ORACLE OF CUMAE
Second Story Press, 2019
Mariuccia Umbellino is a young woman living in the remote mountain village of Montemonaco, Italy, in the early years of the 19th century. Nearby, the secret recesses of the Grotto of the Fates – home to an ancient oracle of Apollo – are about to be invaded and destroyed on orders from the Pope. But the men sent to do the dirty work don’t know who (or what) they’re dealing with. This oracle and this girl won’t be messed with. In the dark of night, Mariuccia and her mother set out to rescue their revered oracle. In the adventure that ensues, things are blown up, love spells are miscast and then recast, revenge is taken, and the mysterious fate of a jetttadore – a person born with the Evil Eye –is finally revealed.
THE GEOMANCER’S COMPASS
Tundra Press, 2012
Sixteen-year-old Miranda Liu has a summer internship at CanBoard, part of an international effort to develop a digital, planetary infrastructure through the rapidly developing technology of Augmented Reality. That was before her world turned upside-down.
Summoned to her grandmother’s deathbed, Miranda finds herself entrusted with a family heirloom – a seventeenth century geomancer’s compass – as well as a sacred mission. It’s now up to Miranda and her irritating, dyslexic cousin Brian to lift the curse that is slowly decimating their dysfunctional Chinese-Canadian family, a curse that dates back to 1908 and a period of extreme anti-Chinese sentiment in Canada. In order to do this, Miranda and Brian must employ Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and old Chinese magic. The question is: can they stop bickering long enough to save their family – and themselves – before it’s too late?
With humour and suspense, The Geomancer’s Compass imagines a world in the near future – a future that for the Liu family seems doomed by the ghosts of the past.
Dundurn Press, 2013
This contemporary novel is about a middle-aged woman who travels to the family cottage to scatter the ashes of her husband, father and twin sister, only to discover that a mysterious and menacing stranger has claim-staked a portion of her property. In the course of dealing with this intrusion, she must also contend with her troubled past, her adversarial relationship with her sister and her own self-destructive tendencies. Surface Rights is a darkly funny novel about belonging, family, dogs, fear of fat, ghosts and place.
Exile Editions, 2009
Set against the historical backdrop of the events leading up to the Trail of Tears and deeply rooted in the mythology and sacred history of the “Real People” (the name by which the Cherokee referred to themselves), Broken Road is an account of the intense love-hate relationship between white Americans and the tribe that, more than any other, embraced white culture and emulated its institutions. It was a relationship that was to end in the destruction of the Cherokee way of life and the heartbreaking loss of their ancestral lands.
THE UNCHARTED HEART
Knopf Canada, 2001
"Gold, greed and great writing. With her latest collection of short stories, The Uncharted Heart, Melissa Hardy continues her creation of luminous prose. . . . Hardy infused the landscape and characters with such life that even more stories proliferate in readers’ minds than we find on the page. The Uncharted Heart turns out to be a dazzling performance. . . . The Uncharted Heart is a remarkable evocation of events and place in Canadian history, a discerning examination of human motivation and behavior, and an adroit use of language. Melissa Hardy has an obvious place in the chart of Canadian writers.”
Oberon Press, 1995
A book-length collection about the past and present of the Cherokee nation. The poetry of nature, the passion of ancient folksong, the soul of a people, they’re all here in this elegant suite of stories. One of the stories contained in this collection, Long Man the River, won the 1994 Journey Prize, a Canadian literary award, presented annually by McClelland and Stewart and the Writers' Trust of Canada for the best short story published by an emerging writer in a Canadian literary magazine. The award was endowed by James A. Michener, who donated the Canadian royalty earnings from his 1988 novel Journey and is the largest monetary award given in Canada to an up-and-coming writer for a short story or excerpt from a fiction work-in-progress.
A CRY OF BEES
Viking Press, 1970
"Emmeline, Emmeline. For God’s sake, Verbena!” is a cry frequently heard in the environs of a boarding house in the small town of Chaucy, Indiana. The time is the early 1950’s, and Emmeline is an eight-year-old girl living without the benefit of a mother, being raised, more or less, by her hag-ridden, Falstaff-beer-drinking “Uncle Lamb.” Lamb, also, more or less, runs the boarding house, which is stocked with some of the most eccentric ladies you are ever likely to meet in southern Indiana – or anywhere else.”