Born "on the wrong side of the double dike" in the mythical Mennonite village of Gutenthal, Yasch Siemens seems destined for a life as a hired hand in love with the wrong girl. But all of that changes when he meets Oata Needarp. Oata is determined to make Yasch hers, and it only takes some chokecherry wine and the fragrance of Oata's "Evening in Schanzenfeld" perfume to seal Yasch's fate. Shortlisted for both the Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour and the Books in Canada Best First Book Award, The Salvation of Yasch Siemens is an outrageous, comic ride through Canadian literature's most unforgettable community.
Now this enduring Canadian classic includes a loving preface from the author, Armin Wiebe, and an insightful new essay from Nathan Dueck. Together they rediscover the warmth and wit in the world of Gutenthal, a profound part of Canada's literary landscape.
"Armin Wiebe is a comic storyteller without equal in Canada today. Please hold your sides while reading." --Robert Kroetsch"Armin Wiebe draws us into the funny, sad world of Yasch, and into a culture hidden from most of the literary scene. Until now. This is a wonderful, out of kilter book." --Sandra Birdsell"This is Wiebe's first novel, and it's an impressive debut... He has brought to life a colorful world that seems from the outside to be tranquil and uneventful, but which has its own inner tensions and imperatives." --The Globe and MailIn Winkler, it's said, The Salvation of Yasch Siemens is off the shelves but available under the counter. Some people seem to find the portrait of a people unflattering but it's clear they can't resist looking anyway. Though it's hard to determine precisely who all the buyers are, Yasch, in the few months it's been released, has become the fastest seller yet for Winnpeg's Turnstone Press."
--Doug Whiteway, Winnipeg Free Press"The Salvation of Yasch Siemens brings tears of laughter to the eyes, a pang to the heart, fellow feeling, and a sense of gratitude and admiration. One feels gratitude because someone who has gone perhaps somewhat the same route as the reader has taken the trouble to delineate the experience. and one cannot but admire the skill and attractiveness of the result."
--Henry Wiebe, The New Quarterly"as boisterously funny as it is, Wiebe displays an impressive sensitivity for his characters and their plights. He coyly undermines the woman's traditional place as obedient underling by creating strong female characters"
--Brian Geary, The Pembina Times"the greatness of this book takes it beyond the category of Mennonite literature, beyond the regional category of prairie literature, beyond the boundaries of Canadian literature"
--Debra Martens, Rubicon 4"delightfully comic first novel" -John Parr, Toronto Star
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