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Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town is one of Canadas classic works of literature, and perhaps its most complex work of satire. A series of linked stories chronicling life in the fictional community of Mariposa--modelled on Orillia, Ontario--Sunshine Sketches gently mocks Canadian small-town life in a manner that is as dead-on as it is humourous. Whether describing the sinking of the towns ship, the Mariposa Belle, in a few feet of water in "The Marine Excursion of the Knights of Pythias" or giving an account of an old-fashioned courting that ends disastrously in "The Foreordained Attachment of Zena Pepperleigh and Peter Pupkin," Leacock's ridiculously earnest narrator presents a community torn between a desire for modernity and a nostalgia for a simpler past. The result is an absurd romp through both our social and literary values.
But Sunshine Sketches is also a highly political book, one that demonstrates Leacock's background as an economist and embodies many social and cultural anxieties still felt in Canada today. The stories reveal an unease about everything from the excesses of capitalism to Canada's identity, and a dark note of pessimism underlies much of the book's humour. While the narrator of Sunshine Sketches is unconcerned about the future of his community, Leacock was clearly worried about the direction Canadian society was taking, and at times the book seems eerily prophetic of today's globalized, American-dominated Canada. Above all, Sunshine Sketches is a damn good read. It's one of those rare books that manage to seamlessly combine social criticism with good storytelling. Like the town of Mariposa itself, Sunshine Sketches is timeless. --Peter Darbyshire --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Although we have long celebrated Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town as a Canadian classic, we have had to wait until now for an edition that would put the best possible version of the text into our hands. It is wonderful to have that at last. The additional framing this edition gives Leacock's great work is invaluable. This new edition of Leacock's pastoral comedy should provoke new critical consideration of a literary work that is far more complex and richer than we have so far noticed." (Russell Brown, co-editor of The Oxford Anthology of Canadian Literature)
"Carl Spadoni's edition of Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town is a delight to peruse. As a critical edition it brings to twentieth-century textual study what the CEECT series accomplished for nineteenth-century Canadian books. Beyond that, Spadoni provides new information and revelations throughout his introduction, enriching our sense of the complex place that Mariposa held in Stephen Leacock's imagination and the welter of critical response that his apparently innocent book has engendered. It's an important work, worth at least a year of shaves and haircuts in Jeff Thorpe's memorable barber shop." (Michael Peterman)
"Spadoni's edition deserves a welcome place on the shelves of Canadian literature specialists and general readers alike." (Canadian Literature) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Excellent book. The author really captivates the reader. At first it seems like he over describes everything (which he does), but it all comes to use as you read along.Published 19 months ago by felipe
in very good condition, i would say it is new and it is very thin and cute. needed for a class, so not going to comment for the content..Published 24 months ago by Sui HaoNan
Leacock was a master of understatement in Canadian humour. He delights in poking fun at the hypocrits wether they be politicians, clergy or townspeople. Read morePublished on Oct. 23 2011 by Alan Rivers
no hype. i couldn't stop laughing as i was reading this. and i mean laughing out loud. in a cafe. with everyone staring at me. but i didn't care. and i couldn't help it if i did. Read morePublished on June 21 2003
Like the heading says, this is the funniest book I've ever read. Leacock was a comic genius and this is his best work. Buy it, read it, love it.Published on Dec 3 2002