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category: Fiction
published: Nov 2010
ISBN:9780864925978

The Republic of Nothing

by Lesley Choyce, afterword by Neil Peart

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literary, coming of age
0 of 5
0 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $11.99
edition:eBook
also available: Paperback Paperback
category: Fiction
published: Nov 2010
ISBN:9780864925978
Description

Winner, Best Atlantic Published Book Award

Shortlisted, Canadian Regional Design Awardmet-a-mor-pho-sis: a complete change of form, structure, or substance, as transformation by magic or witchcraft.

In May of 1896, a young magician from New York City joined the cast of the Marco Magic Company and embarked on a summer-long tour of eastern Canada, including New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. It was during this excursion that Handcuff Harry AKA Harry Houdini first showcased the talent that transformed him from a small-time conjurer, who performed for pennies in dime museums, into the world's most celebrated escape artist. When he wasn't performing on stage, Houdini was barnstorming through the streets of every town and city he visited, astounding onlookers in police stations, hardware stores and hospitals by freeing himself from the clutches of every restraining device strapped or wrapped around him.

In this absorbing book, enriched by rare, period photographs, Bruce MacNab recounts a fascinating but shockingly untold chapter in the career of the man whose name is still synonymous with the word magic.

About the Authors
Lesley Choyce was born in New Jersey in 1951 and moved to Canada in 1978. He teaches part-time at Dalhousie University, runs Pottersfield Press and has written 52 adult and young adult books. Lesley surfs year round in the North Atlantic and is considered the father of transcendental wood splitting. He lives with his wife and two daughters in a 200-year-old farmhouse at Lawrencetown Beach overlooking the ocean. As a member of the Surf Poets he has released a poetry/music album titled Long Lost Planet.
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Neil Peart is the drummer for the Canadian band Rush.
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Awards
  • Winner, Dartmouth Book Award
  • Short-listed, Atlantic Booksellers' Choice Award
  • Short-listed, Atlantic Booksellers Choice Award
Editorial Reviews

"Choyce takes this deceptively simple story and ... fills it with characters who are wry, warm, funny, and magical. This is by far the author's best novel."

— <i>Canadian Book Review Annual</i>

"Radiant with energy."

— <i>Winnipeg Free Press</i>

"A national treasure."

— <i>Ottawa Citizen</i>

"The written word is a powerful tool in Lesley Choyce's hands."

— <i>Vancouver Sun</i>

"The writing is reminiscent, both in wit and sensibility, of Stephen Leacock and Garrison Keillor."

— <i>Quill & Quire</i>

"An unpredictable universe ... It's this unpredictability that makes the novel a success."

— <i>Calgary Herald</i>

"A triple-decker of a yarn shot through with mythic possibilities, it's part fairy tale, part adventure story and part coming-of-age testimonial; it manages to be earnest and absurd, poetic and humorous all at once ... a pleasure to read."

— <i>Globe and Mail</i>

"The Republic of Nothing weaves an intricate, sometimes hilarious, sometimes tragic narrative."

— <i>Daily Gleaner</i>

"A contemporary classic in Canadian literature."

— <i>Telegraph Journal</i>

"The Republic of Nothing definitely has something to it."

— <i>FFWD</i>

"This is Choyce's best book yet ... a reminder that we all need to keep a little creative anarchy in our lives."

— <i>Mail-Star</i>

"A little gem of a story that should be granted its appropriate label as a Canadian version of [Salman Rushdie's] Midnight's Children."

— <i>Montreal Gazette</i>

"Don't miss The Republic of Nothing."

— <i>Guardian</i>

"The fact that the book has lasted for 10 years is a testimony to its popularity in these days when few books retain any life or fame after a year."

— <i>Chronicle Herald</i>

"Quirky yet compelling drama."

— <i>Midwest Book Review</i>

"The Republic of Nothing is an unpredictable universe ... It's this unpredictability that makes the novel a success."

— <i>Calgary Herald</i>

"Choyce has mastered the skill of an old-fashioned story-teller."

— <i>Cormorant</i>

"The Republic of Nothing is the product of a sprawling and original literary imagination, bustling with colourful and sympathetic characters, bursting with fanciful incident, and propelled by a relentless narrative drive. It is, quite simply, a good read."

— <i>Pottersfield Portfolio</i>

"If you need a little Zen in your life, The Republic of Nothing is a good way to learn to extricate yourself from the beaten path and find the wonder of nothingness."

— <i>Brunswickan</i>

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