Hero Reading

Many thanks to the Shorefast Foundation and the Fogo Island Inn for organizing and hosting Saturday night’s reading from my novel, Hero, originally published by Vagrant Press (Nimbus) in 2009 but current once more.

About Hero:
When Lieutenant Simon Jenson returns from the war in 1918, his wife Sarah finds him emotionally fragile and prone to violent rages. Not even their young daughter Lucy can cheer him. Worse, their lives are soon overtaken by the shadow of blackmail. Sarah and Elsa, Lucy’s governess, are forced to reconsider everything they once believed about loyalty, valour, and responsibility. “[A] brilliant new novel. Butler uses imaginative, textured language to convey the emotional contradictions of his characters.”  Atlantic Books Today.

Fogo Island Inn


The reading in Fogo Island Inn’s cinema


This has been a wonderful time on Fogo Island. The setting — the island is surrounded by icebergs at this time of year — is spectacular, and the people have been universally kind and friendly.

I was also delighted to be part of an event on May 28 to protest the unconscionable decision by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador to close Fogo Island’s only public library, along with 53 other rural libraries around the province. So much damage to people’s lives for so little in terms of financial savings. Sad and completely unnecessary.


Cupids, NaGeira, and Easton, by Paul Butler

This is a thoughtful and interesting review of three of my books — Easton, NaGeira and Cupids — by acclaimed writer Trudy Morgan Cole, author of (among other fine works) The Violent Friendship Of Esther Johnson (the friendship is with Jonathan Swift).

Compulsive Overreader

butlerbooksThese are three separate books, not a series or anything (in fact, they can’t really take place in the same fictional universe, since the events of Sheila Na’Geira’s life as narrated in Easton seem to contradict what happens in NaGeira, so they are clearly distinct stories). But I read them all in fairly quick succession over the last couple of weeks, which is why I’m reviewing them together. They are all set in the early 1600s, focusing on historical and/or legendary characters who have cast long shadows over Newfoundland’s early history — the colonizer John Guy, the pirate Peter Easton, and the Irish “princess” Sheila Na’Geira. Butler’s writing is vivid, fluent, and filled with wonderful period detail, bringing these historical names and legends to life in a series of revealing snapshots.

I say “snapshot” because each of these is a short book, dealing with only a narrow slice in…

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