Today I welcome Sandy Day to the blog to talk books.
Sandy is the Canadian author of Fred’s Funeral. She graduated from Glendon College, York University, with a degree in English Literature sometime in the last century. Sandy is a trained facilitator for the Toronto Writers Collective’s creative writing workshops. She is a developmental editor and book coach.
- What’s the first book you remember reading?
My mom read many books to me by but the first book I remember carrying around and reading was Anne of Green Gables. I was in Grade 5, so I was about Anne’s age in the book. I loved it.
- What book will always stay with you and why?
Watership Down. I read it the summer I was fifteen – lying in the hammock under the cedar trees at the cottage. My world filled up with rabbits and their troubles. I’ll never forget the pleasure of reading that book.
- One book you are looking forward to reading?
Closer to Where We Began by Lisa Richter is a beautiful book of poetry. I bought it last summer when it was published and I read the first poem and had to put it down because the inspiration that surged through me was overwhelming. I am looking forward to being transported by this book now that I have some time to savour it and write in response.
Fred Sadler has just died of old age. It’s 1986, seventy years after he marched off to WWI, and the ghost of Fred Sadler hovers near the ceiling of the nursing home. To Fred’s dismay, the arrangement of his funeral falls to his prudish sister-in-law, Viola. As she dominates the remembrance of Fred, he agonizes over his inability to set the record straight.
Was old Uncle Fred really suffering from shell shock? Why was he locked up most of his life in the Whitby Hospital for the Insane? Could his family not have done more for him?
Fred’s memories of his life as a child, his family’s hotel, the War, and the mental hospital, clash with Viola’s version of events as the family gathers on a rainy October night to pay their respects.