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As Birds Bring Forth the Sun and Other Stories
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As Birds Bring Forth the Sun and Other Stories

4.41 of 5 stars 4.41  ·  rating details  ·  116 ratings  ·  6 reviews
The superbly crafted stories collected in Alistair MacLeod’s As Birds Bring Forth the Sun and Other Stories depict men and women acting out their “own peculiar mortality” against the haunting landscape of Cape Breton Island. In a voice at once elegiac and life-affirming, MacLeod describes a vital present inhabited by the unquiet spirits of a Highland past, invoking memory ...more
Paperback, 176 pages
Published June 1st 1992 by New Canadian Library (first published 1986)
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A delightful collection of crisp charged stories about Canadian Scots living in the beautiful, rough farming/fishing/logging/mining (heck, just about any type of work that demanded hard labor and danger) of the Cape Breton area of Nova Scotia. Well written, almost memoirish, with a fondness that infuses the stories, seemingly holding up the mostly male characters as admirable, honest, hard working, hard suffering, proud people. Description of life and land are wonderful. The stories sometime mea ...more
This was a fantastic collection of short stories, that pulled me in from the start, and had me wanting to read it through in a sitting.

The first short story in this collection, The Closing Down of Summer, completely gripped me and pulled me in. In fact, most of the stories in this story had me engrossed into the collection of stories. There were many times, where I was completely lost in the stories.

The writing alone was good enough to make this collection be a great one, combined with some ex
Loved this book of short stories, although I'm not usually a big short story person. The characters came immediately to life and the pictures of life on the east coast were vivid. The stories are very real life, often leading from one story and ending in another, and often involving very difficult lives, both for the people and for the animals that appear frequently. But even though their lives were tough and sometimes filled with tragedy, I didn't find the book to be depressing. Definitely wort ...more
Sep 17, 2008 Smcalli1 rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone
In my mind, Alistair MacLeod is one of today's best writers. He doesn't try to grab you with flashy techniques or weird storyline twists or profound social comment. Rather, he's a storyteller, pure and simple. This is a collection of some of his rare short stories that chronicle the lives of people in his native Nova Scotia. They are beautifully crafted and moving in their simplicity. If you enjoy a quiet, yet moving story, well told, I recommend anything written by Alistair MacLeod.
I generally much prefer novels to short stories but these were beautifully written, and somewhat haunting. Set against the landscape of Cape Breton the characters’ memories of life, change, loss, and the passing of generations are deeply poignant.
My book rating: 9 stars
Magnus Flyte
Stunningly beautiful writing. Do yourself a favor and read this book. Slowly, while no one is bothering you. Savor every word. It's not very long, but it's very, very good.
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When MacLeod was ten his family moved to a farm in Dunvegan, Inverness County on Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Island. After completing high school, MacLeod attended teacher's college in Truro and then taught school. He studied at St. Francis Xavier University between 1957 and 1960 and graduated with a BA and B.Ed. He then went on to receive his MA in 1961 from the University of New Brunswick and his ...more
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