John Richardson (1796-1852) gained enduring fame for his extravagant frontier romance, "Wacousta," which was first published in 1832. "Wacousta" is a gothic tale that includes dishonour, revenge, passion, horror, and terror. At the same time it is a very Canadian novel by an author who describes himself as Canada's first native-born novelist. Borealis has published an authentic text complete with a wide range of critical commentary from current Canadian authorities.
555 pages, Paperback ISBN: 9781896133072 $19.95 CA
554 pages, Hardcover ISBN: 9781896133058 $39.95 CA
About the Book
John Richardson´s wondrously extravagant frontier romance, Wacousta, was first published in 1832. Since then it has been applauded, ignored, restored again to critical favour and celebrated as a national treasure. Yet it is a novel to be appreciated rather than revered. Too much solemnity might obscure the exuberant recklessness of the text, the blood-chilling bravado of the author´s achievement. The genius of Wacousta is that it invites all manner of critical speculation yet refuses to submit to any one construct or approach. Wacousta is not a meditation. It is a gothic tale of dishonour, revenge and enduring passion, of horror, terror and moral perversity, of weird sexuality and bizarre violence. For all of that, it is a profoundly Canadian novel, written by a man who, with only slight exaggeration, describes himself as our first native-born novelist, published years before Canada became a nation. In this volume, comprehensive biographical and bibliographical information is provided; and the pleasures of an authoritative text are reflected in the insights, enthusiasms and illuminating explications in a wide range of critical commentary by the following: Carl Ballstadt, David R. Beasley, A.C. Casselman, Douglas Daymond, Dennis Duffy, Carole Gerson, Michael Hurley, Manina Jones, Carl Klinck, Robert Lecker, Gaile McGregor, Leslie Monkman, John Moss, Margot Northerly, James Reaney, and William Riddell.