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1 Beaverton Literature- A to Z

No Great Mischief (Vintage International)

by

No Great Mischief (Vintage International) Cover

ISBN13: 9780375726651
ISBN10: 0375726659
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

Only 1 left in stock at $4.50!

 

Staff Pick

I regret coming so late to Alistair MacLeod, this guy can really write! His style and sentences are deceptively simple, and the book itself seems too small to contain all the heart he plows into it. He's been publishing for more than 30 years, but has only completed two short story collections and one novel. When you read MacLeod, you'll recognize why it takes him so long to finish a story ? they are all little pieces of perfection, no fat, no pretense, just elegant writing and human stories with wonderful characters. I hate sentimental schlock, and what continues to amaze me about MacLeod is his ability to tread so deftly on that sharp edge between the heartfelt and the sentimental, never falling into simpering abyss. If you like the kinds of stories Alice Munro, Eudora Welty, or Hemingway write, MacLeod is for you.
Recommended by Fidel, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Alistair MacLeod musters all of the skill and grace that have won him an international following to give us No Great Mischief, the story of a fiercely loyal family and the tradition that drives it.

Generations after their forebears went into exile, the MacDonalds still face seemingly unmitigated hardships and cruelties of life. Alexander, orphaned as a child by a horrific tragedy, has nevertheless gained some success in the world. Even his older brother, Calum, a nearly destitute alcoholic living on Toronto's skid row, has been scarred by another tragedy. But, like all his clansman, Alexander is sustained by a family history that seems to run through his veins. And through these lovingly recounted stories-wildly comic or heartbreakingly tragic-we discover the hope against hope upon which every family must sometimes rely.

Review:

"There are phrases in Seamus Heaney's poem 'The Seed Cutters' which partly express what MacLeod does with his Macdonalds: 'compose the frieze / With all of us there, our anonymities.' No Great Mischief is more complex than a frieze, but has that kind of starkness. MacLeod writes with such 'simple' lucidity as is achieved only by mighty efforts in, one suspects, the wee small hours. The book is pervaded by humour and colour, intensely vivid, and very, very moving." Angus Calder, The Independent

Review:

"This extraordinary novel, telling the story of the substantial branch of the MacDonald clan that settled on Cape Breton Island off Nova Scotia, offers every satisfaction except an ending as quietly mighty as what has gone before." Adam Mars-Jones, The Guardian

Review:

"One of the great undiscovered writers of our time." Michael Ondaatje

Synopsis:

This novel weaves together the story of a Scottish man who sets sail with his wife and 12 children for Cape Breton in 1779 and the tale of his descendant, who struggles with family loyalty 200 years later on the same bleak landscape.

Synopsis:

Alistair MacLeod musters all of the skill and grace that have won him an international following to give us No Great Mischief, the story of a fiercely loyal family and the tradition that drives it.

Generations after their forebears went into exile, the MacDonalds still face seemingly unmitigated hardships and cruelties of life. Alexander, orphaned as a child by a horrific tragedy, has nevertheless gained some success in the world. Even his older brother, Calum, a nearly destitute alcoholic living on Toronto's skid row, has been scarred by another tragedy. But, like all his clansman, Alexander is sustained by a family history that seems to run through his veins. And through these lovingly recounted stories-wildly comic or heartbreakingly tragic-we discover the hope against hope upon which every family must sometimes rely.

About the Author

Alistair MacLeod was born in North Battleford, Saskatchewan in 1936 and raised among an extended family in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. His early studies were at the Nova Scotia Teachers College, St. Francis Xavier, the University of New Brunswick, and Notre Dame, where he earned his Ph.D. In his early years, to finance his education he worked as a logger, a miner, and a fisherman. Dr. MacLeod is a professor of English at the University of Windsor, Ontario. He has also taught creative writing at the University of Indiana and the Banff Centre. He lives with his wife and six children in Ontario, and still spends his summers in Cape Breton, writing in a cliff-top cabin looking west towards Prince Edward Island.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

summerlovin22396, January 27, 2011 (view all comments by summerlovin22396)
This is a wonderful novel. Very poetic and wonderfully structured story. This novel is the perfect winter read.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
rainsy, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by rainsy)
An amazing book, I started to reread it a week after I had finished it. It touches all Canadians heritage with a UK/Scots/Irish background.
Old tales my grandma told me as a child came back, the book reafirmed my belief in heritage and ancestory. Shaking my family tree and seeing who comes out. We are all the same
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)
John Fowler, June 21, 2008 (view all comments by John Fowler)
If you think this novel is well written , then wait until you discover his short fiction. Two of his short stories, " The Boat". and " In the Fall" a stand as exemplars of the art . I once asked him how he could create such masterpieces, and he replied that he writes one sentence at a time, perfecting it before he progresses to the next. This could well account for his limited output, and certainly accounts for the breathtaking power of his voice. And as a postscript, Hemingway couldn't sharpen his pencils.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(6 of 12 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 3 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375726651
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
MacLeod, Alistair
Author:
MacLeod, Alistair
Publisher:
Vintage
Location:
New York
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Sagas
Subject:
Brothers
Subject:
Young men
Subject:
Scots
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
Uranium mines and mining.
Subject:
Cape Breton Island
Subject:
Bildungsromans
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage International (Paperback)
Series Volume:
ERDC/CRREL TR-00-10
Publication Date:
20010403
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
8.02x5.22x.72 in. .56 lbs.

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Related Subjects


Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

No Great Mischief (Vintage International) Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$4.50 In Stock
Product details 304 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9780375726651 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

I regret coming so late to Alistair MacLeod, this guy can really write! His style and sentences are deceptively simple, and the book itself seems too small to contain all the heart he plows into it. He's been publishing for more than 30 years, but has only completed two short story collections and one novel. When you read MacLeod, you'll recognize why it takes him so long to finish a story ? they are all little pieces of perfection, no fat, no pretense, just elegant writing and human stories with wonderful characters. I hate sentimental schlock, and what continues to amaze me about MacLeod is his ability to tread so deftly on that sharp edge between the heartfelt and the sentimental, never falling into simpering abyss. If you like the kinds of stories Alice Munro, Eudora Welty, or Hemingway write, MacLeod is for you.

"Review" by , "There are phrases in Seamus Heaney's poem 'The Seed Cutters' which partly express what MacLeod does with his Macdonalds: 'compose the frieze / With all of us there, our anonymities.' No Great Mischief is more complex than a frieze, but has that kind of starkness. MacLeod writes with such 'simple' lucidity as is achieved only by mighty efforts in, one suspects, the wee small hours. The book is pervaded by humour and colour, intensely vivid, and very, very moving."
"Review" by , "This extraordinary novel, telling the story of the substantial branch of the MacDonald clan that settled on Cape Breton Island off Nova Scotia, offers every satisfaction except an ending as quietly mighty as what has gone before."
"Review" by , "One of the great undiscovered writers of our time."
"Synopsis" by , This novel weaves together the story of a Scottish man who sets sail with his wife and 12 children for Cape Breton in 1779 and the tale of his descendant, who struggles with family loyalty 200 years later on the same bleak landscape.
"Synopsis" by , Alistair MacLeod musters all of the skill and grace that have won him an international following to give us No Great Mischief, the story of a fiercely loyal family and the tradition that drives it.

Generations after their forebears went into exile, the MacDonalds still face seemingly unmitigated hardships and cruelties of life. Alexander, orphaned as a child by a horrific tragedy, has nevertheless gained some success in the world. Even his older brother, Calum, a nearly destitute alcoholic living on Toronto's skid row, has been scarred by another tragedy. But, like all his clansman, Alexander is sustained by a family history that seems to run through his veins. And through these lovingly recounted stories-wildly comic or heartbreakingly tragic-we discover the hope against hope upon which every family must sometimes rely.

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