A Covenant of SaltFront Cover

ISBN: 9780889225664 | paperback / softback

$17.95 | 160 pages | Pub. Date: 2008 | Edition # 1
5.50 W × 8.50 H × 0.45 D inches
Fiction | Backlist | Bisac: FIC019000
ISBN 13: 9780889225664 | Rights: WORLD

Since the death of her parents in 1791, Lily McEvoy has lived as a recluse in her isolated Armagh County manor with her two maidservants and Titus, the farmhand who has become her whipping boy. But tonight, the heiress is expecting company. Her guest is Master Anselm, the legendary stone cutter who has transformed the estate’s abandoned salt mine into an immense funerary monument to the memory of the McEvoy family, sculpting bas-reliefs in the chapels, crypts and tombs he has carved out of the rock salt of its cavernous walls.

Lily is sniffing powdered salt in the attic as she summons the shadow of her father, the cruel Irish Rear Admiral Magnus McEvoy, hero of the capture of Quebec and absolute master of his estate, and of her mother, the mysterious Laurence, she of the webbed feet who emerged from the river of a stormy night.

But the same salt that has preserved Lily’s memories is desiccating her. Her obsession with the past now risks transforming her, like Lot’s wife, into a pillar of salt—crystallized by the family’s abominable secrets. These secrets, and the instrument of her revenge, she will today finally reveal to Anselm over their precipitous evening meal.

Drawing from the history of the conquest of Quebec and Irish legend, this is an exotic new way to tell a very old story.

By 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.

Read more about Martine Desjardins


Translated by 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.

Read more about Fred A. Reed


Translated by David Homel

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

Read more about David Homel


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