Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town by Stephen Leacock
Between 1915 and 1925, Stephen Leacock was the best-known English-speaking humourist in the world. Originally born in the Isle of Wight in southern England, Leacock came to Canada with his family when he was six. They settled in the small town of Sutton, Ontario, which may have formed the foundation for Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town. The book first appeared as a newspaper serial and chronicles life in the fictional community of Mariposa, modelled on Orillia, Ontario. Life in Mariposa is never dull or ordinary. It's a town full of eccentrics, where boats sent to rescue passengers from a sinking steamer have to be rescued themselves, where the leading citizen is a 280-pound illiterate saloonkeeper, and where a barber who stumbles into a fortune is heralded as a financial wizard.