Here's a preview to show you what's in my second book Trackside with VIA: Cross-Canada Compendium. The book contains a nice mix of text, photos and data. (All the photos in this post are clickable - feel free to click on each one to inspect the contents in detail!) Compared to my last book, this is a huge change in content. I've written the text by weaving numerous sources together on each topic. Photos and some data has been contributed by my six contributors, as well as some other very helpful individuals. I must say thank you to them all, for this book would be much diminished without their illustrious contributions. The cover (above) features VIA rolling stock from various eras. I never tire of seeing those blue & yellow cars! There are over 50 colour photos in this book as well as over 220 black & white photos:
The colour page (above) features trains of Western Canada - transcontinentals and trains to Northern Manitoba to Prince Rupert. I'm very pleased with the colour reproduction. Bryan Babcock and Allan Graphics has nailed it. There are a total of 8 colour pages, including cover covers front and rear. The colour pages include ex-CP E & F-units, F40PH-2's and trains from all parts of VIA's network. Here are some sample pages of the book's interior - the HEP program and its equipment:
Here's the last page of the section on VIA's motive power, its newest F40/P42 fleet, as well as the beginning of the VIA Motive Power Summary section, which includes snapshots of select VIA motive power in various eras, over several days in each era. Throughout the books, small blocks of text that I've entitled triVIA highlight VIA factoids that didn't fit in anywhere else, but that I found interesting and I trust you will too:
VIA rostered many unique cars, and I've included information on them and photos where available. It really gives us pause to reflect on the variety and diversity of VIA's fleet:
I kept tripping over information on the disposition of VIA's equipment. Though I realize the equipment on CN's passenger fleet was included in other publications, I've never seen a listing with all types of VIA equipment...locomotives, RDC's , coaches and sleeping cars, and more. This section ended up filling nine pages!
The back cover showcases more photos that I wanted to share...and serves as a bit of a teaser. Notice the Amroad-painted CP F-units! Just a snapshot of the equipment operating on and around the VIA Rail network, again, covering all eras. I'm really pleased with the graphic design that Bryan has used, and the covers certainly maintain a 'family resemblance' to my first book. Bravo Bryan!
So there you have our sneak peek. Rest assured there are many more pages like this in the book. I'm pleased with the photo reproduction inside, and the black & white photos look great on the heavyweight paper stock. In this book, you'll find information and photos of VIA's trains that you absolutely have not seen anywhere else. It's organized into sections, but if you're like me, you will find yourself flipping pages to see what's on the next page, and what's in the next section. I trust this book will provide value for the price, as well as serving as a valuable and useful reference for the modeller, novice VIA enthusiast or the most seasoned VIAphile among us!