Harriet Richards
   
 

Harriet Richards’ creative reality was as a visual artist until an obstinate painting insisted on becoming a short story. She has since published three books of fiction: The Lavender Child was nominated for the Fiction Award and won First Book Award, Saskatchewan Book Awards 1998; Waiting for the Piano Tuner to Die was nominated for Book of the Year in 2003; and, The Pious Robber in 2012 was winner of the 2013 Saskatchewan Book Award for Fiction. Her fiction has been featured on CBC Radio, and published in literary journals in Canada and Wales. She lives in Saskatoon.

 

  


Books


 

SHORT FICTION
160 pages / paper

Available in the US
World Rights Available

REVIEWS


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ISBN: 978-1-927068-18-2
List Price: $18.95

Harriet Richards

Few writers have Harriet Richards’ understanding of childhood, and fewer still can evoke the never-lost child at the heart of our adult experience. Like her previous, critically-acclaimed books, this new collection is deft, comic, and poignant, but there is malice and tragedy at work in these stories — their gaiety and cool observation counterbalance the troubled lives they explore.

In the brilliantly imagined title story two young girls become guardian angels to an emaciated drifter with a very dark secret. Their innocence is an armour against the danger that simmers, below adult knowledge, around a northern lake. Innocence, both tough and vulnerable, is at play in many of these stories: Ava, in “A Great Wrong” carries the guilt of a childhood betrayal and revenge; Olivia’s role as confidante, in “Bagatelle”, channels the absurdities and fragility of clumsy, hopeful lives. “In the Direction of the Three Sisters” is a sad, ironic protest at life’s unfairness.

Trust is the most perilous adventure in Richards’ stories, but every one of her characters takes that risk. Their candour in the face of what follows is the book’s enduring delight.

  • Winner of the 2013 Saskatchewan Book Award for Fiction
  • Shortlisted for Book of the Year, 2013 Saskatchewan Book Awards

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short fiction

180 pages/trade paper

Available in the US
World Rights Available

REVIEWS

ISBN: 978-1-894345-50-7
List Price: $14.95

Harriet Richards

Harriet Richards' almost uncanny gift for inhabiting the minds and personalities of widely different characters is as evident in this collection as in her award-winning first novel, The Lavender Child.

The men and women in these stories, and perhaps most of all the children, make their own sense of a world where "There are forces at play so simple, natural, and accidental that nobody can figure them out and see them coming." It is a world, too, in which "there's lots more sorrow flying around people's heads than there is joy." That sorrow may be heartbreaking, occasionally it is horrific; but the reader is constantly reminded, with the quiet, clear-eyed and sometimes mischievous irony of Harriet Richards' voice, that in this world and — in the least likely places — we may entertain angels unawares.

  • Shortlisted for Book of the Year, 2003 Saskatchewan Book Awards

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NOVEL

230 pages/trade paper

Available in the US
World Rights Available

reviews

ISBN: 978-1-895449-72-3
List Price: $10.95

Harriet Richards

 

A year in the lives, dreams and awakenings of the Protheroe family. Baby Dion is brain-damaged at birth, yet he is a sweet and powerful influence on his parents, his five sisters and his grandparents. Under his spell, the reader travels through the minds of three generations: a group of wonderfully individual people who nevertheless define family in a wholly original and exciting way.

This novel provides an intimate connection to the study of family values and responsibilities. Senior students will be riveted.

The Lavender Child reminds me of the best of Anne Tyler and Barbara Kingsolver, confident, witty, tender and smart . . "An auspicious debut, sassy, clear-eyed and beautifully told.” – Sandra Birdsell

  • Winner of the 1998 Saskatchewan Book Award for Best First Book

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