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June 30 , 2010

Sweetland: A Novel


The epic tale of an endangered Newfoundland community and the struggles of one man determined to resist its extinction.

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On an island of geniuses, a gang of kids must use their smarts to survive When five brilliant but wacky friends get dragged to a deserted island by their scientist parents, they decide to do what any self-respecting young brainiacs would: beat the adults at their own game. The only problem is, before the group…

The scarcely populated town of Sweetland clings to the shore of a remote Canadian island. Its slow decline has finally reached a head, with the mainland government offering each islander a generous resettlement package— the only stipulation being that everyone must leave. Fierce and enigmatic Moses Sweetland, whose ancestors founded the island, is determined to refuse. As one by one his neighbors relent, he recalls the town’s rugged history and its eccentric cast of characters. For fans of The Shipping News, Michael Crummey’s prose conjures up the mythical, sublime world of Sweetland’s past amid a storm-battered landscape haunted by local lore. In a spare style that belies “huge emotional depth and heart” (Celeste Ng, author of Everything I Never Told You), Crummey masterfully weaves together the past and present, creating in Sweetland a spectacular portrait of one man’s battle to survive as his world vanishes around him.

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