BookLore reveals One Book One County: Fate

May 30, 2019   ·   0 Comments

It is a grand collaboration: BookLore, founded and owned by Nancy Frater, teamed up with Grand Valley Public Library, Orangeville Public Library, and Shelburne Public Library to announce the winner of this august event: One Book One County, now in its 11th year. The reveal was held at BookLore, which was packed with avid readers and members of the arts community, this week. 

And the winner is – Fate by Ian Hamilton!

Welsh-born Canadian mystery writer, Mr. Hamilton has carved out a considerable name for himself with his twelve books, the Ava Lee crime/ mystery series. These have been short-listed and won him many accolades and awards, including Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel, a Toronto Star Top 5 Fiction Book of the Year and a Quill & Quire Top 5 Fiction Book of the Year. Mr. Hamilton was acclaimed as one of the 10 mystery/crime writers from the last 30 years that should be on your bookshelf by BBC Culture. 

The Ava Lee series is being adapted for television, with an option for film.

However, the book that brought him this latest note of appreciation is not, as many expected, an additional volume of his Ava Lee series but a new foray into the life of another character, Uncle Chow.

Uncle Chow was a supporting character in the first six books of the Ava Lee series. Now telling his own story, the reader begins the book with a terrifying description of his swim across the water from mainland China to Hong Kong. Where many have failed, he succeeds. Such determination, intelligence and strength lead him, over the next ten years or so, to a position of power and influence: the Mountain Master of Fanling. What does he do with that prestige is the real test. In dealing with the many evils of gang wars and rivalries that beset his beloved Hong Kong, what can he achieve? 

Mr. Hamilton’s portrayal of Hong Kong itself brings the city right to the reader, while following Uncle Chow’s perilous times. The smells and sights of the city enrich the story with a very believable background. It is a book filled with violence, yet impresses the reader with Uncle Chow’s ability to deal with the dangers.

The point of having One Book One County is for the county to read the book over the summer as a single huge book club. Later, in September, comes the finale, which Mr. Hamilton will attend – a reading, conversation, Canadians loving to read and talk about books. This year, the Finale is at Grace Tipling Hall in Shelburne on September 15.

Fate is the first of a spin-off trilogy. 

Having said that, Mr. Hamilton has finished the next Ava Lee, Mountain Master of Sha Tin, which is coming out in July, 2019, the 13th in the series.

One of the Chief Librarians at the reception admitted that she was disappointed not to have Ava Lee back in the new Hamilton book. However, she soon found herself captivated by the character of Uncle Chow and the intensely interesting story Mr. Hamilton has penned, that she was very satisfied to have his new book as the choice for One Book One County this year. You can borrow the book at any of libraries.


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