Blagrave_Mark_Lay-Figures
2022 Longlist

Lay Figures

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ABOUT
THE BOOK

Elizabeth MacKinnon moves to Saint John New Brunswick in 1939 to find inspiration for her poetry in the bohemian life of the city’s central peninsula. Swept up in the vibrant society of the city’s poets, painters, potters, dancers, and playwrights, she finds herself joining their struggles to make sense of making art in a time of economic depression.

Inhabiting the lives of the artists who find themselves in the port city taking refuge from the Depression, Lay Figures explores relationships between art and lived experience, artist and subject, artist and audience, and between margins and centre, and traces the development of a young female writer against the backdrop of the Depression and early war years in Saint John. In a story that couples bitter despair with exuberant triumphs, Elizabeth and her fellow artists make life-changing discoveries about politics and social responsibility, desire and betrayal.

 

ABOUT
THE AUTHOR Mark
Blagrave

Mark Blagrave’s short fiction has appeared in several Canadian literary journals and in a collection of interlinked stories entitled Salt in the Wounds (2014 ). His novel Silver Salts (2008) was shortlisted for the Commonwealth First Novel Award (Canada and Caribbean) and for the John and Margaret Savage Award for First Novel. Mark lives and writes in Saint Andrews, New Brunswick.

Mark Blagrave’s short fiction has appeared in several Canadian literary journals and in a collection of interlinked stories entitled Salt in the Wounds (2014 ). His novel Silver Salts (2008) was shortlisted for the Commonwealth First Novel Award (Canada and Caribbean) and for the John and Margaret Savage Award for First Novel. Mark lives and writes in Saint Andrews, New Brunswick.

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NOMINATING LIBRARY COMMENTS

Mark Blagrave’s sensory language creates an immersive authentic world in which he effectively balances the depiction of a burgeoning arts community, caught between two world wars, against explorations of the artistic process. Lay Figures is impeccably written with sharp dialogue, vivid descriptions, and a masterful use of metaphor and analogy. This is a compelling read, providing a “captivating commentary on art and creation, love, lust, and betrayal, social disparity and cultural history “. (Gemma Marr, Miramichi Reader) The questions and challenges faced by Blagrave’s artists are eternal, and more vital today than ever. (R.M. Vaughan).

Saint John Free Public Library, Canada

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Date published
01/10/2020
Country
Canada
Original Language
English
Author
Publisher
Nimbus Publishing

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