zuker’s opinion, then, the defence failed to raise a “reasonable doubt,” which in criminal law, as he notes, “is not a far-fetched or frivolous doubt. It is not a doubt based on sympathy or prejudice. It is a doubt based on reason and common sense. It is a doubt that logically arises from the evidence, or the lack of evidence.” Zuker’s absolute certainty puzzles me, for whatever the truth is, I – someone with “reason and common sense” — found Ururyar’s account no less (or more) credible than Gray’s. Now it is not unusual for two witnesses, one lying and one not, to produce credible stories. But to quell my own reasonable doubt as to an accused’s guilt, I would not only have to find the accuser’s story more credible, I’d have to find the defence implausible. Ururyar’s story may not be true, but it is indeed entirely plausible. RelatedChristie Blatchford: Toronto judge unleashes sneering rant at bail hearing for man he convicted of rapeChristie Blatchford: Judge’s florid ruling seems an attempt to blow up so-called ‘rape myths’ Yet Zuker proclaimed (seven times) that Ururyar’s version “never happened.” He went further, reading in an attitude that was neither enunciated by Ururyar or........

Read Full Article