The Happiness of Others

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August 1991



"The Happiness of Others" brings together the best stories from Rooke's first two books published in Canada, "The Love Parlour" (Oberon, 1977) and "Cry Evil" (Oberon, 1980), both now out of print, with a selection of stories from "The Broad Back of the Angel" (Fiction Collective, 1977) which was never available in this country. At the centre of this collection is the novella The Street of Moons', which, as Rooke writes in the introduction, takes as its point of departure from that particularly American, particularly nasty sensibility which regards all countries, especially Latin-American ones, as adjuncts of their own property, and their people as second-class citizens who ought to be speaking English.' And as Russell Banks comments, It's when he's funny ... which he often is, that he's at his most dangerous.... He's a writer with a voice so sharp and personal that he changes your life while you're busy laughing at it.'


Leon Rooke was born at Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, 11 September 1934. He was educated at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill and was drafted into the US Army infantry for which he served in Alaska. An energetic and prolific storyteller, Rooke's writing is characterized by inventive language, experimental form, and an extreme range of offbeat characters with distinctive voices. He has written a number of plays for radio and stage, including the published works Krokodile (1973) and Sword/Play (1974), and has produced numerous collections of short stories, including Sing Me No Love Songs I'll Say You No Prayers: Selected Stories (1984). With John Metcalf he edited The New Press Anthology I (1984) and II (1985). It is his novels, however, which have received the most critical acclaim. Fat Woman (1980) was short-listed for the Governor General's Award, and Shakespeare's Dog won in 1983. Rooke currently lives in the Annex area of Toronto with his wife Constance, and continues his long-time role as artistic director of the Eden Mills Writers' Festival.


'This -- and every -- collection from Rooke reminds me of one of those omelets people make for themselves on Saturday mornings. Once folded and eased onto the plate, it's not necessarily the prettiest thing to look at, but it is full of good things, so full in fact that odd bits of onions, red pepper and ham squeeze out. That's the way it is with Rooke. He doesn't have the lightest touch, but he is generous. There is never a bland mouthful in his stories.' Canadian Book Review Annual 'Rooke's vision is Manichaean, melodramatic, exaggerated, and sometimes intentionally cartoonish. At its root, it is pure antithesis -- angels against devils. This formal opposition, though, is the engine of his furious style. Leon Rooke doesn't write like any of those precious minimalists or k-mart realists cluttering the literary marketplace these days. He is the high-priest of maximalist panache, the standard-bearer for a hyper-rhetoric that is at once strange, eccentric, and beautiful.' -- Douglas Glover Books in Canada
EAN: 9780889841253
ISBN: 088984125X
Untertitel: Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: August 1991
Seitenanzahl: 263 Seiten
Format: kartoniert
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