Sechelt author Theresa Kishkan has been nominated for a B.C. Book Prize, the Ethel Wilson Fiction prize, for her book A Man in a Distant Field.
Also up for awards are authors Betty C. Keller and Rosella M. Leslie for A Stain Upon the Sea: West Coast Salmon Farming.
The awards will be handed out at the 21st annual event on April 30 at the Renaissance Hotel, Vancouver Harbourside.
Established in 1985, the B.C. Book Prizes celebrate the achievements of British Columbia writers and publishers. The prizes are administered and awarded by members of a non-profit society that represents all facets of the publishing and writing community. Kishkan has lived on both coasts of Canada as well as in Greece, England and Ireland. She currently lives in Sechelt with her husband and three children. They run a small private press, High Ground Press. Kishkan is the author of a novel, Sisters of Grass, a novella, Inishbream, and several books of poetry.
After his family's death at the hands of the Black and Tans, Declan O'Malley flees Ireland and lands off the Coast of British Columbia in Kishkan's wonderful tale, A Man in a Distant Field.
Desperate to erase his horrific memories and terrible loss, he immerses himself in the task of translating Homer's Odyssey. While becoming close to the family on whose property he is living, O'Malley draws similarities between Odysseus' voyage and his own.
"There were days when he felt close to Odysseus. When working on parts of the poem that were Odysseus' story, he would stop and think of it as his own story Odysseus journeyed home over a period of years stopping here and there to prove his worth to gods who had no use for him He was not only brave but clever and could outwit the obstacles in his way," Kishkan said. "Declan had journeyed a long way by sea but alone. And the biggest difference between them? Odysseus was struggling homeward to a wife and son. Declan had no one. Home was a far country he wanted no part of."
Realizing he cannot create a future without confronting the past, O'Malley returns to Ireland carrying only the hope of possibility with him.