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TO SCATTER STONES

Dohaney, M.T.
Charlottetown (P.E.I.), Ragweed, 1992. 189pp, paper, $10.95, ISBN 0-921556-23-3. CIP


Grades 12 and up/Ages 17 and up

Reviewed by Sharon Anne McLennan McCue

Volume 20 Number 4
1992 September


This is Jean Dohaney's third book and it enough to make a reviewer want to search out the other two (The Corrigan Woman (Ragweed, 1988) and When Things Get Back t Normal (Pottersfield Press, 1979)). In To Scatter Stones Tessie Corrigan returns to Newfoundland after a rebound (on his part, not hers) marriage to an anal retentive lawyer in Montreal. The pain and emotional scars are still with her as she goes about her life in St. John's, but early in the book that changes As a result of the sort of "twist of fate" that novels run on (but so does life), Tessie becomes the Liberal candidate in the provincial election in the small outport where she grew up. While an earlier novelist claimed that you "can't go home again," Dohaney shows that you can but things are never quite the same. In returning home Tessie must face some of the reasons she left but, even more interestingly, she must face who she is.

Tessie Corrigan is a character that the reader will care about. She has all those insecurities that most of us share, along with a sizeable helping of common sense and an admirable measure of integrity. She is a woman of her times (1970s) who is only beginning to discover her capabilities. If her relationship with a friend/priest seems overdrawn, one must think back to how very different the world was twenty years ago.

This book should be added to every collection of Canadian fiction. Add it because it's a good book from a Canadian publisher, add it because it's a good read.


Sharon Anne McLennan McCue is a policy analyst on aboriginal issues with Solicitor General Canada in Ottawa, Ontario, and is a former library services consultant with the Cree School Board in Chisasibi, Quebec.

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