Keep on rolling on a ‘River’ .. and more

Read. Watch. Listen. introduces you to the personal side of our faculty, staff and alumni. Participants are asked to answer three simple questions about their reading, viewing and listening habits – what one book or newspaper/magazine article is grabbing your attention; what one movie or television show has caught your eye; and what album/song, podcast or radio show are you lending an ear to.

Helen Connell is the Associate Vice-President (Communications and Public Affairs).

Today, she takes a turn on Read. Watch. Listen.

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When Nora Lawrence wakes to find that her 46-year-old husband is lying stone-cold dead beside her, she screams, something author Joan Barfoot tells her readers is out of character for Nora. That’s Luck for you. Luck was Barfoot’s 10th novel and I love the way she used her wit and wisdom to remind readers that all of us are subject to the whims of chance to some extent. And what feels unlucky can prove later to be a great piece of luck.


I’m partial to British drama and mysteries, but the show I most often recommend is a funny, heart-warming miniseries called Last Tango in Halifax. Set in northern England, it’s the story of two elderly people who had a brief romance when they were young. When they meet decades later, they fall in love all over again. Their romance is challenged by all the emotional baggage they’ve collected over the years, including that each has a well-meaning daughter.


I don’t have a preferred musical genus, let alone a favourite song. It can be Motown, country, rock, jazz or reggae. It all depends on how I am feeling. As I write this, I’m listening to Julie London’s version of Cry Me a River. Very mellow. Very nice.

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If you have a suggestion for someone you would like to see in Read. Watch. Listen., or would like to participate yourself, drop a line to