“Toil and Peaceful Life” is the axiom that lies at the heart of Doukobor spiritual, personal, and community values. These values have always been, and continue to be, integral to the people who belong to this historically rich and vibrant community. During particular periods of their history, certain groups of Doukobors seemed to have carved a path that allowed them to embody and live these ideals in their daily lives and interactions. However, as the history of the Doukobor people demonstrates, putting this into practice was more difficult than envisioned and, paradoxically, has generated a great deal of conflict within the various spheres of the community itself – most certainly it has created conflicts with those from outside their self-contained community. It is at this juncture of conflict in the decades of the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s that the name Doukobor was to etch itself into the Canadian consciousness. It is during this time that Stenson sets his novel’s action against the backdrop of the Kootenay Region in and around Nelson, BC. To say Svoboda is a “Doukobor” novel is misleading, for it is much more than that. While Doukobor culture plays a central role in creating conflict, from the first few pages right to the end, it is also a novel of coming of age, a novel of accepting fate, and a great entertaining story.
ISBN: 9781771870450 Categories: Fiction, Literary
About the Author
Bill Stenson is a fiction writer born in Nelson, BC. He didn’t live there long. He has had stories published in many of Canada’s fine line of literary magazines and has a short story collection titled Translating Women and a novel titled Svoboda, both with Thistledown Press.
Fiction is his main interest, but he reads a fair amount of poetry and he loves memoirs. He was head cook and bottle washer at CanadianMemoirs.com for years where he was privileged to interview many of North America’s finest memoirists. He has a book in electronic form called Memoir Writing for Smart People available for download.
Stenson co-founded The Claremont Review, an international literary magazine that publishes young-adult writers aged 13 to 19. He worked for the magazine as an editor for more than twenty years and is proud that this magazine is still alive and well to this day.
Bill Stenson lives in Victoria, B.C. with his wife poet Susan Stenson.
Hanne and Her BrotherFiction, Biographical, Family Life, Literary