As I was mentioning yesterday in one my posts, I have received through good fortune, an advance copy of the Hockey Hall Of Fame publication "Honoured Canadiens".
In a word ot two, the book is simply a treat.
Salivate, Habs fans!
Start singing "Oh, Christmas Tree!"
The 242 page testimonial to Habs greatness is a beautifully packaged and well written accounting of 54 individual careers.
If you have been following the Canadiens centennial updates, these profiles within are the 54 players, managers, and builders about to be honoured in the Habs "Ring Of Honour".
The book is chronologically paced by year of Hall Of Fame induction, beginning with Howie Morenz and ending with Patrick Roy.
The layout of pictures and text, as you will see below, is plain but stately. The design allows for photos, both iconic and candid, as well as for the individual bios, to speak for themselves.
The cover wrap features an embossed CH logo and the inner sleeves contain black and white photos tinted in blue.
If ever you have owned previous publications by the Hockey Hall, I can assure you that this one Habs tome is la creme de la creme.
The photos are captivating for one thing, but accompanying text takes the book to another level.
Each individual player is documented with great precision and perspective. As you know, at this site, I have done much historical research into the hockey club, and when it comes to vital player information, this book leaves few stones unturned.
The player bios are all encompassing in their breadth. Beyond spelling out the player's careers, all their Canadiens stats are layed out. Depending on the player, a sidebar feature story either lets readers understand their uniqueness, or spells out the worthiness of their career achievements in numbers.
Every player or personality enshrined is given a minimum two page spread. Players whose contributions defined era's, are given additional text accordingly. The Rocket, as you would guess, owns a good ten pages to himself.
Iconic Habs, such as Maurice Richard, Jean Beliveau, and Guy Lafleur, are given the true star treatment. A two page spread of magazine cover shots from their respective era's will bring any Habs fan back to their youth.
Younger fans will be wishing they had time machines.
As the book is as glorious as the Montreal Canadiens tradition surely is, I have but one personal, miniscule qualm.
My hometown hero, Edouard "Newsy" Lalonde is given the minimum two page treatment, despite the fact that he helped define the Canadiens first two decades of existance.
One final note of mention, on the book's final page is a special serial number and invitation to a website that is yet to be on line. I sense additional goodies there, in time. Hopefully the copy you purchase has it as well.
Here are a handful....okay an All Star game's worth of hands full...of images from "Honoured Canadiens". This is the tip of the iceberg, folks.
I don't know about you, but it reminds me of time long ago, when a certain blue eyed brunette first uttered the words, "You know you want it!"