A stunningly ambitious and sweeping novel about the end of the Wild West, A Good Man is the gripping tale of women and men trying to find their places among the shifting forces of social order as it overtakes one of the world’s last great frontiers, by the award-winning author of The Last Crossing and The Englishman’s Boy.
Wesley Case, a former soldier and son of a lumber baron, seems unable to find his destiny or escape history. Unresolved anger lingers following the American Civil War; conflict with aboriginal peoples creates tension between the US and Canada; and even Case’s newfound love for the beautiful widow, Ada Tarr, inflames the jealousy of a quiet, but deeply disturbed, Michael Dunne—part paid thug, part psychopath. Case’s confession of love also forces a confession of another kind; the revelation of an incident in his military career that resulted in his split with his family, his finance, and the end of his life in the East. At the same time, simmering resentments, political and personal, explode in a spectacular confrontation between native peoples and the American government as well as a violent resolution of Dunne’s plan for revenge against Case as he ever more feverishly imagines himself a contender for Ada Tarr’s affections. The novel concludes with a scene of pastoral harmony—a metaphor for a new order and the final passing of the lawless individualism of the old West.
Praise for Guy Vanderhaeghe’s A Good Man:
Longlisted for the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize
“A Good Man isn’t simply a history lesson, it is also … an honest–to-goodness Western, complete with cowboys and Indians and gunfights and black-hatted villains. And it is sure to become, deservedly so, a classic.”—The Toronto Star
“The story unfolds with consistent charm and erudition. The complex and evolving relations between the Americans, Canadians, and various First Nations are well delineated … A Good Man is another well-wrought chapter in this multi-layered story.”—Quill and Quire
Genre/Category: Literary Fiction—Historical
Length: 400 pp
English (Canada) rights, McClelland & Stewart
English (US) rights, Grove Atlantic
French rights, Albin Michel
For all other rights contact The Cooke Agency.
Photo Credit: Margaret Vanderhaeghe
||Vanderhaeghe’s first book, Man Descending, was published in 1982 and won the Governor General’s Award and the Faber Prize in the UK. He went on to win the Governor General’s Award for a second time with his novel The Englishman’s Boy. He has been nominated for many major prizes in Canada and Europe. Guy Vanderhaeghe lives in Saskatoon.