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In the driver’s seat

Craig Davidson’s first work of non-fiction is a winner

MEMOIR

Precious Cargo: My Year Driving the Kids on School Bus 3077

Craig Davidson

Knopf Canada

IN THE summer of 2008, Craig Davidson was at a low point in his life. Having been hailed as “one to watch” thanks to his debut shortstory collection, Rust and Bone, expectations were high for his debut novel. But when The Fighter appeared in 2006, it flopped, selling fewer than 1,000 copies. (His U.S. publisher, upon reading the manuscript, opted not to publish it at all, despite having already paid out an advance.) It seemed Davidson was a has-been without ever becoming a going concern.

Depressed, broke, and living in Calgary, Davidson was subsisting on no-name instant oatmeal when he answered a Bus Drivers Wanted flyer that had been stuffed in his mailbox. Turns out Davidson was a pretty good bus driver, and when it came time to pick a route, he had only a moment of hesitation before agreeing to transport a group of kids with special needs ranging from autism to cerebral palsy.

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About Quill & Quire

Graphic novelist Michel Rabagliati puts his popular character on the shelf – at least for now. Plus, reviews of new books by David Adams Richards, Carmen Aguirre and Dany Vyleta.