cover-image-%22new-under-the-sun%22The Story

Shannon Carew has a complicated relationship with history. Born a Newfoundlander, she has spent years on the other side of the country in order to erase her past and set down new roots. But when an opportunity to work with Newfoundland and Labrador’s archaeological sites appears, Shannon cannot resist and decides to return home. What awaits her is unexpected – for among the threads of history, and the tangles of her old life, is the chance to discover a new connection.

New Under the Sun is a classic exploration; for in telling the story of Shannon Carew, it also tells the story of the Maritime Archaic, the Norse, the Basques, the Beothuks, and those who came after. It tells the story of Newfoundland: a place where the land is tied forever with the sea, the East makes contact with the West, the past mingles unexpectedly with the present, and hope carries on in the blood of its people.


“A deft hopscotch through history. Major’s strongest work in years – which is saying something.” The Telegram

“Past, present skillfully merged… an intricate tapestry… I read it cover to cover in one sitting.” Chronicle Herald

“… fascinating exploration… a gripping, even poetic, narrative of survival… Major’s verbal play is delightful.” Globe and Mail

“…well-written, nuanced, and compelling.” Canadian Literature


Atlantic Book Award
Heritage and History Book Award

Author’s Comments

This is the first in a proposed trilogy of adult historical novels. Framed by a contemporary story, the narrative moves back in time to some of the first peoples who came to live in what is now Newfoundland and Labrador. The burial mound at L’Anse Amour was my initial inspiration. Here, archaeologists discovered the remains of a small child buried 7500 years ago, face down with a slab of rock on the child’s back. I couldn’t help but speculate on why the child was buried in that way. That back story lead to others, in particular to the final days of Shanawdithit, the intelligent, artistic young woman who was the last of the Beothuks.

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