About Whit Fraser, Author of True North Rising – 2019 NorthWords Book Prize

Hello – I’m Whit Fraser.

I’ve been a reporter since April 1967 when I first stepped foot in Iqaluit. Back then, it was called Frobisher Bay. I soon realized that I had stumbled upon the best unfolding story in Canada. I haven’t changed my mind!

 Dear Friend and author Elizabeth Hay calls it a “ love affair”. Who am I to argue with a distinguished Gillerprize winner?

 For many years, I worked for the CBC. My work took me into every community in Canada’s three northern Territories and much of the circumpolar world.  Good luck put me in the front row for historic events that shaped todays north and in fact Canada itself, including the McKenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry, Constitutional negotiations that enshrined aboriginal rights in the Canadian Constitution of Canada; Aboriginal Land Claims from initial concept and demands through to the final Agreements. I was there when Inuit made their initial demand for their own Territory and Homeland and I was there when Nunavut became a reality.  

 In every story, I discovered the unwavering commitment and courage of a cadre of northern people.  The story of our new north rising is very much a human story.

 My understanding became even richer after I headed up the Canadian Polar Commission and as the executive director of Inuit TapiriitKanatami, the national Inuit organization.

 I wrote the book because that’s what reporters do when they have a very good story. They write it down and share it. I felt it important that others know more about Canada’s North and its impact for the country as a whole.

Northern newspapers are unanimous in calling True North Rising, “a must read for anyone interested in Canada’s North.”

 It is available right here or by asking for it from your favourite independent bookseller. Personalized signed copies are available.

You can check out my availability for speaking events on this page or contact me at Whit@WhitFraser.ca or follow me on Facebook right here Whit Fraser on Facebook.

Buy your copy of True North Rising

I’m celebrating the news that True North Rising is the winner of the 2019 NorthWords Book prize. Haven’t read it yet?  Order today and get FREE SHIPPING ANYWHERE IN NORTH AMERICA

What people are saying about True North Rising

True North Rising is really a deeply moving love story—for a place, a certain woman, a family of friends and colleagues, and a set of principles and aspirations. I couldn’t put it down.

Elizabeth Hay

author of Late Nights on Air, Giller Prize winner

For half a century [Whit Fraser] has been Canada’s “Northern Storyteller,” a tough and elegant reporter, at times an activist, and always, always one who believed in the Far North, its people, and its vital importance to Canada and the world.

Roy MacGregor

author of Canoe Country: The Making of Canada

I have enjoyed the read immensely. As one who never travelled the north and only mildly involved with the politics of the north and its peoples I have learned more about our history in a few hours with your book than I ever did in past years.  Thank you so much.

Glenn B. Powell

Oakville ON

Congratulations Whit. Your book is better than a “good read”– it’s a “very fine read”. Many of the characters/ leaders you introduce I too knew or met during my career. Many of the issues/ subjects/stories that you relate I am familiar with. I found all of your recounting of history that I am familiar with to be dead accurate career. Your postscript re the issues today is spot on.

James Moore

career public servant on Northern issues

It is a very compelling read. The emotion, love and respect for individuals, passion for the injustices and obvious sense of belonging come through in every chapter. Well done.

Elly Alboim

Ottawa ON

Whit, just finished reading your book. Took a while to get it away from my wife. We both thoroughly enjoyed it. You certainly bring the characters alive and the book presents a whole new perspective on what has happened and what is happening in the north. All in all an excellent book.

John Brehaut

Charlottetown PEI

I really enjoyed True North Rising. Loved all the stories, people, moments, issues – it was a powerful mix of events and perspectives, yet packaged in such an engaging, familiar, warm manner – as if I, as reader, was invited into this intimate space and granted a privileged opportunity to sit down with an ole’ storyteller to hear his life journey(s). This book, Whit, is a real gift that you have given Canadians (and beyond)

Diz Glithero

Chelsea QC

An expression of abiding love for Northern Canada and its people, True North Rising is an irresistible collection of stories, rants, and intimate confessions.  Insights into a turbulent period that’s now passed into history this makes this a must-read for anyone interested in Northern Canada.

Jim Bell

Nunatsiaq News

Whit Fraser presents a perspective on Canada that few of us have the opportunity to experience; enjoy True North Rising!

The Presbyterian Connection

I have, with great interest, completed reading your book.

I, have never before been exposed to the issues which confront our northern countrymen/women that you have presented to me in the book.

I shall view matters with a new and perhaps cleared lens thanks to yourself and your observations and feelings. Thanks for the book and the eye opener.

Bill Sinclair

Stellarton Nova Scotia


“The North through a different lens” True North Rising: Author reflects on political history of the North in new book — CBC News

The book is a compelling read. Best of all it’s a love story…” — Book review, Jim Moore, The Millstone News

A Warm Arctic Welcome for Whit Fraser and True North Rising

Whit’s recent visit to his old haunts in Iqaluit and Yellowknife brought out old friends and colleagues; he was recognized on the street, in the airport, in the coffee shop, and each time was greeted with a warm hug. Read Article

Massey College Toronto Hosts an Engaging True North Rising Launch

Massey College Toronto Hosts an Engaging True North Rising Launch

Host Tom Axworthy, Distinguished Fellow, Munk School Of Global Affairs And Public Policy, presents Whit to an appreciative audience for a brief reading and a question and answer session.

True North Rising is available at the following bookstores:

Books on Beechwood
35 Beechwood Avenue
Ottawa, ON K1M 1M1


Perfect Books Ottawa
258 Elgin Street
Ottawa, ON K2P 1L9


Mill Street Books
52 Mill Street
Almonte, ON K0A 1A0


Ben McNally Books Toronto
366 Bay Street
Toronto, ON M5H 4B2


Algonquin College Book Store, Pembroke
1 College Way
Pembroke, ON K8A 0C8


Canadian Canoe Museum
910 Monaghan Road
Peterborough, ON K9J 5K4

Bookmark Charlottetown
172 Queen Street
Charlottetown, PE C1A 4B5


Bookmark Halifax
5686 Spring Garden Road
Halifax, NS B3J 1H5


The Yellowknife Book Cellar
4921 49 Street
Yellowknife, NT X1A 2N9


Iqaluit, NU X0A 0H0


15-2 Tugliq Street, Box 599
Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, X0C 0G0


The Yellowknife Bookseller
4921 49 Street, PO Box 1256
Yellowknife, NT X1A 2N9

Meet the Author

Public Events

Event: Ernest Buckler Literary Event
Saturday, June 29, 2019
Bridgetown Nova Scotia 

About: Live Reading Where We Live

Event: Resident Northern Speaker and Storyteller Arctic Adventures- High Arctic Explorer Tour
August 6-18 2019
Resolute Bay to Greenland

Past Events

Event: Algonquin College Speaker Series Presents… Whit Fraser: True North Rising
Where: Algonquin College Pembroke Campus, 1 College Way, Pembroke, ON K8A 0C8

Tickets RequiredRegister and purchase online

Event: Book signing & reading
Where: Tivi Boutique, Kuujjuaq Quebec

Event: Books on Beechwood
Where: Table 40 at Fraser Café, 7 Springfield Road, Ottawa, Ontario K1M 1C8
About: book reading, discussion and dinner

Event: Ottawa introduction of True North Rising
Where: Museum of Nature, 240 McLeod St, Ottawa, Ontario K2P 2R1
About: reading, questions, public welcome


email: whitgrantfraser@gmail.com
phone: 613-355-7304