Tags: historical fiction

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Deluded Your Sailors (Michelle Butler Hallett)

It seems curious that Canadian literature has suffered this book to live. About halfway through Michelle Butler Hallett’s novel Deluded Your Sailors, one of these titular sailors (in the early 1700s) inflates and deflates a passage of poetic description: On deck, Walters got jovial and told a story about calenture, a fever that struck in […]


Sad Peninsula (Mark Sampson)

“Yet how would death come now, if Japan surrendered tomorrow? Or the day after that? Was time not running out for death to slip into her stall and carry her away?” This is the worry of Meiko (her real, Korean name is Eun-young), a Korean “comfort woman” — one of the sex slaves of the […]

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Against the Day (Thomas Pynchon)

Reading a novel by Thomas Pynchon is like trying to piece together a giant puzzle, only you don’t know what the picture is supposed to be, and dump trucks keep stopping by to pour out more pieces. It’s great, if distressing, fun. In Against the Day, Pynchon’s first novel in nine years, he forecasts the […]