Titel: Seasoning Fever
Autor/en: Susan Kerslake
Mai 2002 - kartoniert - 314 Seiten
"Back Flip" is set in Toronto, in 1967. The title refers to a painting by a young artist, Eddie OaHara. When it is selected for a prestigious exhibition organized by a visiting English curator, it becomes the focus of a power struggle between Eddie and his dealer, the passionate and paranoid Bruno Gonzaga. After the painting mysteriously disappears, OaHara makes a copy and complications quickly ensue, raising questions of authenticity and ownership.
Much of the action derives from the competing delusions and deceits of the group of artists, dealers, critics and collectors who surround OaHara and Gonzaga. A social comedy of errors and a study of wishful thinking, "Back Flip" ends with a flash-forward to the year 2000 that brings readers up to date with its charactersa subsequent lives and, in some cases, deaths.
Born in Chicago, Susan Kerslake has lived in Halifax since 1966. Her previous books include Middlewatch (Oberon 1976), Penumbra (Mercury 1984), Blind Date (Potterfield 1989) and Book of Fears (Ragweed 1984) which was short-listed for the Governor General's Award. For over twenty years she has worked as a volunteer with children with cystic fibrosis. Seasoning Fever is her first novel in twelve years.
'Kerslake's novel is first-class literary fiction, polished and poetic, evocative of time and place, resplendent with imagery, and populated with cleverly drawn characters that are revealing of the human condition. Seasoning Fever is a book to be read and reread for the pleasure of its language, the subtlety of its story, and the universality of its insights.' -- Wayne Cunningham Canadian Book Review Annual 'No doubt Susan Kerslake will be fielding endless questions as to why it took 12 years to write Seasoning Fever, her third novel: She might do worse than to quote Margaret Laurence, who once remarked that writing a novel isn't the same kind of process as making a cup of instant coffee. Especially when the result is a novel as magnificent as Seasoning Fever, the account of a young couple's first three years of homesteading in the American Midwest, shortly after the Civil War. Though to call it an "account" is like describing an orgasm as "something like a sneeze," as sex manuals of a former era were apt to do.'Kerslake's novel is a feast of sensuous imagination, a vivid exploration not just of late 19th-century pioneering (though we learn of the varied and fascinating procedures involved in that daunting task), but also of human ambition, dream and desire. Her evocations of the way the body and mind live through such fundamental, if flyblown, experiences as marriage and maternity are nothing short of miraculous, and this is partly due to her poet's gift for precise and surprising images, and her passion for language. A girl's voice is described as being "white and thin, poised in the air like the tail of an antelope." Memory, or the process of looking backward into the mind, becomes "that pure place furnished by the structural logic of desire."Seasoning Fever is not a lullaby or a post-colonial primer, but a novel that enchants, alarms, vexes and perplexes, reminding us of Andre Gide's axiom: "Great works do not so much teach us as they plunge us into a sort of almost loving bewilderment." But it elucidates, as well, enlarging and enlivening our awareness of ourselves, our world and the immense range of our possibilities, both for fevers and calms, creation and damage. This is a work of rare beauty and terror and joy: a work well worth any amount of waiting.' Globe & Mail ' ... this is a book that is lush with detail. Every page offers up a succession of vivid images and one exquisitely wrought phrase after another. Yet we never feel the author is showing off or allowing her mastery of language to get the better of her internal editor. As with all good fiction character remains at the core of Kerslake's novel, and beyond its ability to dazzle, the language of Seasoning Fever serves its primary function -- to evoke setting, to reach inside characters and bring them to life, to tell a story -- with rare fluency.' -- Ian Colford The Fiddlehead