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Distance

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Paperback published by McClelland & Stewart (McClelland & Stewart)

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About This Book
A Globe and Mail Notable Book of the Year


Sonny Aalto, a restless middle-aged businessman, has spent his life running away from those closest to him. When his estranged, larger-than-life father, Timo, becomes too sick to care for himself, Sonny reluctantly returns to his childhood home of Vancouver Island, where he learns his father is not only dying but wants to die on his own terms – with Sonny’s help. But before facing the gravity of what’s ahead, the two embark on a journey to Australia, in search of a woman from their past, and over the course of the next few months their adventures will reveal difficult truths about fathers and sons, about families, about how we live and how we die – and about the good and bad things that distance can sometimes provide. Wise and irreverent, deeply moving, at times comic, and with vivid settings ranging from the frozen banks of Ottawa’s Rideau Canal to the lushness of Vancouver Island, from the bustle of downtown Sydney to the sun-baked desolation of the Queensland outback, Distance is Jack Hodgins’s most rewarding novel to date.


From the Hardcover edition.
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A Globe and Mail Notable Book of the Year


Sonny Aalto, a restless middle-aged businessman, has spent his life running away from those closest to him. When his estranged, larger-than-life father, Timo, becomes too sick to care for himself, Sonny reluctantly returns to his childhood home of Vancouver Island, where he learns his father is not only dying but wants to die on his own terms – with Sonny’s help. But before facing the gravity of what’s ahead, the two embark on a journey to Australia, in search of a woman from their past, and over the course of the next few months their adventures will reveal difficult truths about fathers and sons, about families, about how we live and how we die – and about the good and bad things that distance can sometimes provide. Wise and irreverent, deeply moving, at times comic, and with vivid settings ranging from the frozen banks of Ottawa’s Rideau Canal to the lushness of Vancouver Island, from the bustle of downtown Sydney to the sun-baked desolation of the Queensland outback, Distance is Jack Hodgins’s most rewarding novel to date.


From the Hardcover edition.
Product Details
Paperback
Published: October 5, 2004
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Imprint: McClelland & Stewart
ISBN: 9780771041723
Other books byJack Hodgins
  • The Macken Charm

    The Macken Charm
    It is the summer of 1956, and although Rusty Macken is eager to leave rural Vancouver Island – and his family – for university, the events of Glory’s funeral will not make it easy. Over the course of a single day, the rambunctious Macken clan gathers at the site of the burned-down seaside hotel that was once the family base to mourn and remember the glamorous city girl who married the wildest Macken of all but never quite adapted to their country ways. By the time the sun comes up on the following day, Rusty may have participated in something of a miracle. At the very least, he will have been forced to confront the uneasy secrets of his own heart. Compassionate, hilarious, and wise, The Macken Charm brilliantly captures the joys, the frustrations, and the rich human drama of family life.

    Innocent Cities

    Innocent Cities
    Set in Victoria, B.C., in 1881, Innocent Cities brilliantly weaves together the lives and lies of an entire community. Logan Sumner is a young widower and architect who dreams of transforming the tiny port city of Victoria into one of the great cities of the world. When he’s not chiseling a record of his life onto his tombstone, Sumner awkwardly courts the daughter of James Horncastle, an inveterate gambler and the swaggering proprietor of The Great Blue Heron Hotel. Their lives – and those of the bizarre group of guests who frequent the hotel – are changed forever when a mysterious widow from Australia arrives in Victoria with startling revelations from her past. Rich with intrigue, warm humour, and a memorable cast of characters, Innocent Cities is a compelling tale from one of Canada’s finest writers.

    A Passion for Narrative

    A Passion for Narrative
    A Guide to Writing Fiction - Revised Edition
    This book is not intended to persuade you to take up writing novels or short stories – “It’s going to be a lot of work,” Jack Hodgins warns. Nor will it tell you how to market your stories. But it will take you through the problems facing any fiction writer and show you how some of the best writers in English have solved them. The chapters are clear and comprehensive: Finding Your Own Stories; One Good Sentence After Another – on the skills of writing well; Setting; Character – how to make your characters come alive; Plot; Structure – “The Architecture of Story”; Point of View and Voice; Metaphors, Symbols and Allusions; Revising – an all-important chapter that also deals with the impact of writing on a computer; The Story of a Story – where Jack Hodgins talks of his own experience with one of his most famous stories; and the final chapter, And Now What? – Creating Your Own Workshop, which builds on the fact that every chapter in the book contains writing exercises to help you work away at home at “the mysterious business of writing fiction.” As an award-winning novelist and short-story writer Jack Hodgins is uniquely qualified to preach what he practises. As a trained teacher, he has been giving creative lessons for thirty years, at high schools and universities and to writers’ summer schools. In recent years his creative writing courses at the University of Victoria have become discreetly famous. Now, anyone who buys this book can share in the experience of learning fiction-writing from a master. With its scores of examples of first-class writing this lively, truly fascinating book will almost certainly make you be atter writer; it is guaranteed to make you a better reader.

    Jack Hodgins

    Jack Hodgins
    Essays on His Works
    In this collection of essays, the achievements of Jack Hodgins are celebrated by contributors who include Ron Hatch, Linda Morra, Joel Martineau, Jeanne Delbaere, Tim Struthers, Elizabeth Galway, Duffy Roberts, Travis Mason, and Waldemar Zacharasiewicz. With commentary on Hodgins’s individual works, an extensive interview with him, and a critical introduction to the collection, this compilation provides a unique analysis and biography of a prolific Canadian writer.

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