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[Scroll straight to the bottom to see the new cover right away!]
It’s a splendid moon-filled night at Coley’s Point in August, 1926. Eighteen-year-old Jacob Mercer has returned from Toronto to the tiny Newfoundland outport, hoping to win back his former sweetheart, Mary Snow. But Mary has become engaged to wealthy Jerome McKenzie, and she is still hurt and bewildered by Jacob’s abrupt departure a year earlier. She will not be easily wooed.
This is the premise of David French’s play, Salt-Water Moon…
The third play in French’s Mercer family saga (preceded by Leaving Home and Of the Fields, Lately), Salt-Water Moon premiered in the mid-1980s and enjoyed much success. It won the 1985 Canadian Authors Association Literary Award for Drama, the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play, a Hollywood Drama-Logue Critics Award, and an ACTRA Award. It was also a finalist for both the Chalmers Award and the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama.
From 1988 until the end of 2016, Salt-Water Moon was in print with its original cover, which featured rad 1980s type design (a little too rad, we have since decided…) and a production still from one of the original productions of this sweet play, as you can see below:
French passed away in 2010, leaving a remarkable legacy in Canadian theatre. The Globe and Mail introduced and summarized his contributions well in a tribute written by Albert Schultz, the founding artistic director of Soulpepper Theatre Company. Talonbooks is privileged to have published ten of his wonderful plays and adaptations (see them here, along the right-hand column).
Just a few years after French’s passing, as the thirtieth anniversary of Salt-Water Moon draws near, we are pleased to observe that it’s having a bit of a revival; three productions of Salt-Water Moon were mounted across Canada in 2016 – and the new reviews continue to sing its praises:
“[Ravi Jain’s 2016 production] sheds a new light on Jacob’s relationship with his father. … But more than anything, … Jacob and Mary are two people trying to balance love, independence and responsibility. … It does what any good production of a classic does: reminds us why it’s a classic in the first place.”—Toronto Star
“The [2016 Factory Theatre] production, with no designer credited, is visually beguiling, as befits a play about a moonlit courtship. … [the] ending … is magically done”—National Post
Now, in response to demand created by the revival, Talonbooks is now reprinting Salt-Water Moon for the eighth time since taking over the publication in 1988 (the play had been published by the Playwrights Union of Canada in Toronto a few years prior). Salt-Water Moon now wears a beautiful new cover, designed by Chloë Filson and featuring a painting by Joel MacMeekin, which was created for Tweed and Company’s Summer 2016 production of Salt-Water Moon in Tweed, Ontario. Without further ado, the new cover:
Order your copy from Talonbooks today for $16.95, and may you enjoy a happy and warm Valentine’s Day!