book cover of First Snow, Last Light

First Snow, Last Light

(2017)
A novel by

 
 
From the author of the critically acclaimed, prizewinning and internationally bestselling The Colony of Unrequited Dreams comes an epic family mystery with a powerful, surprise ending, which features the return of the ever-fascinating Sheilagh Fielding, one of the most memorable characters in fiction.

Ned Vatcher, only 14, ambles home from school in the chill hush that precedes the first storm of the winter of 1936 to find the house locked, the family car missing, and his parents gone without a trace. From that point on, his life is driven by the need to find out what happened to the Vanished Vatchers. His father, Edgar, born to a poor family of fishermen, had risen to become the right-hand man to the colony's prime minister, then suffered an unexpected fall from grace. Were he and his wife murdered? Was it suicide? Had they run away? If so, why had they left their only child behind?
Ned soon finds himself enmeshed in another family, that of his missing father and the poverty from which the man somehow escaped. His grandparents, Nan and Reg, his Uncle Cyril and others, are themselves haunted by the inexplicable disappearance of a third Vatcher, a young man who was lost at sea on a calm and sunny day years earlier. Two other people loom large as Ned becomes Newfoundland's first media mogul, building an empire to insulate him from loss: a Jesuit priest named Father Duggan, and Sheilagh Fielding, a boozy giantess who, while wandering the city streets at night, composes satiric columns that scandalize the rich and powerful. In Ned, Fielding sees a surrogate for her two lost children, the secret that dogs her life, while Ned believes the enigmatic Fielding to be his soulmate.
The novel builds to a spectacular resolution of the mystery of all the Vanished Vatchers. Only Wayne Johnston could create such larger-than-life, mythic characters embroiled in events that leave us contemplating not only their tragedies and triumphs, but the forces that compel us all to act in ways that surprise and sometimes terrify us.

Genre: Literary Fiction

Praise for this book

"His books are beautifully written, among the funniest I’ve ever read, yet somehow at the same time among the most poignant and moving." - Annie Dillard

"[A] literary giant who has god-given talent." - Will Ferguson

"Wayne Johnston is a wondrous writer - of rich, irresistibly readable prose. He possesses a deft intelligence and a rare sense of what’s truly interesting to tell about life." - Richard Ford

"Wayne Johnston is a brilliant and accomplished writer." - Annie Proulx

"Why I love reading Wayne Johnston: The reader goes skittering through Wayne Johnston’s novels, driven inexorably forward on the force of his characters, on the power of his wit. Unlike most recent bestselling novels that are remembered for the plane flight and then promptly forgotten, Wayne’s stories have characters who move in and take up permanent residence." - Mary Walsh


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Used availability for Wayne Johnston's First Snow, Last Light

Hardback Editions

September 2017 : USA Hardback
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Title: First Snow, Last Light
Author(s): Wayne Johnston
ISBN: 0-7352-7256-5 / 978-0-7352-7256-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: Knopf Canada
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Paperback Editions

June 2018 : USA Paperback
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Title: First Snow, Last Light
Author(s): Wayne Johnston
ISBN: 0-7352-7257-3 / 978-0-7352-7257-6 (USA edition)
Publisher: Vintage Canada
Availability: Amazon   Amazon CA   


Audio Editions

June 2018 : USA Audio edition
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Title: First Snow, Last Light
Author(s): Wayne Johnston
Publisher: Penguin Random House Canada
Availability: Amazon   


June 2018 : Canada Audio edition
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Title: First Snow, Last Light
Author(s): Wayne Johnston
Publisher: Penguin Random House Canada
Availability: Amazon CA   


June 2018 : UK Audio edition
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Title: First Snow, Last Light
Author(s): Wayne Johnston
Publisher: Penguin Random House Canada
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

September 2017 : Canada Kindle edition
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Title: First Snow, Last Light
Author(s): Wayne Johnston
Publisher: Knopf Canada
Availability: Amazon CA