Last Friday night I had the pleasure of attending the launch of Susan Juby’s new book, The Woefield Poultry Collective, at the Urban Beet in Nanaimo, BC. Here’s a photo of Susan signing her book for me.
I’m a big fan of Susan Juby’s YA books, especially the Alice series. The Woefield Poultry Collective is her first adult novel, and it’s every bit as engaging and entertaining as I expected. Both funny and dark, it bears her trademark emphasis on the bizarreness of life.
The book is set on Vancouver Island, an incredibly beautiful spot with spectacular mountains, ocean beaches and ancient rainforests. But there’s another side you won’t see in the tourist info – drive along any back road and you’ll find a place like Woefield Farm, full of ramshackle buildings, questionable livestock, and nutbar characters living wacky and often desperate lives.
In The Woefield Poultry Collective, Susan Juby mocks just about everything, while at the same time acknowledging with insight and humour the very real effects of misfortune, irresponsibility and despair. But in the end she delivers a message of hope.
My hope is that she’ll write a sequel. I’d love to know what happens next on Woefield Farm. Meanwhile, I’ll be reading her addiction memoir, Nice Recovery.