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Historian David Hollis believes he has found a treasure of incalculable value: a trove of old photographs, the earliest pictures ever taken of a great city in its earliest days. The glass negatives, he is certain, were in a strongbox on a ship that sank in the city's harbor a century and a half earlier. That wreck, by his calculations, is beneath a landfill in the process of being excavated for a new sports arena. If construction can be halted for a search, a unique record of the city's birth might be reclaimed for all. David's quest is unfulfilled at the time of his death, and his widow, Marianne, takes up the challenge. Confronting skepticism and resistance, she learns more about Jem Hallam, the immigrant photographer whose pictures become her grail. In a masterful interweaving of two centuries, Consolation unfolds the story of Jem Hallam's life alongside Marianne's search. What brought him from England to the new and still primitive town of Toronto? Why did he leave his wife and children behind? What drove him to photograph this young metropolis in such vivid detail? Consolation moves back and forth between the stories of David's legacy and of Jem Hallam's life, revealing a mysterious connection. Nothing less than survival itself is at stake for Jem Hallam, while love and pride drive Marianne Hollis's effort to vindicate her late husband. Michael Redhill makes each element of his unforgettable story both profound and suspenseful, brilliantly illuminating how time and grief alter the contours of even the things we think we know for certain. It is the work of a writer at the top of his form.
From acclaimed poet and Giller-nominated novelist Michael Redhill comes Fidelity, a subtle but searing collection of short fiction. By turns brooding, strange, and funny,Fidelity probes the blandishments of temptation, the swooning submission to concupiscence, the illusory redemption of desire, the ambivalence at the heart of the most intimate trust, and, most importantly, the irony that when we betray, we betray ourselves first. His characters are not monsters, or really even sinners. Their vulnerabilities are our own: a business-trip affair leaves a man changed in ways he cannot anticipate; a young girl's sexuality inflicts unexpected wounds on her family; the young amanuensis of a 156-year-old Civil War veteran tries to defend his hero from accusations of desertion; a father of four, pressured by his wife to undergo a vasectomy, gradually learns that he is capable of infidelity when he contemplates the intolerable loss of his virility. Spell-binding and crackling with an unflinching attention to emotional detail, Fidelity looks boldly at the transgressions of desire that seduce, and sometimes break, body and soul.
Winner of the Best of the Edinburgh Fringe Prize. Our hero, the recently divorced Michael Redhill, goes to Poland to get away from his life and to do some research on the Holocaust. Thwarted by witnesses unwilling to talk, he returns home via England, but in London is introduced to someone who can tell him a 'real' story of evil, and genocide. Through the memory of the storyteller, who served as a prison guard, he encounters an alleged war criminal with Alzheimer's who is about to be put on trial, along with the man's beautiful daughter and an attorney who is eerily similar to the criminal he's prosecuting. But has the old man's guilt dissolved with his memory? Could he be pretending to be ill in order to escape punishment?Who do we believe? A prison guard still wounded by history? A writer suffering from heartache? A dying war criminal? Who does memory serve? Did the past really happen? And if it did, who has a claim on it? Goodness is a morality tale for the modern age. This remarkable play, by the award-winning author of Building Jerusalem and Martin Sloane, is a Russian-doll: concentric stories enveloping each other, inhabiting the gaps between experiencing, telling and hearing.
An Anchor Books Original. Seventy-four distinguished writers tell personal tales of books loved and lost-great books overlooked, under-read, out of print, stolen, scorned, extinct, or otherwise out of commission.Compiled by the editors of Brick: A Literary Magazine, Lost Classics is a reader's delight: an intriguing and entertaining collection of eulogies for lost books. As the editors have written in a joint introduction to the book, "being lovers of books, we've pulled a scent of these absences behind us our whole reading lives, telling people about books that exist only on our own shelves, or even just in our own memory." Anyone who has ever been changed by a book will find kindred spirits in the pages of Lost Classics.Each of the editors has contributed a lost book essay to this collection, including Michael Ondaatje on Sri Lankan filmmaker Tissa Abeysekara's Bringing Tony Home, a novella about a mutual era of childhood. Also included are Margaret Atwood on sex and death in the scandalous Doctor Glas, first published in Sweden in 1905; Russell Banks on the off-beat travelogue Too Late to Turn Back by Barbara Greene-the "slightly ditzy" cousin of Graham; Bill Richardson on a children's book for adults by Russell Hoban; Ronald Wright on William Golding's Pincher Martin; Caryl Phillips on Michael Mac Liammoir's account of his experiences on the set of Orson Welles's Othello, and much, much more.From the Trade Paperback edition.
The story of a relationship across two decades, of Jolene's search for Martin Sloane when one day he disappears from their home without warning or explanation, is told in a novel that brilliantly and movingly explores the vagaries of love and friendship, the burdens of personal history, and the enigmatic power of art.