Archive for October, 2014

My October

I spotted My October by Clare Holden Rothman in the bookstore and decided I had to have it, regardless of what the book was about, and whether or not it was well written. Because I LOVE the cover. It reeks Montreal, specifically Le Plateau area with the outdoor staircases that are so unique to this great city. It deserves to sit on my coffee table while the leaves turn and litter the sidewalks, just like on the cover. This is a novel full of historical detail that brings memories to the forefront of my mind… the FLQ bombings, the murder of Pierre Laporte, and the kidnapping of James Richard Cross. They’re all in the book.  Yes, Je me souviens. Luc Levesque is a famous Quebec author who has been at odds with his life for awhile. He is recognized wherever he goes as a writer for a generation of Quebecers. His wife Hanna is Anglophone from a family and background very different from Luc’s. She is his translator, and has spent her adult life distancing herself from her English family. Hugo is their 14 year old son who struggles with his identity and fitting in at his elite French school. This is the story of those 3 identities and how they form a family and deal with life, conflicting emotions, ideals and views. The backdrop to this is the October Crisis. This is a beautifully written book.  It’s a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Awards for 2014, and it’s a well deserved nomination. If you like reading fiction books set in Canada by Canadian authors that deal with recent historical events, this is for you.  Read it and remember.

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No Safe House

Right from the get go Linwood Barclay has been one of my favourite authors. His latest book No Safe House is destined to be another great hit for this wonderful writer. This is the first time he’s done a cross over from one book to another. Terry Archer & family first appeared in No Time for Goodbye. They suffered a traumatic event that nearly cost them their lives. Now we continue with the Archers years later when wife Cynthia is living on her own, hoping to cool the demons that threaten to permanently ruin the relationship she has with her family. There’s been what appears to be a senseless murder of two elderly residents in their idyllic little town. Then daughter Grace gets into a nasty spot of trouble with her boyfriend due to peer pressure and bad judgement. Poor Terry is betwixed and between. He wants to help Grace before the authorities come calling, but try to keep Cynthia from figuring out that Grace is in a whole lot of trouble. Quickly the whole family become involved the shadowy underside of their hometown, and eventually they reconnect with the ruthless, unrepentant criminal that saves their lives 7 years ago who they had hoped never to lay eyes on again. As per usual Barclay is in top form. The book is definitely a fast paced thriller that doesn’t disappoint. If you’ve never read any of his books, I suggest reading No Time for Goodbye first. It’s not necessary but hey, you’ll get double the dose of enjoyment from one of Canada’s finest writers. Enjoy!  I certainly did. Barclay never disappoints.

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