Bitter rivals. Festering animosities. Gossip, innuendo and scandal. And don’t forget the gun. A ragtag group of settlers come to Manitoulin Island in the 1870s with dreams of building a better future. What they find instead is murder. Based on the real-life 1877 killings of two members of one family by two members of another. The Haweaters brings to life some of Manitoulin’s earliest European settlers as they struggle against nature, poverty, and each other in a collective quest to leave their dubious pasts behind them and attain the prosperity they know they deserve in this rugged wilderness community. But as people and animals go wayward — and the lawman’s warnings go unheeded — it seems increasingly doubtful things will come to a peaceful end unless cool heads somehow prevail. But cool heads are in short supply. So when the whiskey starts to flow, the only questions that remain are: Who will strike first? Who will remain standing when the battle is finished? And what in God’s name is anyone supposed to do about it on an island where rules are forever being broken, the law is constantly changing, and no one seems inclined to pull back from the brink of a disaster that has been brewing since the day these families first arrived? It’s early summer on Manitoulin Island and things are about to get brutal.
The Haweaters brings to life the violent, real-life double-murder of Charles and William Bryan by two members of the Amer family on Manitoulin Island in 1877. Well know in its day, but unknown to us now, this murder pitted a wealthy landowner against his impoverished neighbour. It's a tale of treachery, gossip, drunkenness, arson and the merciless deaths of two not-so-innocent victims.
Vanessa Farnsworth has published more than 100 columns and articles (including several on Lyme disease) in national and regional publications, including Canadian Gardening, Canadian Living, Cottage, Garden Making, The Creston Valley Advance, The Grower, Harrowsmith Country Life, Kootenay Life East, Route 3, and Vitality Magazine. She holds a degree in English from Toronto's York University, a diploma in print journalism from Oakville's Sheridan College, and she studied creative writing at The Humber School for Writers. Her literary fiction has been published in journals across Canada and in the United States, including The Dalhousie Review, dANDelion, The New Quarterly, PRECIPICe, Qwerty, and Reed Magazine.