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Austin Clarke’s New Poetry Collection, WHERE THE SUN SHINES BEST, Reviewed in the Quill and Quire

wheresunshinesbestThe gifted and internationally successful author Austin Clarke‘s first work of poetry, Where the Sun Shines Best (Guernica 2013), has been reviewed by Quill and Quire!

Austin Clarke has published ten novels, six short story collections, and three memoirs in the United States, England, Canada, Australia, and Holland. Storm of Fortune, the second novel in his Toronto Trilogy about the lives of Barbadian immigrants, was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award in 1973. The Origin of Waves won the Rogers Communications Writers’ Development Trust Prize for Fiction in 1997. In 1999, his ninth novel, The Question, was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award. In 2003 he had a private audience with Queen Elisabeth in honour of his Commonwealth Prize for his tenth novel, The Polished Hoe. In 1998 he was invested with the Order of Canada, and he has received four honorary doctorates.

Where the Sun Shines Best (Guernica 2013) encompasses a tragedy of epic scope, a lyrical meditation on poverty, racism and war, and a powerful indictment of the ravages of imperialism. Three Canadian soldiers awaiting deployment to Afghanistan beat a homeless man to death on the steps of their armoury after a night of heavy drinking. The poet, whose downtown Toronto home overlooks the armoury and surrounding park, describes the crime, its perpetrators, the victim, and a cast of homeless witnesses that includes the woman, a prostitute, who first alerts police. The subsequent trial evokes reflection on the immigrant experience the poet shares with one of the accused, and on the agony of that young soldier’s mother.

The Quill and Quire writes:

Where the Sun Shines Best is a meditation on the terror that prevails when a city forgets the humanity of its forsaken denizens… Clarke’s intimate take on long-form narrative poetry gently eases readers into the emotionally fraught subject of a grievous homicide, which occurred in the author’s own downtown Toronto neighbourhood of Moss Park.

Where the Sun Shines Best succeeds as a testimony of a shared experience, sensitively binding a single moment of brutality to a global history of oppression.

To read the full review, click here.

Congratulations to Austin on this latest review, and don’t forget you can buy a copy of Where the Sun Shines Best on Guernica’s new website.

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