“There are things that it is impossible to learn when you are young, no matter how much you read and study.” The season of fury and wonder, in Sharon Butala’s world, is the old age of women. These stories present the lives of old women – women of experience, who’ve seen much of life, who’ve tasted of its sweetness and its bitter possibilities, and have developed opinions and come to conclusions about what it all amounts to. These are stories of today’s old women, who understand that they have been created by their pasts.
But there’s another layer to this standard-setting example of “cronelit.” Not content to rest on her considerable literary laurels, Sharon Butala continues to push the boundaries of her art. The stories in Season of Fury and Wonder are all reactions to other, classic, works of literature that she has encountered and admired. These stories are, in their various ways, inspired by and tributes to works by the likes of Raymond Carver, WillaCather, James Joyce, Shirley Jackson, Flannery O’Conner, John Cheever, Alan Sillitoe, Ernest Hemmingway, Tim O’Brien, Edgar Allan Poe and Anton Checkov.
Sharon Butala is the author of nineteen books of fiction and nonfiction, numerous essays and articles, some poetry and five produced plays. She published her first novel in 1984, Country of the Heart, which was nominated for the Books in Canada First Novel Award, followed closely by a collection of short stories, Queen of the Headaches. She was born in Nipawin, Saskatchewan. After graduating from the University of Saskatchewan, she taught English in Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Nova Scotia. She eventually returned to Saskatoon, before moving near Eastend, Saskatchewan, to live on her husband, Peter Butala's ranch. Sharon's books have been on the Canadian bestseller lists, including her memoir, The Perfection of the Morning, which reached #1 in July 1994 and remained on the list for over a year. Most recently, Wild Rose was also on the bestseller lists. Sharon has read all over Canada and in the United States as well as in Mexico, the Czech Republic, and Ireland. She has been a guest at nearly every literary festival in Canada and some US festivals, as well as teaching literally dozens of writing workshops. Sharon has been a guest at the Geography of Hope" conference on Wallace Stegner, at Point Reyes Station, California. She has also been a guest speaker at Speak to the Wild: a multi-disciplinary gathering dedicated to the politics and poetics of wilderness, at Wells Gray Provincial Park, BC. She is also in demand as a lecturer, having spoken recently at the Edmonton Jung Forum, the Banff Centre for the Arts Book Discussion Weekend, the "Books 'n' Brunch" series in Toronto, the UBC and Hollyhock's "Summer Speakers' Series" in Vancouver, the Vancouver Institute, and was a keynote speaker at the narratology conference at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick, among other engagements. Sharon has also been a keynote speaker at the International Grasslands conference and delivered the inaugural annual lecture at University of Saskatchewan Creative Writing program."
"In Sharon Butala's short-story collection, aging characters refuse to go gentle into that good night." —The Calgary Herald
“A book of moving short stories and an outstanding contribution to Canadian literature…” —Kerby News