Urquhart, Jane "The Stone Carvers" - 2001
A story about stone carvers, ranging from a German settlement in Canada in the mid 19th century to World War I and a monument in France the Candians built to honour their soldiers who lost their lives on European battlefields.
Another book club read that everybody liked. We loved the images, the way the author wrote, her voice, her way of describing everything from human beings and their various actions to the landscapes and the monument. There is just so much to the book. The life of artists, in this case stone carvers, war and its aftermath, emancipation of women, historical and psychological topics as well as religious ones, a well rounded, nice historical fiction.
We discussed this in our book club in February 2008.
From the back cover: "In 1867 Pater Archangel Gstir is sent by God to the Canadian wilds. Soon the backwoods are transformed into a parish and the settlers into a congregation, and Joseph Becker, a woodcarver, is brought together with his future wife. Decades later their grandchild Klara holds young Eamon O'Sullivan in thrall as he sits speechless in her kitchen, suffering her anger and stirring her desire. Yet just as he wins this war of love, his victory is lost to the Great War in Europe, and Klara is left alone. But when an architect plans an ambitious memorial to the Canadian dead in France, Klara must use her family skills - to carve, to create and to remember."
In the meantime, I also read "The Underpainter" which I did not like at all.