Saturday, May 11, 2013
The Tinsmith by Tim Bowling
Intrigue is introduced in the person of a young man dressed in an ill-fitting Yankee uniform. John spends many hours carrying wounded men to medical assistance. He is an escaped slave with very light skin, hiding in plain sight, and Anson helps him out.
John's backstory is revealed slowly over through the course of the novel. Twenty years after the war, he is operating a salmon canning factory on the banks of the Fraser River in British Columbia. When trouble comes calling in the form of unscrupulous businessmen, John asks his old friend Anson for help once again.
Bowling is a master wordsmith. With its memorable characters, vivid settings and somber plot, I know the The Tinsmith will haunt me. It is currently one of the five finalists for the Alberta Readers' Choice Awards.