The Custodian of Paradise: Book summary and reviews of The Custodian of Paradise by Wayne Johnston

The Custodian of Paradise

A Novel

By Wayne Johnston

The Custodian of Paradise
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  • Published in USA  Apr 2007,
    528 pages.

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Book Summary

In the waning days of World War II, Sheilagh Fielding makes her way to an island off the coast of Newfoundland, deserted except for some horses and a pack of wild dogs. But she comes to suspect another presence: that of a man known only as her Provider, who has shadowed her for twenty years, ever since she made a mysterious pilgrimage to her mother's home in New York City.

Against the backdrop of Newfoundland's history and landscape—so memorably evoked in Wayne Johnston's prose—Fielding is a compelling figure. Taller than most men and striking in spite of her crippled leg, she is both eloquent and subversively funny. Her newspaper columns exposing the foibles and hypocrisies of her native city, St. John's, have made many powerful enemies for her, chief among them the man who fathered her children—twins—when she was only fourteen. Only her Provider, however, knows all of Sheilagh Fielding's secrets.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"There's little tension over the 500-plus pages, and the denouement is overblown. But Fielding is a fascinating character: she courts her own estrangement as much as she is tormented by it." - PW.

"With humor and pathos, Johnston unravels the story in fascinating layers and a compelling tone, revealing how mistakes, betrayal, and revenge can plague people's entire lives." - Library Journal.

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Author Information

Wayne Johnston Author Biography

waynejohnston.ca

Wayne Johnston was born and raised in Goulds, Newfoundland. After a brief stint in pre-Med, Wayne obtained a BA in English from Memorial University. He worked as a reporter for the St. John's Daily News before deciding to devote himself full-time to writing.

Johnston is the author of seven novels and one memoir. En route to being published, Johnston earned an MA (Creative Writing) from the University of New Brunswick. His first book, The Story of Bobby O'Malley, won the WH Smith/Books in Canada First Novel award for the best first novel published in the English language in Canada in that year. The Divine Ryans was adapted to the silver screen in a production starring Academy Award winner Pete Postlethwaite using Johnston’s screenplay. Baltimore's Mansion, a memoir dealing with his ...

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