Sealskin

Sealskin
A search and rescue volunteer looks for a missing snowboarder on Christmas Eve. Two brothers retreat to the woods to shoot a film in memory of their dead friend. A reclusive forestry worker picks up a hitchhiker on his way down Mount Seymour. A young man finds a temporary haven on the ice barge where he works. In this collection of award-winning stories, Tyler Keevil uses the rugged landscape of Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet—where the city meets the mountains and civilization meets the wild—as a backdrop for characters struggling against the elements, each other and themselves.
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Winner of the Writers’ Trust of Canada / McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize

Winner of the Cinnamon Press Short Story Prize

Winner of the Frome Festival International Short Story Competition

Winner of an Independent Publisher Book Award

Longlisted for The Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award

 

“‘Sealskin’ is a stunner: straightforward and unadorned, but humming with subsurface power…. Keevil has accomplished something rare: a story about rough masculinity that brims with emotion and pathos.”

Writers’ Trust of Canada Journey Prize judges 2014

 

“I haven’t been as excited about reading a new writer since I read DBC Pierre’s Vernon God Little.”

Jasper Rees, Wales Book of the Year judge

 

“Storytelling rich in symbolism; subtle plot devices; and an ending that opens and sings.”

New Welsh Review

Details
Author:
Publisher: Locarno Press
Publication Year: 2018
ASIN: 1988996015
ISBN: 9781988996011
List Price: $16.95 USD
News
"The short stories in Sealskin, by contrast, are small gems of concision and intensity. The title story, which won the 2014 Writers’ Trust/McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize ... is one of several pieces in the book that demonstrate Keevil’s finesse at marrying pristine, fluid prose to situations and characters that pack a large dollop of feeling into a highly concentrated space. “Edges” is an emotional powerhouse about a clerk at a ski-equipment rental store who takes revenge on an abusive father; the final moments of this piece are heartrending in their potency…. And “Mangleface,” about a video-store clerk’s tenuous relationship with a customer whose face has been horribly scarred in a car crash, is a bracingly unsentimental look at the limits of empathy and fellow-feeling. Keevil does not write about archetypal working-class heroes: he’s too canny for that. The men in these stories are flawed and imperfect, but it is precisely this nuance that renders them so human on the page. And Keevil is highly attuned to what details should be left out: one of the most haunting pieces involves a bereaved father who picks up a hitchhiker transporting some extremely disturbing baggage. This squirm-inducing story is rendered all the more powerful and uncomfortable for its utter lack of resolution."
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About the Author
Tyler Keevil

Tyler Keevil was born in Edmonton, grew up in Vancouver, and in his mid-twenties moved to Wales. He is the author of three novels—Fireball, The Drive and No Good Brother—and his short fiction has appeared in a wide range of magazines and anthologies in Britain, Canada and the United States. He has received a number of awards for his writing, including the Missouri Review Jeffrey E. Smith Editors’ Prize, the Wales Book of the Year People’s Prize and the Writers’ Trust of Canada / McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize (for “Sealskin,” in this collection). Among other things, he has worked as a tree planter, ice barge deckhand and shipyard labourer; he is now a Lecturer in Creative Writing at Cardiff University.

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