NCL 62 – The Lamp at Noon and Other Stories by Sinclair Ross


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The Lamp at Noon and Other Stories by Sinclair Ross (New Canadian Library N62) front coverSeries One

From the Back Cover:

On isolated prairie farms, in extremes of summer drought and winter blizzard, men and women grapple with their fate against almost impossible odds. It is a fate partly imposed by a fickle and uncaring nature, and partly by their spiritual inheritance–a legacy of pride and determination which enables them to refuse defeat, but which also cuts them off nearly all real contact with others, even those closest and dearest to them. The tragedy of these people is no that they suffer, but they suffer alone.

Within this framework lies a remarkably imaginative range of content–a woman’s impulsive infidelity leads to bleakly tragic results; a sudden hailstorm destroys hope; a boy learns to conquer a wild, beautiful horse, a little girl dreams about a circus; birth, death, and growth are each in turn chronicled.

In these stories, Sinclair Ross shows the insight and compassion which made As for Me and My House such a memorable novel, and proves once more that a chronicler of the prairies in the dustbowl Thirties he stands in a class by himself.


The Lamp at Noon and Other Stories by Sinclair Ross (New Canadian Library N62) front coverSeries Two

From the Back Cover:

On isolated prairie farms, in extremes of summer drought and winter blizzard, men and women grapple with their fate against almost impossible odds. It is a fate partly imposed by a fickle and uncaring nature, and partly by their spiritual inheritance–a legacy of pride and determination which enables them to refuse defeat, but which also cuts them off nearly all real contact with others, even those closest and dearest to them. The tragedy of these people is no that they suffer, but they suffer alone.

Within this framework lies a remarkably imaginative range of content–a woman’s impulsive infidelity leads to bleakly tragic results; a sudden hailstorm destroys hope; a boy learns to conquer a wild, beautiful horse, a little girl dreams about a circus; birth, death, and growth are each in turn chronicled.

In these stories, Sinclair Ross shows the insight and compassion which made As for Me and My House such a memorable novel, and proves once more that a chronicler of the prairies in the dustbowl Thirties he stands in a class by himself.


The Lamp at Noon by Sinclair Ross (New Canadian Library) front coverSeries Four

From the Back Cover:

Sinclair Ross’s 1941 novel As For Me and My House is a masterpiece of Canadian literature, a stunning evocation of the Prairies and their inhabitants during the Depression of the Thirties. With THE LAMP AT NOON AND OTHER STORIES, an original New Canadian Library collection, Ross reveals further dimensions of his fictional universe.

A woman’s impulsive infidelity leads to tragedy. A sudden hailstorm destroys hope. A boy learns to conquer a beautiful wild horse. A little girl dreams about a circus. Against  the isolated, haunting landscapes of summer droughts and winter blizzards, the men and women of Ross’s stories grapple with fate against almost impossible odds. Marked by a legacy of pride that will not suffer defeat, Ross’s unyielding characters are cut off from their loved ones by obstinacy and defiance. Their tragedy is not that they suffer, but that they suffer alone.

The sensitivity, compassion and subtlety with which Ross portrays human aspirations and failings remain to this day unequalled in Canadian fiction.

Ross’s style is always beautifully matched to his material – spare, lean, honest, no gimmicks, and yet in its very simplicity setting up continuing echoes in the mind.” – Margaret Laurence


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