A gritty tragi-comic fairy tale of sexual obsession and longing, based in equal parts on the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice and the spaghetti westerns of Sergio Leone, Once Upon A Time In West Toronto is the story of outsiders reinventing themselves in Toronto's immigrant neighbourhoods from the 1970s to the present. It follows the adventures of Ida, an Italian proxy bride who came to Canada married a man she’d never met,, only to run off with his son; her lover, the brilliant ditch digger, Marcello; Bum Bum, a virtuous thief; and various hustlers, forgers and whores. A companion book to Terri Favro's award-winning novella, The Proxy Bride, the book uses historical events in Italy and Canada to create a fast-paced and entertaining read that is both heartrending and hilarious. “A sinewy and sensuous modern tale complete with compelling characters—a few bad guys and several lost souls—a wonderful addition to the stories about Italian Canadians and the trials of immigration. Favro puts her writing gifts to great use here, holding up a mirror to the troublesome past and shining a light on the difficult truths with sharply skilled prose.” —Eufemia Fantetti, author of A Recipe For Disaster & Other Unlikely Tales of Love “In Once Upon a Time in West Toronto, Terri Favro deftly weaves together multiple spellbinding narratives over the span of six decades, expertly covering the full spectrum of human experience from love and revenge, to loyalty, honour and forgiveness.
Set during Toronto’s coming of age – against the political backdrop of the rise of feminism and the immigrant experience – Once Upon a Time in West Toronto is a novel filled with wry humour, unflinching honesty and unforgettable characters. Terri Favro is a wonderful story teller who knows how to wring every last drop of emotion from each sentence. Filled with action and suspense, as well as heartbreak and insight, this novel is a page-turning delight.” —Bianca Marais, author of Hum If You Don’t Know The Words