The Allegra Series

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Dundurn, 1999 - Fiction - 192 pages
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Weaving finely spun filaments of the lyric and mythic, Barbara Lambert creates a vivid tapestry of a year in the life of Vancouver's Allegra Schliemann, a middle-aged woman in the throes of a knotty love affair with a married man, a newly-crafted career as an artisan and a battle against a debilitating disease. Unable to see her way clear of the emotional clutter these changes wreak, Allegra hires would-be artist Brad Lindhall to fashion her a mirrored wall, praying it will bring light and clarity into the encroaching dusk of her own life. Meanwhile, in Toronto, Brad's estranged wife Mona researches a work known as A Brief History of Cloth and Clay for an upcoming installation, her voice reaching into the past and across the country. In this brilliant recasting of a traditional love triangle, three artists find their way into the heart of genius, and of darkness, emerging strangely and irrevocably intertwined. Like her many mythological predecessors--Philomela, Ariadne and Athena--Allegra encircles lovers, entraps enemies and unfurls in the face of adversity.

 

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Contents

June
1
July
19
August
39
September
55
October
81
November
97
December
111
January
135
February
143
March
155
April
167
May
183
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About the author (1999)

Barbara Lambert was awarded The Malahat Review's Novella Prize for "A Message for Mr. Lazarus" in 1996 by judges Jack Hodgins, Michael Kenyon and Sharon Ris. Her story "The Queen of Saxony" was a CBC Competition finalist and a Journey Prize nominee. She has been published in several Canadian literary magazines and divides her time between North Vancouver and Penticton, BC. The Allegra Series is her debut novel. Weaving finely spun filaments of the lyric and mythic, Barbara Lambert creates a vivid tapestry of a year in the life of Vancouver's Allegra Schliemann, a middle-aged woman in the throes of a knotty love affair with a married man, a newly-crafted career as an artisan and a battle against a debilitating disease. Unable to see her way clear of the emotional clutter these changes wreak, Allegra hires would-be artist Brad Lindhall to fashion her a mirrored wall, praying it will bring light and clarity into the encroaching dusk of her own life. Meanwhile, in Toronto, Brad's estranged wife Mona researches a work known as A Brief History of Cloth and Clay for an upcoming installation, her voice reaching into the past and across the country. In this brilliant recasting of a traditional love triangle, three artists find their way into the heart of genius, and of darkness, emerging strangely and irrevocably intertwined. Like her many mythological predecessors-Philomena, Ariadne and Athena-Allegra encircles lovers, entraps enemies and unfurls in the face of adversity.

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