Harbour View

Binnie Brennan

ISBN 978-0-9810186-4-5

From the lip of the Atlantic to the mountains of the California desert, and spanning a century’s worth of memories, Harbour View weaves together the stories of residents and staff in a nursing home overlooking Halifax Harbour. Memories drawn from the rich and diverse pasts of six main characters and their families infuse a bittersweet present. Threaded with music and united by themes of dislocation, family legend, and longing, Harbour View offers moving glimpses into the extraordinary lives of ordinary people.

Since 1989, Binnie has been a violist with Symphony Nova Scotia. She lives in Halifax with her husband and two children. Harbour View is Binnie’s first novella.






Binnie Brennan’s short stories have appeared in a number of Canadian and American journals, including The Wascana Review, Existere, and The Adirondack Review. In 2007 her children’s story A Spider’s Tale was adapted for the stage featuring Symphony Nova Scotia. Binnie is an alumna of the Humber School for Writers, where she was mentored by MG Vassanji and Alistair MacLeod. Born in Toronto, Binnie lives in Halifax with her husband and two children; she is a violist with Symphony Nova Scotia, a position she has held since 1989. Harbour View is her first novella and a co-winner of Quattro Books’ 2009 Ken Klonsky Novella Contest. In 2010 Harbour View was shortlisted for an Atlantic Book Award (The Margaret and John Savage First Book Award).

Binnie Brennan Publicity Shot


Advance Reviews


“In this tender, absorbing novel, Binnie Brennan evokes the magical world of vaudeville and delivers a poignant portrait of its pioneering comic genius, Buster Keaton.”

- Advance review of Like Any Other Monday, Evelyn C. White, author of Alice Walker: A Life

“This novella starts with a single, clear voice and then grows in complexity with the addition of several more distinctive characters until it achieves fine harmony and resonance. By the end of this short work, we have a choir depicting a broad range of human experience.”

– Antanas Sileika, author of Woman in Bronze
“Brennan’s writing is symphonic in nature and scope, her characters so fully human you may think you hear them whisper in your ear. Here is prose filled with surprising microscopic observation; sometimes funny, other times poignant, these details are heart-stopping in their truth and beauty. Structurally brilliant, Brennan’s layered, empathetic storytelling underscores the heart of this novella – we are given not just a view, but a vision of interconnectedness. Harbour View is filled with moments of grace”

– Sheree Fitch, author of Kiss the Joy As It Flies


Atlantic Book Award Media Release


Media Release
For immediate release
Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Quattro Books is pleased to announce that Harbour View, a novella by Halifax author Binnie Brennan, has been short listed for an Atlantic Book Award. The Margaret and John Savage First Book Award will be announced on April 14 at an awards celebration of the Atlantic Book Festival.

“We have in Harbour View an example of great Canadian literature and we are very proud to be part of its success,” says John Calabro, Senior Fiction Editor at Quattro.

The Margaret and John Savage First Book Award, presented for the first time in 2003, recognizes the best first book of fiction or non-fiction written by a first time book published author in Atlantic Canada. Margaret and John Savage were instrumental in establishing the Dartmouth Book and Writing Awards in 1988.

The Atlantic Book Festival will run from April 11 – 18, 2010, with Festival Events in all four Atlantic Provinces ( ). The mandate of the Atlantic Book Awards is “to promote and acknowledge excellence in Atlantic Canadian writing and book publishing through an annual awards ceremony and related events.”