Ladysmith author explores community as The Moon Watched It All

Shelley A. Leedahl releasing her latest work, an illustrated tale for all ages

“In a time before this time, when the world moved at a pony’s pace, a woman rocked by her window and turned, every evening, to the moon. the woman was neither young nor old, neither happy nor particularly sad.

She was known as Mirada, for she was always gazing. Like the moon, she was what she was.”

So begins the The Moon Watched It All, the latest work by acclaimed Ladysmith author Shelley A. Leedahl, “written in richly allusive, atmospheric prose that will keep lovers of words pinned to the page,” according to Kirkus Reviews

It’s the poignant story of pensive Mirada, a solitary woman who lives in a bygone village far far away. One day she sees a shy orphan boy who has been cast out of his village. She opens her door to him and as time passes the two unlikely solitudes become a necessary part of each other’s lives — as the moon watched it all.

Stirring detailed illustrations by Toronto-based Aino Anto provide the moody and moving visuals for this part fairy tale, part modern allegory, that Leedahl describes as an all-ages work about the importance of community.

“In this 21st century, with our advanced transportation systems and extraordinary technologies, it’s easier than ever for people to connect, yet we’re experiencing an epidemic of loneliness, which is tragic for both mental and physical health,” Leedahl said.

“In The Moon Watched It All we follow two disparate characters — Mirada, a senior whose family has long been gone from her life, and a bullied, nameless boy — in their solitary journeys. This story is an homage to human resilience, and to the value in forming even the smallest of communities.”

The book is the 12th from Leedahl, who also wrote The Bone Talker; I Wasn’t Always Like This; Listen, Honey; Wretched Beast; and The House of the Easily Amused. Her poetry most recently appeared in The Best of the Best Canadian Poetry in English: Tenth Anniversary Edition (Tightrope Books).

She was born in Kyle, SK, spent her formative years in Meadow Lake, and raised her family in Saskatoon. She lived in Edmonton and worked in radio before moving to Ladysmith in 2014.

She has earned several international fellowships, regularly presents her work, and leads writing workshops across Canada.

An enthusiastic ambassador of Ladysmith, she can frequently be found running or hiking on Holland Creek Trail, except on Tuesday afternoons, when she is playing guitar, piano, and singing for residents at the Lodge on 4th.

Everyone is welcome to Fox and Hounds on Wednesday, April 24, at 7 p.m. for Ladysmith launch of the book.

A book signing is scheduled at Salamander Books on Saturday, April 27, from 1 to 3 p.m.

Just Posted

Going with the flow in River Tales

Crofton author documents many interesting experiences from her time on the Cowichan River

Paul Manly to host series of community meetings

The first meeting is scheduled for July 18, at the North Oyster Community Centre, 7:00pm - 8:30pm

Nanaimo Ladysmith education support workers reach tentative three-year deal

Union membership to vote on collective agreement on July 31

Island pickleball players perfectly prepared

Top-notch action at Fuller Lake Park in singles, doubles and mixed doubles

Waterfront Gallery to show Journeys, a multimedia experience of the real and imagined

The exhibition runs July 20 - July 28. There will be an open house on July 20 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

VIDEO: Plant-based burgers may not be as healthy as they seem

Both the Impossible and Beyond Burger have more saturated fat than beef burgers

‘Beyond the call’: Teen in police custody gets birthday surprise by B.C. Mountie

Unusual celebration started when Staff Sgt. Paul Vadik went to visit the teen in his Coquitlam cell

Thunderstorms forecast across B.C.

Environment Canada has issued a thunderstorm watch for B.C.’s central Interior

Driver who killed B.C. motorcyclist receives absolute discharge

Chase family speechless following decision by BC Review Board

Lower gas prices slow annual inflation rate to Bank of Canada’s 2% bull’s-eye

Prices showed strength in other areas — led by a 17.3 per cent increase in the cost of fresh vegetables

B.C. moves to preserve 54 of its biggest, oldest trees

Fir, cedar, spruce, pine, yew set aside from logging

Report of dead body in B.C. park actually headless sex doll

This discovery, made at Manning Park on July 10, led police to uncovering two other sex mannequins

Grand Forks fire chief found to have bullied, harassed volunteer firefighter: report

WorkSafeBC, third-party human resources investigation looking into allegations complete

Dog recovering after being drenched in hot coffee, B.C. man charged

Man was taken into custody, charged, and released pending a court date

Most Read