A Measure of Light

A Measure of Light - Paperback edition        A Measure of Light cover001

 “She felt herself to be poised between two places of equal, but different, terrors. Here, in England, persecution. There, in New England—wolves, forests, fierce winters.”

* Winner – New Brunswick Book Award 2016 *
*Longlisted – 2017 International DUBLIN Literary Award*

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  A Measure of Light is a fictionalized account of the life of the real Mary Dyer, a Puritan who comes to Massacusetts in 1635. Seeking freedom, she encounters crushing repression; and although married to a successful businessman and mother to six children, she finds herself an outcast. She returns to England alone, where she meets the radical young George Fox, founder of the Quakers. Returning to the New World, she realizes that she must follow her convictions in order to put an end to the brutal repression of the Quakers in Massachusetts, for whom death by hanging is the ultimate punishment.

Globe and Mail: “Superb….shatteringly exquisite…prose-wise, there isn’t a page in “A Measure of Light” where something extraordinary doesn’t happen. Like a method actor, Powning has infiltrated Mary’s world so completely that she seems to write from squarely within its walls. One of the finest books in the genre to come along.”

Telegraph-Journal: “A novel of great beauty..Powning offsets the austere existence of the Puritans and Quakers with warm, evocative writing. A keenly intelligent, memorable work of literature, Powning shows again that she is in the top tier of Canadian novelists.”

The Sun-Times : “Beth Powning is one of Canada’s literary gems…(A Measure of Light) is truly stunning…a novel that deserves a place on your bookshelf.”

The Chronicle Herald: “…a compelling, gorgeously written novel…”

The Toronto Star: “…a page-turner…beautiful…poignant.”

Sandra Gulland, author of “The Josephine Trilogy”: “A spellbinding work of biographical fiction, gorgeously written in spare, crystalline prose reminiscent of the finest witers of literary historical fiction today (Geraldine Brooks, Tracy Chevalier and Hilary Mantel come to mind)…”

Jenna Blum, NYTimes bestselling author of “Those Who Save Us”: “Beth Powning’s awe-inspiring historical fiction creates whole worlds, with great beauty and precision.”

Amanda Foreman, author of international bestsellers “A World on Fire” and “Georgiana: Duchess of Devonshire”: “A Measure of Light” is a compelling novel that strikes at the heart of the human condition.”

Tracy Kidder, Pulitzer prize-winning author of “Mountains Beyond Mountains”: “Only first-rate historical novels provide real transportation to the past. “A Measure of Light”…gives us both a compelling story and a fully imagined portrait of Puritan New England….fascinating.” 

Friends Journal: “…Powning has eloquently imagined a haunting story of a woman torn by domestic and cultural upheavals…this lovely novel offers (Mary Dyer’s) elegant voice.”