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Finding Edward by Sheila Murray

Finding Edward by Sheila Murray

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Shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award
Longlisted for Canada Reads 2023
A Globe and Mail Best Book

Cyril Rowntree migrates to Toronto from Jamaica in 2012. Managing a precarious balance of work and university he begins to navigate his way through the implications of being racialized in his challenging new land.

A chance encounter with a panhandler named Patricia leads Cyril to a suitcase full of photographs and letters dating back to the early 1920s. Cyril is drawn into the letters and their story of a white mother’s struggle with the need to give up her mixed race baby, Edward. Abandoned by his own white father as a small child, Cyril’s keen intuition triggers a strong connection and he begins to look for the rest of Edward’s story.

As he searches, Cyril unearths fragments of Edward’s itinerant life as he crisscrossed the country. Along the way, he discovers hidden pieces of Canada’s Black history and gains the confidence to take on his new world.

Paperback, 332 pages

Sheila Murray’s acclaimed novel, Finding Edward, has been called ‘remarkable,’ ‘powerful’ and ‘a touchstone.’ Her articles and short fiction have appeared in Canadian magazines and journals including, Refuge Journal, Descant, The Dalhousie Review, Exile, TOK, Writing the New Toronto, Room and The New Quarterly. Sheila’s writing has been supported by the Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council.

A resident of Hamilton, Ontario, Sheila was born and raised in England. Her father was Black and Jamaican and her mother was white and English, but DNA analysis reveals a multiracial ancestry that spans much of the world. This inspires her continuing interest in issues of race and identity. Most of Sheila’s working life was spent as a documentary filmmaker and television sound editor. Since 2012, she has worked in the social justice, not-for-profit sector, and now leads a grassroots, volunteer-driven initiative that engages urban residents in adaptation to local climate change impacts. She has a BA in Journalism and an MA in Immigration and Settlement Studies.

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