- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: Knopf Canada; 1st Edition edition (Aug. 28 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0676971903
- ISBN-13: 978-0676971903
- Parcel Dimensions: 23.2 x 16.7 x 2.8 cm
- Shipping Weight: 717 g
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,356,714 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Summer Gone Hardcover – Aug 28 1999
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David Macfarlane's Summer Gone is the story of Bay Newling, overweight and divorced, and his almost-teenaged son, Caz, and the memories that persist through the generations. It is also the story of those incredibly ephemeral summers in Canadian cottage country, which arrive and disappear with the brilliance of a struck wooden match. Ontario is speckled with 250,000 lakes, and summer at the lakeside cottage or camp is as Canadian as mournful-sounding loons or maple syrup. But summers are not all canoes and clear waters--they are also a time of healthy bodies panting amid mirages of heat and light. With evocative language and elaborate time-play, Macfarlane draws out the passions hidden in this landscape and in Bay's heart: "through the blue heat, the slip of bangles, the open folds and the shadows of creased white cotton, his time was slipping out of him and into the unordered cold."
Bay Newling, an urban man of strong habits and emotions, is blinded by his own desire one brilliant summer day, and he and his son both pay the price of temptation and its aftermath. In the end, Summer Gone, which won the Chapters/Books in Canada First Novel Award, is a tragedy but one so exquisitely rendered, with an ending so startling, that, like a dive into icy water, it leaves the reader breathless. --Mark Frutkin
"I've just discovered The Danger Tree and am stunned. It is so good. About the best prose to ever come out of this country, for my money." -- Alice MunroSee all Product description
Top customer reviews
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1) Total lack of character development despite some plot lines spanning many years
2) Hard to like many of the characters. Bay, the main protagonist, isn't a guy I'd gravitate towards in real life
3) The fascination with smoking doesn't fit, despite the era. That the Reverend Tobias is a chain smoking, nature loving camp director makes no sense at all.
4) Way too much focus on death. There are other impactful events in people's lives. No need to "go all the way" so much.
5) The character Rig serves no purpose in the story, although I enjoyed that section of the book.
6) The reason (trying to avoid being the spoiler here) for Bay's divorce isn't developed well at all.
I finished this book in about three days so it wasn't awful but I guess I prefer my characters to be likeable. You aren't going to find them here.
However, it was a bit of a tough read - lots of thoughts within thoughts, and run-on sentences. Add to that a lot of jumping around between different time periods, and varioud narrators, and it made it a slow, challenging read.
But yet, I was still enthralled by the story and the details...
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