Publisher: Knopf Canada
ISBN: 978-0-307-39992-2 (0-307-39992-3)
Pub Date: August 9, 2011
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A love story like no other…
A World Elsewhere has all the hallmarks of Wayne Johnston's beloved, entertaining novels: humour and emotion in fine balance, larger-than-life characters, dreams of ambition that threaten to overpower their makers, the rich evocation of place and history - and here an unexpected, unforgettable relationship between a father and his adopted child that forms the beating heart of the story.
This sweeping tale immerses us in the life of St. John's, Princeton University and North Carolina at the close of the nineteenth century. Young Landish Druken is a formidable figure as he sets off from Newfoundland for the famed American university. Quick-witted, broader than most doorways, he is the only son of a notorious sealer who expects Landish to continue his legacy. But at Princeton, Landish is befriended, surprisingly, by "Van" Vanderluyden, son of the wealthiest man in America, and caught up in a life he had never imagined.
Expelled in disgrace, he returns to St. John's where, in an odd twist of fate, he adopts an infant boy. Outcast, fighting off destitution, he raises Deacon alone with no knowledge or tools other than trust, humour and compassion. But when poverty overwhelms them, they make the long journey to North Carolina to seek help from Landish's one-time friend. There, living in the greatest American castle of the Gilded Age, they are swiftly pulled into a web of lies, deceit and murder that threatens the bond between them.
A World Elsewhere is a beautiful, compelling novel that offers us new understanding of the meaning of love and loyalty, friendship and family.
From the Hardcover edition.
Praise for A World Elsewhere
#1 NATIONAL BESTSELLER
A Globe and Mail Best Book
LONGLISTED 2013 – IMPAC Dublin Literary Award
“Johnston’s facility for inventing characters we worry about, and one we even loathe, along with a gift for word play that’s at once witty and poignant make A World Elsewhere a world well worth inhabiting.”
“A World Elsewhere marks perhaps his greatest achievement in conveying the emotional state and psychology of tackling one’s past and culture.”
“Trust Annie Dillard’s judgment: Read it and revel in one of the funniest books that will move you to a deeper sense of the poignancy of human experience.”
—The Globe and Mail
“I’ve said many times that Canadian novelists are too obsessed with the past and ought to get with the urban present, but I’m fine if Wayne Johnston sticks to his period pieces. His fictionalized stories . . . are gripping portrayals of ambition.”
—NOW (Toronto) (Buy the Book feature)
Praise for Wayne Johnston
“His books are beautifully written, among the funniest I’ve ever read, yet somehow at the same time among the most poignant and moving.”
"A wondrous writer--of rich, irresistibly readable prose. He possesses a deft intelligence and a rare sense of what's truly interesting to tell about life."
"Why I love reading Wayne Johnston: The reader goes skittering through Wayne Johnston's novels, driven inexorably forward on the force of his characters, on the power of his wit.... Wayne's stories have characters who move in and take up permanent residence."
"A literary giant who has god-given talent."
WAYNE JOHNSTON was born and raised in the St. John's area of Newfoundland. His nationally bestselling novels include The Custodian of Paradise, The Navigator of New York and The Colony of Unrequited Dreams, which was an international bestseller and will be made into a film. Johnston is also the author of an award-winning and bestselling memoir, Baltimore's Mansion. He lives in Toronto.
From the Hardcover edition.
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