The Colony of Unrequited Dreams is Newfoundland - that vast, haunting near-continent upon which the two lovers and adversaries of this novel pursue their ambitions. Joey Smallwood, sprung from almost Dickensian privation, is a scholarship boy at a private school, where his ready wit bests the formidably tart-tongued Sheilagh Fielding. Their dual fates become forever linked by an anonymous letter to a local paper critical of the school - a letter whose mysterious authorship will weigh heavily on their lives. Driven by socialist dreams and political desire, Smallwood will walk a railroad line the breadth of Newfoundland in a journey of astonishing power and beauty, to unionize the workers - and make his name. Fielding, now a popular newspaper columnist, provides - in her journalism, her diaries, and her bleakly hilarious "Condensed History of Newfoundland" - a satirical and eloquent counternarrative to Smallwood's story. As the decades pass and Smallwood's rise converges with Newfoundland's emerging autonomy, these two vexed characters must confront their own frailties and secrets - and their mutual (if doomed) love.
Original title: The Colony of Unrequited Dreams
Genre: Fiction→ General Fiction