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Fairy Ring
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Monday March 29, 2010 in Books

Fairy Ring

By Martine Desjardins
Translated by Fred A. Reed & David Homel

In 1895, the arctic explorer Captain Ian Ryder has let his house in Blackpool on the Nova Scotia coast to the recently married Clara Weiss, who is about to become the compass of a social circle far too intimate for its own good. Lost in a maze of obsessive Victorian pseudo-science and its ignorant fascinations with violence, spiritualism, the reanimation of corpses, the channelling of passions, and especially with the control of every aspect and function of the body, particularly the bodies of women, these characters are increasingly rendered impotent by the collision of their fantasies with their repressions—the sadism of their lust to penetrate others, and the masochism of their own constricted closures.

As Captain Ryder says of his crew as his claustrophobic ship continues to drift, trapped in the harsh white light of the polar ice: “How repelled I feel by this promiscuity with individuals for whom I truly feel nothing but aversion.”

Set in the year Freud published his ground-breaking essay on hysteria, this is a compulsively readable, beautiful and dark novel of personal relations so close they verge on the incestuous, and desires so vast they approach the cold crystalline purity of the archetype.

ISBN 13: 9780889224490 | ISBN 10: 889224498
6 W x 9 H x 1 D inches | 224 pages
$24.95 CAN / $19.95 US
Rights: World
Backlist | Fiction | Bisac: FIC019000

AWARDS

Winner of the 2001 Governor General’s Literary Award for Translation

About the Contributors

Martine Desjardins

Martine Desjardins was born in the Town of Mount Royal, Quebec, in 1957. She worked as an assistant editor-in-chief at ELLE Québec magazine for four years before leaving to devote herself to writing. Her first novel, Le cercle de Clara, was published by Leméac in 1997, and was nominated for both the Prix littéraires du Québec and the Grand prix des lectrices de ELLE Québec in 1998. Desjardins currently lives in the Town of Mount Royal. In her free time, she paints miniature models of ruins overgrown with vegetation.

Fred A. Reed

International journalist and award-winning literary translator Fred A. Reed is also a respected specialist on politics and religion in the Middle East. Reed is a three-time winner of the Governor General’s Award for translation.

David Homel

Award-winning author and literary translator David Homel also works as a journalist, editor and screenwriter.

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