What readers are saying

“A terrific read . . . . “
Joseph Caron, former Canadian Ambassador to Japan

“Knocked my socks off . . .”
Angela Hollinger, President, Canada Japan Society, Vancouver

How to Purchase

Published in both paperback and an e-book

Wholesale enquiries: Heritage House Distribution

“Anne Park Shannon’s book Finding JAPAN could just as well have been titled Finding CANADA.  It is a fabulous collection of stories about Canadians whose lives were shaped by their encounters with Japan, and who laid the foundations of Canada’s reach across the Pacific.”

Yuen Pau Woo, President and CEO – Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada


Beyond the clamour for markets and the march of diplomacy and politics, the real sinews in Canadian interactions with Asia have been people.  This remarkable collection of portraits tells the story of the lives lived, dreams and ambitions, successes and failures, of Canadians who were intrigued by Japan and had an impact on both sides of the Pacific.  Written with wit, flair and vitality, it educates and entertains in vivid ways that academic texts do not.  It is delightful and essential reading for multiple generations interested in the past and future of the sometimes painful, often enriching, and always fascinating intersection of Canadians straddling two shores of one world.

Paul Evans, Professor of Asia Pacific International Relations, Institute of Asian Research, University of British Columbia

…Opens a window on a little known period in Canadian, Japanese and Pacific history (1850-1950)

…Through the eyes of a surprising cast of characters

…And a fascinating collection of photographs and colour images


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Chapter 1:  Inspired Madness

Connection with Japan began earlier than generally supposed. In 1848 Ranald MacDonald, a young half-aboriginal son of a Hudson’s Bay trader, risked his life smuggling himself into Japan when it was still tightly closed to the outside world.

His insurance policy was a sea chest full of books. “I knew that such freight – so strange for a mere castaway from a sailing ship – would naturally excite suspicion; but I had my story, ready . . . “

Table of Contents

About the Author

Anne Park Shannon became interested in early connections westward across the Pacific when she headed the economic and financial policy side of the Canadian Embassy Tokyo . . . .

More about Anne Park Shannon

Contact Anne Park Shannon

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