978-0-88982-279-5 / 224pp / $21.95
“We were once here” resonates through this collection of short stories set in the small town of Fernie high in the Rocky Mountains. The gossips, the busy bodies, the do-gooders, the miscreants, society high-born and low, they are all here: little Zarah, immigrant girl, Mr. Kenneth Trites Wood, potentate, Ivy Greenleaf, the Reverend’s wife, Andy, cheeky boy from Slavtown, Mrs. Arthur Young, tea table heroine. They live in the valley under the regard of the impassive Rockies. Snowy peaks for whom the fortunes and misfortunes of the town whether private or shared for good or bad are only echoes. Each echo a poignant vignette inspired by memories so that these stories are universal and yet redolent of Fernie as it was before it became a well known ski and resort town. In the tradition of fables, tales and yarns, elders are reminded of a time they can remember and youngsters see what a time gone by was like for those who called the valley home.
“This is a beautiful collection of tales: warm, beguiling in its humour, and heart-felt. It has the confident voice of an insider, a consummate storyteller, one who cares about these immigrant characters, and a time that has (only recently) disappeared. Each story seems to say: ‘Come, sit on this bench. I have a secret to tell you...’”
~Peter Oliva - Author of The City of Yes