This small collection of stories that were published between 1938 and 1980 includes a remarkable narrative range, from the closely observed realism of “Rough Answer,” Sheila Watson’s first story, through four stories which represent members of the family of Sophocles’ Oedipus as contemporary and naturalized, to the ritualized mystery of “And the Four Animals.” A Father’s Kingdom is an original New Canadian Library collection.
Sheila Watson was born in New Westminster, B.C., in 1909. After studying at the University of British Columbia and the University of Toronto, she moved to Calgary in the 1950s, where she wrote much of her novel The Double Hook. In 1961, with colleagues at the University of Alberta, she founded and edited White Pelican, an avant-garde journal of literature and the visual arts. In 1992, after her retirement to Nanaimo, B.C., she published Deep Hollow Creek, a novel she had written in the 1930s. Sheila Watson died in Nanaimo, B.C., in 1998.