Leaving Home, Of the Fields, Lately, and Salt-Water Moon
Written by David French
Foreword by Albert Schultz
Publication Date May 15, 2009
David French's award-winning plays Leaving Home, Of the Fields, Lately and Salt-Water Moon are available for the first time in a special one-volume edition, with an introduction by Albert Schultz.
Set in the 1950s, Leaving Home tells the story of the Mercers, a Newfoundland family who have emigrated to the mainland and lost all sense of their place in the world. In Of the Fields, Lately, the emotionally charged sequel to Leaving Home, young Ben Mercer returns home after being gone for two years and confronts the family he left behind. Salt-Water Moon was written later than the other two plays but tells the earlier story of the courtship of Jacob and Mary Mercer in Newfoundland.
Leaving Home was named one of the "100 Most Influential Canadian Books" by the Literary Review of Canada. Of the Fields, Lately won the Chalmers Award in 1973, and Salt-Water Moon won the Canadian Authors Association Award for Drama, the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Best New Play, and the Hollywood Drama-Logue Critics’ Award.
David French was one of Canada's best-known and critically acclaimed playwrights. He was one of the first inductees into the Newfoundland Arts Hall of Honour, and was an Officer of the Order of Canada. Among his most beloved works are the semi-autobiographical Mercer plays: Leaving Home, Of the Fields, Lately, Salt-Water Moon, 1949, and Soldier's Heart. Leaving Home was named one of Canada's 100 Most Influential Books by the Literary Review of Canada and one of the 1,000 Most Essential Plays in the English Language by the Oxford Dictionary of Theatre. The Mercer plays have touched audiences across North America, and in Europe, South America, and Australia. David French died in 2010.
Albert Schultz is Founding Artistic Director of the Soulpepper Theatre Company in Toronto.
"[A] solidly fashioned, powerful emotional drama...All of its characters have the quality of theatrical life...All prove worthy of our attention, understanding, and laughter." Globe and Mail
"A play of remarkable dynamic life...The lacerating quality of inner-family warfare carries both superb comedy and powerful emotional force...An overwhelming dramatic experience." Toronto Star
"An agonizingly beautiful work." New York Post
"Splendidly played...Immensely moving." Washington Post