Reviews

50 MISSION CAP

• “50 Mission Cap introduces a compelling new character — the young Scott MacGregor, a strong hockey player fighting to deal with family tragedy while playing well enough to get a scholarship for college and help his underdog team win the championship. Through MacGregor, 50 Mission Cap presents an impressively complex look at young athletes and the potentially disastrous effects of the pressure placed upon them. Never shying away from difficult issues, the novel deals with love, crime, molestation, illness and the intricate bonds between players and their coaches and parents. The novelʼs more periphery characters — from the cross-dressing arena owner to the colorful young men who make up the Kildare Kougars — are also impressive.” – Writerʼs Digest, 2002

• “Based on his experiences and observations while covering junior hockey, Brijbassi creates a compelling story that bridges the narrow gap between fiction and reality. His narrative brings into focus the pressure that is put on young athletes who are asked to carry the burden of the expectations of an entire community.” – Pembroke Observer, 2001

“KILL YOUR IDOLS” ESSAY

• “Newsday editor Adrian Brijbassi writes hilariously about the horrors of Led Zeppelinʼs ʻStairway to Heavenʼ at a high school dance, where the song veers distressingly from makeout-slow to headbanger-heavy.” – MSNBC, 2004

• “When Adrian Brijbassi takes you second by awkward second through an early adolescent love scene set to ʻStairway to Heavenʼ, you cannot help but smile. I felt like it was my life being played out.” -Rich Quinlan, Jersey Beat, 2004

“FALLING FOR BUENOS AIRES” TRAVEL ARTICLE

• “BA receives her fair share of virgin travel writers who arrive, fall in love, and share their adventure with the readers back home in Shaker Heights or Des Moines. The same could be said of Adrian Brijbassi of the Toronto Star, but his Travel Ode to BA put this travel writer on a different plateau with a level of street cred rarely seen in first-time visitors.

First and foremost, he did not describe BA as the Paris of South America, the lamest of monikers that doesn’t do the city justice. Brijbassi to the rescue. He explains why BA is the Paris (wide boulevards and architecture), NYC (talented artists everywhere), Barcelona (epic nightlife) and Rome (The Teatro Colon) of Latin America.

Dig a little deeper and you see why Brijbassi earns additional ‘buena imagen en la calle’: he and Star Travel Editor Jim Byers are circling the globe on The Grand Tour in search of ’10 of the world’s most outstanding destinations.’ Byers and Brijbassi chose Buenos Aires along with Rome, Tokyo, Cape Town, Dubai, St. Petersburg, Maui, Sydney and two more cities to be determined.

Brijbassi’s review runneth over with appreciation, passion and finally more BA street cred for his selections of Where to Stay (Alvear Palace), Where to Eat (El Mirasol), and Where to Dance (Asia de Cuba). And one final observation seals this BA travel review as one for the ages: ‘Even in Buenos Aires’ less vivacious neighbourhoods, you sense the confidence of a world-class city that knows it can survive any turmoil. You also feel people’s pride in living here.’ Amen. (The Grand Tour: Buenos Aires)” – Invest BA, Nov. 29, 2010

“HOW I OVERCAME MY PREJUDICE AGAINST BUFFALO” TRAVEL ARTICLE

• “If you haven’t already read the article by Toronto-based travel writer Adrian Brijbassi that’s sweeping across Buffalonians’ Facebook pages and Twitter feeds, give it a glance.

Brijbassi doesn’t necessarily gush endlessly about Buffalo’s beauty and splendor, but he does do something that many other non-WNYers don’t do: he gives our city a chance, and he encourages others to do the same.

The review of Buffalo is framed perfectly. Instead of leading with a background on our infamous snowstorms and chicken wings, Brijbassi starts with his first Buffalo experience where he encounters a customs officer who seems worried that another outsider would undercut the Queen City. If you, like I, was born and raised in the Buffalo area, you know exactly what that customs officer was thinking, because you also have defended your home hometown in the same way. Just this past weekend, I visited friends in New York City, and when the topic of Buffalo winters came up, everyone looked at me with crazy eyes when I proclaimed, ‘I actually love snow. Winter is my favorite season.’

Buffalo’s not the ideal place for everyone, but for those who chose to stay here—or like me, left town and then chose to move back years later—we have our reasons for loving this place. And for the naysayers who will never visit the City of Good Neighbors based on prejudices, they’ll never experience the rich history, breathtaking architecture, lively food scene and charming arts communities. What’s worse, they’ll never have a chance to get to know us, the people of Buffalo. And, as Brijbassi said, ‘Most of all, though, I was charmed by Buffalonians themselves.'” – S.J. Velasquez, Buffalo.com, June 2011

“PERFECT WEEKEND IN KINGSTON” TRAVEL ARTICLE

• “Late last month, Star columnist Adrian Brijbassi visited various destinations in Limestone City, which he highlighted in an article titled: Perfect Weekend in Kingston: Markets, history and relaxation. Brijbassi paid Kingston some very kind compliments, as he remarked that our city is ‘stocked with credible restaurants…unique experiences that are educational, reasonably priced and easy to reach.’ I have long been an advocate for being a tourist in my own backyard, striving to take in new experiences each season, such as last Summer’s Haunted Walk, the Kingston Symphony at Fort Henry, the Sir John A. MacDonald walking tour, and the list goes on.  I can’t wait to see what this summer has in store, and am pleased to see that Brijbassi is spreading the good word about Kingston’s charms.

Whenever visitors express their love for the Limestone City, I tend to bask in the reflected glory, and take the compliment personally.  After all, I choose to live here, and as much as Kingston has helped to shape me as a person, I take a small amount of credit for helping make it such a great place.  … It’s always interesting to learn what visitors and tourists enjoyed most in our city, while Brijbassi’s list does a decent job of highlighting many of our favourite haunts. … Obviously Brijbassi was only here for a weekend, so he couldn’t see or write about it all.  Having said that, I think that his list does a decent job presenting Kingston as a great place to visit, appealing to foodies, history buffs and folks who like the small city atmosphere.” – Harvey Kirkpatrick, Kingstonist.com, June 14, 2011

CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS

• “Elevation PR came to my rescue at a time when I was in desperate need of a creative content writer that would understand my target audience and marketing needs. Adrian [Brijbassi] is a brilliant writer and so easy to work with. His writing is fresh and to the point. Working with Elevation has been easy and enjoyable. I truly feel like I’m being taken care of on all ends and have created a wonderful working relationship as well.” – D’Layna Huguez-Dixon, Vocal Downloads

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