A BITTERSWEET TALE OF ISOLATION: Michael Crummey’s Sweetland

Adding this one to my “to read” list… Do you have any favourites you think I should add?

Barda Book Talk

Sweetland_Cover 

Sweetland
by Michael Crummey
Random House of Canada
Available August 19, 2014
320 pages, $32.00

Michael Crummey brings an isolated, austere landscape and its unforgettable inhabitants to life in his latest novel Sweetland.  He paints the harsh life of the East Coast with frank simplicity. Never over-the-top. Always genuine:

“The ferry sailed by the breakwater through a blear of rain. The ocean beyond in an uproar. The deckhands hunched in neon-yellow slickers as they threw down the hawsers and winched the gangplank to the government wharf.”

The community of Sweetland —a remote Newfoundland island— awaits resettlement. Most islanders embrace the opportunity to start a new life in more hospitable towns —except for a couple old men, including stubborn Moses Sweetland. The 69-year-old man’s refusal to accept the government’s monetary offer for relocation is a hindrance to the others. Moses starts receiving threats: anonymous letters tucked in his cupboards and mutilated…

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