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list price: $18.95
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
category: Fiction
published: March 2010
ISBN:9781553800996
publisher: Ronsdale Press

Invention of the World, The

by Jack Hodgins

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literary
5 of 5
2 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $18.95
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
category: Fiction
published: March 2010
ISBN:9781553800996
publisher: Ronsdale Press
Description

Jack Hodgins begins The Invention of the World with a ferry worker waving you aboard a ship that will take you not only to Vancouver Island but into a world of magic. The far west coast of Canada has always been regarded as a "land's end" where the eccentrics of the world come to plot out the last best utopia. Hodgins both invents a world and shows how we continually invent that world in all its multiplicity. Past and present intermingle while hilarious farce rubs up against epic tragedy. Intertwined are a love story, a portrait of a nineteenth-century village, a clash between wild loggers and weight-watching town folk who have to wear a pig when they fail to meet their weight goals. Pagan myths rub shoulders with the harsh pioneer days of the British Columbia rainforest. As always with Hodgins, this novel is based on the portrayal of character. At the centre of the mystery is Donal Keneally, the mad Irish messiah who eighty years ago persuaded an entire Irish village to emigrate to Canada, there to become his slaves in the Revelations Colony of Truth. His heir is Maggie Kyle along with her collection of boarders in the old Colony of Truth building. Here truly is a novel that is itself an invention of the world.

About the Author

Jack Hodgins was raised in Merville, on Vancouver Island. He has written seven novels and three short story collections, including Spit Delaney's Island and The Invention of the World. Hodgins’ fiction has won numerous awards, including the Governor General’s Award. He and his wife Dianne live in Victoria, BC.

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Contributor Notes

Jack Hodgins was raised in Merville, on Vancouver Island, and graduated from the University of British Columbia. Until recently, he taught fiction writing at the University of Victoria. His novels and story collections include: Spit Delaney's Island, The Invention of the World, Innocent Cities, Broken Ground, Distance and Damage Done by the Storm.

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Association of Book Publishers of BC
Librarian review

The Invention of the World

This novel, originally published in 1977, bridges the past and present fictive worlds of a Vancouver Island colony. The Irish origins and Celtic backgrounds of many of its inhabitants offer an intriguing chronicle and critique of those who leave one form of servitude to an oppressive master in their homeland only to relinquish their hoped-for freedom to another oppressive master in their new land. The story, with all of its scandals and scuttlebutt, is told from the perspective of larger than life characters such as the recorder of the “history” of the Revelations Colony of Truth, Strabo Becker, and the colony’s oligarchic and tragic leadership in the person of Donal Keneally (the off-spring of a bull-god) and his several wives. The story culminates in the world of the 20th century’s last quarter.

Caution: Some coarse language. There are references to Haida slave raids.

Source: The Association of Book Publishers of BC. BC Books for BC Schools. 2010-2011.

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