A haunting canvas of jealousy, betrayal and atonement that can take its rightful place alongside Fall on Your Knees and Mercy Among the Children.
1970. A tiny fisherman’s shack on the dark Nova Scotia coast, eccentrically covered with folk art images (à la Maud Lewis), which are all the work of a benign, disfigured mute whom the locals dismiss as a misshapen nobody. Miss Elva. Only one man knows that the whimsical, primitive art old Elva painfully creates is her voice, damning the madness of love and lamenting decades of lies.
He is also the only person still alive who remembers Elva as she was in the summer of 1927, a crippled little thing in the shadow of her beautiful half-sister, Jane. That peculiar summer of snow and rum-runners when the black sheep Gil returned to a troubled town for his father’s funeral, dogged by sin and retribution — only to find that his handsome twin brother, Dom, has become Jane’s lover. The unhappy reunion breeds rivalry and self-loathing, complicated by racial violence and religious intolerance. And Elva, missing nothing and hoping to free those she loves from pain, unwittingly unleashes the fire that destroys them all.
A master of narrative tension, Stephens Gerard Malone saves one last twist for the end — the “miracle” of redemption — driving home his evocative tale of jealousy and its disturbing consequences.
From the Hardcover edition.
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Published April 13, 2011
by Vintage Canada.
Literature & Fiction.