Chris Faiers Reviews The Alphabet Stones in Riffs and Ripples from Zen River Gardens

People’s Poet, Purdyfest founder and retired librarian Chris Faiers has posted a wonderful review of The Alphabet Stones over at his popular poetry blog, Riffs and Ripples from Zen River Gardens. Chris has been a featured reader at Cat Sass Literary Nights. His latest book, (from HBP) Eel Pie Island Dharma, is a reprint of his seminal work about a famous 60’s commune in England.

Chris writes:

Clear room on your bookshelves for The Alphabet Stones. This book is a keeper – it better be a contender for the Governor General’s Award, the Giller,  Canada Reads – all of Canada’s major literary awards – it’s that damn good!

Make room between Jane Urquhart’s amazing novel, Away –  pioneer life amid haunting forest mysteries on the edge of the Canadian Shield, and Miriam Toews’ coming-of-age novel, A Complicated Kindness –  growing up in a dysfunctional Mennonite community.

Acclaimed area author Ursula Pflug’s novel parallels much of the territory of both these two pillars of Canadian literature, and much, much more. Pflug makes us understand and appreciate the abandoned homesteads, fields and forests of eastern Ontario where powerful local spirits prevail, which most humans fleetingly occupy with unseeing eyes. Special people, seers, young women open to all possibilities with shamanistic awareness, these are the finders of the gates to a truer and deeper awareness in all these novels. The prose in Stones is poetic, perhaps even more evocative and haunting than Urquhart’s masterpiece of mental illness and Toews understanding of the incredible coping mechanisms a teenager much learn to survive among dysfunctional adults ruling a bizzaro fundamentalist world.


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