A Great Game

A Great Game: The Forgotten Leafs and the Rise of Professional Hockey is a 2013 non-fiction book by Stephen Harper concerning the history of professional ice hockey in Canada during the early 20th century.

A Great Game: The Forgotten Leafs and the Rise of Professional Hockey
A Great Game.jpg
AuthorStephen J. Harper
Subjecthockey history
Published2013 (Simon & Schuster)
Media typePrint (hardcover)


The book follows the development of Toronto's earliest professional hockey teams, particularly the Toronto Professional Hockey Club (1906–09) and the Toronto Blueshirts (from 1911).[1] Prior to this, the development of professional teams was fiercely opposed by the Ontario Hockey Association and by Toronto Telegram publisher John Ross Robertson.[2]


Harper wrote the book over an eight-year period.[1] It was released on 5 November 2013 by Simon & Schuster.[1] Proceeds from the book's sales support the Canadian Forces Personnel and Family Support Services.[3] The book also covers other aspects of the early-century game such as the development of artificial ice rinks.[4]


Perry Lefko's negative review in Quill & Quire deemed that the book "reads like a long-winded essay or thesis from a hockey historian".[5] Globe and Mail reviewer John Allemang noted that "[v]erbal amateurism apart, it's enjoyable to catch traces of a more boyish, playful Stephen Harper".[4] The Toronto Star review of the book also noted the academic style of the book but indicated the presentation of early 20th-century hockey provided a "historical perspective that has received scant attention among all the books devoted to hockey".[1]


  1. ^ a b c d DiManno, Rosie (5 November 2013). "Stephen Harper on his game with new hockey book: DiManno". Toronto Star. Retrieved 18 November 2013.
  2. ^ Selley, Chris (5 November 2013). "Stephen Harper's long-awaited hockey history is exhaustive, exhausting". National Post. Archived from the original on 10 November 2013. Retrieved 19 November 2013.
  3. ^ The Canadian Press (4 September 2013). "Prime minister's hockey book to hit store shelves in early November". Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved 18 November 2013.
  4. ^ a b Allemang, John (8 November 2013). "A Great Game: Stephen Harper's new book revels in hockey nostalgia, but leaves the analysis for others". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 18 November 2013.
  5. ^ Lefko, Perry (December 2013). "A Great Game: The Forgotten Leafs and the Rise of Professional Hockey". Quill & Quire. Retrieved 18 November 2013.

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