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The Bird Artist: A Novel

The Bird Artist: A Novel

Author(s): Howard Norman

Location(s): Newfoundland

Genre(s): Fiction, Historical

Era(s): 1911

The Bird Artist, Howard Norman’s spellbinding novel, is set in Newfoundland in 1911. Fabian Vas’s story, told with disarming simplicity and grace, takes place against a spare and profoundly beautiful landscape where the most powerful of emotions stand out starkly against naked rock, sea and sky. At age twenty, Fabian is working at the boat yard, taking a correspondence course in bird painting, and sleeping with Margaret Handle, a woman of great beauty, intelligence and waywardness – though his parents are determined to marry him to a distant relation he has never met. Then his father leaves on a long hunting expedition, his mother takes up with the lighthouse keeper, Botho August, and Fabian’s world loses most of its bearings. The Bird Artist reveals the fire at the heart of human interactions with a rare and enthralling directness.

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