Kevin Cannon is spinning one huge, huge yarn here; a classic adventure story that delights in ridiculous set-ups, far-fetched schemes, hidden treasure, mysterious strangers, outlandish characters and ridiculously contrived threats leading to even more ridiculously contrived rescues. Everything in Far Arden connects, every character is there for some reason implicit to the simple plot of one sailor attempting to reach the mythical Far Arden, a tropical island paradise in the middle of the barren and desolate Canadian Arctic. And it’s a great, great adventure. — Richard Bruton, Forbidden Planet International
Created by Kevin Cannon.
From acclaimed creator Kevin Cannon (Top Ten, the Stuff of Life) comes Far Arden, a thrilling tale of arctic exploration that Bookforum raves is “an adventure, a comedy, a mystery, and a tragedy… what begins as a slightly silly lark becomes an engaging, even haunting story about desire and loss.”
In the vast, frozen plains of Northern Canada, hardened people do the best they can to eek out a living in the icy tundra. Working on seas patrolled by the mighty Royal Canadian Arctic Navy, they fish, they hunt, they trade, and they drink (oh how they drink), but they also dream… of warmer climates and better days, of a mythical tropical island somewhere in the vast frozen seas called Far Arden, where the sun is always shining and the good times never end. Most folk think that Far Arden is a myth that sailors tell themselves to keep their spirits up, but some people believe that it’s very real, and they’ll stop at nothing to find it
Crusty old sea dog Army Shanks is a former member of the Royal Canadian Arctic Navy, current ne’er-do-well, and legendary brawler of the high Arctic seas. Years ago, his mentor Simon Arctavius struck off to find Far Arden and left Army a map hidden aboard the Areopagitica, a ship that was then stolen from him. Now, after searching for the ship for years, Army has finally found it, but taking it back isn’t going to be as easy as he thinks. Turns out the current captain of the ship is Pinho, an old enemy who’s married to Fortuna, an ex-girlfriend who also may have been the love of Army’s life. As Army tries to retake the ship, the shock of this revelation gives Pinho and Fortuna the upper hand, and they manage to capture Army’s partner Halfley and fling Army into the icy seas!
Now, along with a plucky orphan stowaway named Alistair Cavendish and two hapless college students named David and Amber who have a very important message from a mysterious figure from Army’s past, he’ll have to track down the Areopagitica again, rescue Halfley, and retake the ship before Pinho and Fortuna can uncover its secrets and find Far Arden themselves. But there’s more than just water between Army and his mark – along the way he’ll have to contend with devious circus performers, heinous villains, hungry polar bears, bitter ex-friends, and the full might of the Royal Canadian Arctic Navy! And even if he does manage to find Far Arden first, nothing will be able to prepare him for the shocking secrets that the island holds.
People will be betrayed! Secrets will be revealed! Asses will be kicked! In Far Arden, there’s an amazing twist lurking behind every iceberg and enough action to raise the temperature of even the coldest climate. A story about choices, consequences, love, and loss, Far Arden is an exciting, often hilarious adventure into the unknown.