JFK referred to history as a “relentless master,” while Percy Shelley wrote, “History is a cyclic poem written by time upon the memories of man.” Both aspects are apparent in three celebrated new novels that examine the tidal effects of history on the lives of individuals.
Don Gillmor’s new novel, Long Change, examines the world of oil through the life and loves of one man. Spanning almost seventy years, and following the geology and politics of oil from Texas to the Canadian oil patch, to Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, Azerbaijan, various political capitals, and the Arctic, Long Change is divided into three parts, each of them framed by one of Ritt’s marriages.
Tracey Lindberg’s debut novel, Birdie, is a darkly comic and moving first novel about the universal experience of recovering from wounds of the past, informed by the lore and knowledge of Cree traditions. Part road trip, part dream quest and part travelogue, the novel touches on the universality of women’s experience, regardless of culture or race.
Based closely on real events, The Gold Eaters draws on Ronald Wright’s deep knowledge of South America to bring alive an epic struggle that laid the foundations of the modern world. It is a sweeping, epic historical novel of exploration and invasion, of conquest and resistance, and of an enduring love that must overcome the destruction of one empire by another.