NCL 59 – The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence


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The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence (New Canadian Library N59) front coverSeries One

From the Back Cover:

In this tough and poignant novel, Margaret Laurence brings us the uncompromising story of Hagar Shipley–as seen through Hagar’s own eyes at the age of ninety. Her reflections on her past emerge as a series of vigorously etched portraits: life as a young girl in the bleak prairie town; marriage to a virile but negligent farmer; the relationship with her two sons–the conventional Marvin, and the flamboyant John whom she eventually destroys; middle-age and widowhood, and finally the old woman, querulous, short-tempered, still armoured by her steely humour–still isolated by her life-long habits of pride and self-reliance.

Hagar is a remarkable character–her stern virtues the strength of the pioneer society in which she was raised. And through the insight and clarity of Margaret Laurence’s writing she also emerges as a wholly believable, curiously lovable human being–defeated by her obstinacy–her resistance to giving and accepting love, but to the end, undefeated by life.


The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence (New Canadian Library N59)

Series Two

From the Back Cover:

In this tough and poignant novel, Margaret Laurence brings us the uncompromising story of Hagar Shipley–as seen through Hagar’s own eyes at the age of ninety. Her reflections on her past emerge as a series of vigorously etched portraits: life as a young girl in the bleak prairie town; marriage to a virile but negligent farmer; the relationship with her two sons–the conventional Marvin, and the flamboyant John whom she eventually destroys; middle-age and widowhood, and finally the old woman, querulous, short-tempered, still armoured by her steely humour–still isolated by her life-long habits of pride and self-reliance.

Hagar is a remarkable character–her stern virtues the strength of the pioneer society in which she was raised. And through the insight and clarity of Margaret Laurence’s writing she also emerges as a wholly believable, curiously lovable human being–defeated by her obstinacy–her resistance to giving and accepting love, but to the end, undefeated by life.


The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence (New Canadian Library N59)Series Three

From the Back Cover:

The celebrated novel that firmly established Margaret Laurence as on of Canada’s most important authors.

Since the days when her father taught her to shout the motto of the family clan–“Gainsay Who Dare!”–Hagar Shipley faced life with an obstinate, uncompromising pride. Pride sustains her during a stormy marriage, and gives her strength when, at the age of ninety, she is faced with the prospect of entering a nursing home. Refusing to accept such a future, Hagar plans to run away. All that she has is her old-age pension cheque and the name of a place by the sea. But her pride gives her the determination to begin a journey that will eventually lead her to freedom.

The freedom Hagar requires, though, has little to do with the deserted cannery where she eventually finds herself. Although her pride has supported her in the past, it has also estranged her from her husband and lost her a favourite son. Only when she confronts her scars can Hagar emerge, undefeated, from her memories and from her own painful mortality…With sympathy and insight, Laurence presents a portrait of a remarkable woman and her life-long journey towards self-understanding.


The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence (New Canadian Library) front coverSeries Four

From the Back Cover:

In Hagar Shipley, Margaret Laurence has created one of the boldest most memorable characters in Canadian fiction.

Raised according to the stern virtues of her pioneer ancestors, Hagar Shipley leads a life of uncompromising pride – a pride which sustained her during a stormy marriage, but which lost her a favourite son. As her story unfolds we are given vividly etched descriptions of Hagar as a young girl in a remote prairie town; of her now estranged husband; of John, her outgoing son; and Marvin, the son she never loved. And now, with her life nearly behind her, Hagar makes a bold, last step towards freedom and independence, and in the process gains a deeper understanding of the meaning of acceptance.

In THE STONE ANGEL, Margaret Laurence has given us a portrait of a remarkable woman and her life-long journey towards self-understanding.

“One of the most convincing – and the most touching – portraits of an unregenerate sinner.” – Time

“A densely imagined, ingeniously constructed and finely mature work of fiction.” – Toronto Daily Star


The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence (New Canadian Library) front coverSeries Five

From the Back Cover:

In Hagar Shipley, Margaret Laurence has created one of the boldest most memorable characters in Canadian fiction.

Raised according to the stern virtues of her pioneer ancestors, Hagar Shipley leads a life of uncompromising pride – a pride which sustained her during a stormy marriage, but which lost her a favourite son. As her story unfolds we are given vividly etched descriptions of Hagar as a young girl in a remote prairie town; of her now estranged husband; of John, her outgoing son; and Marvin, the son she never loved. And now, with her life nearly behind her, Hagar makes a bold, last step towards freedom and independence, and in the process gains a deeper understanding of the meaning of acceptance.

In The Stone Angel, Margaret Laurence has given us a portrait of a remarkable woman and her life-long journey towards self-understanding.


The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence (New Canadian Library) front coverSeries Six

From the Back Cover:

In Hagar Shipley, Margaret Laurence has created one of the boldest most memorable characters in Canadian fiction.

Raised according to the stern virtues of her pioneer ancestors, Hagar Shipley leads a life of uncompromising pride – a pride which sustained her during a stormy marriage, but which lost her a favourite son. As her story unfolds we are given vividly etched descriptions of Hagar as a young girl in a remote prairie town; of her now estranged husband; of John, her outgoing son; and Marvin, the son she never loved. And now, with her life nearly behind her, Hagar makes a bold, last step towards freedom and independence, and in the process gains a deeper understanding of the meaning of acceptance.


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