Page, Kathy 1958-

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PAGE, Kathy 1958-

PERSONAL: Born April 8, 1958, in London, England; immigrated to Canada; daughter of Harold Stanley (a surveyor) and Madge (a homemaker; maiden name, Toby) Page; children: two. Education: University of York, B.A. (with first-class honors), 1980; University of East Anglia, M.A., 1988. Politics: "Feminist." Religion: None.

ADDRESSES: Home—British Columbia, Canada. Agent—c/o Author Mail, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, Orion House, 5 Upper St. Martin's Lane, London WC2H 9EA, England.

CAREER: Carpenter in Brixton and London, England, 1982-86; tutor and writer, 1986—. Has taught at universities in England, Finland, and Estonia; has served as writer in residence for schools and other organizations.

MEMBER: Writers' Union of Canada.

AWARDS, HONORS: Eastern Arts writer's bursary, 1989; Hawthornden International Writers' Retreat fellowship, 1992; Traveller Writing Award, 1992, for "Pike"; Arts Council major bursary, 1994; Bridport Short Story Prize, 1994, for "My Beautiful Wife."


Back in the First Person (novel), Virago (London, England), 1986.

The Unborn Dreams of Clara Riley (novel), Virago (London, England), 1987.

Island Paradise (novel), Methuen (London, England), 1989.

As in Music, and Other Stories, Methuen (London, England), 1989.

Frankie Styne and the Silver Man (novel), Weidenfeld & Nicolson (London, England), 1992.

The Story of My Face (novel), Weidenfeld & Nicolson (London, England), 2002.

Alphabet (novel), Weidenfeld & Nicolson (London, England), 2004.

Also author of pieces for television and radio. Contributor of short stories to numerous anthologies.

SIDELIGHTS: Kathy Page once told CA: "Most of my work . . . is preoccupied with the relationship between individuals and the Law—with a capital 'L': not just the judicial system but the bottom-line rules of the communities in which people live. This preoccupation is particularly relevant to women."

In her 2002 novel The Story of My Face, Page explores how outsiders can affect communities. As professor of religious studies Natalie Baron searches to uncover the history of Tuomas Envall, founder of a religious sect that forbids all forms of images. While Natalie visits Envall's native Finland, she must face her own childhood memories of a tragic encounter with the sect. The story of Envall's transformation from community outsider to religious leader is intercut with young Natalie's trip to an Envallist retreat with a neighboring family—a trip where she, also an outsider, ends up being disfigured. The two interwoven stories result in "a deeply layered mixture of psychological thriller and historical analysis," Aisling Foster observed in the Times Literary Supplement. While Foster found the ending somewhat "implausible," she added that Page's writing "is lit with an immediate sense of period, summoning images which are by turns softly painterly, sharply filmic or as murky as those first television images of the moon landing." A Kirkus Reviews critic enjoyed unraveling both strands of the story and concluded that The Story of My Face is "quietly powerful, with considerable emotional depth: an intriguing account of tortured faith and thwarted desire."



Kirkus Reviews, August 1, 2003, review of The Story of My Face, p. 986.

New Statesman, February 7, 1986, Sheila MacLeod, review of Back in the First Person, p. 29.

New Statesman & Society, December 14, 1990, Katie Campbell, review of As in Music, and Other Stories, p. 39.

Times Literary Supplement, July 7, 1989, Colin Greenland, review of Island Paradise, p. 738; April 26, 2002, Aisling Foster, "A Cuckoo in the Nest," p. 21.


Writers Union of Canada Web site, (February 18, 2004).*