Monday, 24 May 2010

Book ~ "Saints of Big Harbour" (2009) Lynn Coady

From Amazon ~ Guy Boucher lives with his overworked mother, his reclusive goth sister and his loud, opinionated, boorishly conservative and usually drunk Uncle Isadore in a small rural Nova Scotia community in the early 1980s. The likable Guy is socially awkward but perceptive and intelligent, with a sharp wit that usually deserts him when he opens his mouth. Guy becomes enamoured of pretty, popular Corinne Fortune, a pampered girl from nearby Big Harbour who rejects him. Caught in a web of lies she's already spun about an imaginary boyfriend, and motivated by a teenager's taste for melodrama, Corinne tells a friend that Guy has treated her brutally. In the way of small communities, her untruths pass from mouth to mouth, gaining momentum until the whole town is worked up in a collective rage over the unwitting Guy, who can't understand why he's getting so many dirty looks. The novel is told from the alternating viewpoints of Guy, Corinne and other supporting characters, including Corinne's serious, sensible best friend, Pam; Corinne's precocious and neurotic older brother, Howard; and Guy's former English teacher, Alison, an American draft dodger and drinking buddy of Isadore's who habitually hangs out (or passes out) at Guy's house and becomes his unlikely mentor.

I started reading this book last year and wasn't digging it so didn't get too far into it ... I guess I wasn't in the mood for it. I enjoyed it this time 'round.

I was born in Nova Scotia and moved to Toronto in 1987 ... I lived in a small town similar to the fictional Big Harbour during the 1980s. The dialogue and types of characters were familiar to me, though I couldn't relate to them all. The story is told by different characters which gives various perspectives.


Sheri said...

Books are like that sometimes, glad you enjoyed it this time :)

Pearl said...

like this Canadian book challenge idea. Maybe if John does a year 4 I'll dip into it. how do you narrow in on which one book per province?