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4.75 stars for Adventures in the Radio Trade by Joe Mahoney #memoir #cbcradio #bookreview

Title: Adventures in the Radio Trade

Author: Joe Mahoney

Genre: Memoir, Entertainment, Radio, Broadcasting, CBC Radio

Book Blurb:

"In dozens of amiable, frequently humorous vignettes... Mahoney fondly recalls his career as a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio technician in this memoir... amusing and highly informative." — Kirkus Reviews

"What a wonderful book! If you love CBC Radio, you'll love Adventures in the Radio Trade. Joe Mahoney's honest, wise, and funny stories from his three decades in broadcasting make for absolutely delightful reading! — Robert J. Sawyer, author of The Oppenheimer Alternative''

"No other book makes me love the CBC more." — Gary Dunford, Page Six


Adventures in the Radio Trade documents a life in radio, largely at Canada's public broadcaster. It's for people who love CBC Radio, those interested in the history of Canadian Broadcasting, and for those who want to hear about close encounters with numerous luminaries such as Margaret Atwood, J. Michael Straczynski, Stuart McLean, Joni Mitchell, Peter Gzowski and more. And it's for people who want to know how to make radio.

Crafted with gentle humour and thoughtfulness, this is more than just a glimpse into the internal workings of CBC Radio. It's also a prose ode to the people and shows that make CBC Radio great.

My Review:

Possibly one of the most interesting autobiographies I have had the pleasure of reading in the last couple of decades. Joe tells his life in the tech area of radio in the much-appreciated chronological fashion. There is a natural flow to this book as you age and grow with Joe on his journey.

The centre of the universe here is his working for CBC Radio. Unless you are Canadian or live near the Canadian border, this venue may be unfamiliar to you. If you have listened to CBC Radio, then this book is the pulling back of the curtain on what you thought you knew.

The stories shared are fun and easy to read. The interaction Joe has from the tech side with both producers and talent is simply fascinating. The circle of life cannot be much different from the person who runs the lights at a concert venue. The person is there but not THERE.

There is both a blessing and a curse about Joe's knowledge of radio tech. For much of the book, the terms and equipment are bantered about in a pretty understandable way. There is only one chapter where the detail of the tech is so overwhelming, it simply loses the reader and the reader loses the story. If that chapter could be reworked to make it just a bit more approachable, then this book would be 5+ stars and up for an award.

I personally enjoyed reading this book. The stories about famous artists and personalities were fun to read. Many times, I said 'oooh I listened to that!' A fun book that should be a must read for every Canadian. This book would be an excellent read for fans of the business of radio. This book is also good for fans of good autobiographies. I would enjoy reading this author's book about his time in management.

My Rating: 4.75 stars

Buy it Now:

Author Biography:

Joe Mahoney has worked full-time for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation for thirty-five years.

He spent a decade making radio plays, working with some of the finest actors, directors, and writers in Canada.

In 2007, Joe left production to join the CBC management team.

Joe has also worked as a story editor on multiple radio, television and film projects.

Joe’s debut novel, A Time and a Place, was published on October 1st 2017 by Five Rivers Press. His memoir about working at CBC Radio, Adventures in the Radio Trade, is due out August 1st 2023.

He is a member of SF Canada, Canada’s National Association of Speculative Fiction Professionals, and SFWA, the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers Association.

He lives in Riverview, NB, with his wife, their Sheltie, Wendy, and their Siberian Forest Cat Lily.

Social Media Links:

Reviewed by: Mr. N


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