Plural voices, uninhibited writings, exploration of forms, hot topics of topicality… The novelties to appear in Quebec literature bring us to the meeting of a plethora of distinct universes. Here are 10 outings that stand out.
The underground notebooks, of Gabriel Cholette
One of the first releases of the year 2021 immediately wins us over with its stories lifting the veil on the life of “club kids” and the community queer. Inspired by Instagram codes, the young author draws from his experiences in the scenes underground large metropolises, from Montreal to Berlin, its literary material. In a series of short texts like so many snapshots of life, drugs, sex, endless parties and nights of ecstasy and decay are told, unfiltered and with assumed lightness, accompanied by magnificent illustrations queer by artist Jacob Pyne.
Triptych (Queer collection)
The Wren, of Jean-Francois Beauchemin
Prolific author, Jean-François Beauchemin has published a large number of works; novels, but also stories, notebooks, short stories and collections of poetry. He was twice a finalist for the Governor General’s Award of Canada. He comes back to us with a short novel, his 23e, which features an aging writer leading a peaceful country life, and describes the close relationship he has with his schizophrenic brother. A reflective text, all in delicacy and benevolence, on brotherly love and mental illness.
The reconstruction of paradise, of Robert Lalonde
On the night of December 26, 2018, the house of Robert Lalonde, known as an actor, but also as a writer, was completely destroyed by a violent fire, sweeping up in smoke the some 4,000 books that were in this house he maintained with care for 30 years with his partner. In these notebooks, he tells of the slow reconstruction of his paradise, in a clean and luminous writing crossed by the words of the American poet Walt Whitman, while the author has taken it into his head to translate his masterpiece, Leaves of Grass.
Rumen, of Jeremiah McEwen
Jérémie McEwen made a name for himself as a chronicler with a sharp and sharp pen (notably in the pages of La Presse), skillfully mixing philosophy and hip-hop, his two favorite subjects. After essays published in recent years, he returns to us this time with a collection of poetry drinking in slam and philosophy, which features a narrator who has decided to create a “real void” in him and in his stomach. , echoing the forced abstinence caused by the one who left him.
X Y Z
The daughter of herself, of Gabrielle Boulianne-Tremblay
Actress and writer Gabrielle Boulianne-Tremblay was selected for the Canadian Screen Awards as the best supporting actress for the film. Those who make revolutions halfway have only dug a grave, a first for a trans woman in Canada. After a first collection of poetry published in 2018, she is inspired by her own story, that of a little girl caught in the body of a boy, with this first novel which treads the territories of the literature of transidentity, a phenomenon hitherto unheard of in Quebec.
Memory is a cord of kindling, of Benoit Pinette
Best known by his artist name – Tire le coyote -, singer-songwriter Benoit Pinette comes to us with a very first collection of poetry all in sensitivity. Over the pages and stanzas, sweetness and pain intertwine (“Peace is a trench / a mass of ashes spread / on the unpredictable”), as Pinette throws the match in her childhood memories and searches the ashes of his past, to try to shed more light on the present.
Fall, by Esther Laforce
In In the early days of the Anthropocene, the narrator was writing a letter to her dying sister; with her second novel, Esther Laforce this time features a woman who fell into a fault during an earthquake, and who speaks to her child. Reflection on the violence of the world and how we experience it, Fall pits the hitherto comfortable life of a Montrealer against the misfortunes of the world, which the narrator decides to recount to her son in a long monologue, in an attempt to defy death. His essay Occupy the distances, which explores the same patterns, is published simultaneously by Leméac.
Valid, of Chris Bergeron
Formerly in charge of the late newspaper See, Chris Bergeron now holds the position of Creative Director at Cossette. With this first novel, which is also part of the literature of transidentity, the trans author challenges genres by skillfully combining autobiographical elements with a science fiction novel, all sprinkled with a cyberpunk aesthetic. The story set in 2050, in a transfigured world under high surveillance and in perpetual quarantine, tells the story of a trans Montreal woman who revolutionizes herself by deciding to tell her truth.
X Y Z
The desiderata, of Marie Helene Poitras
The most recent work by Marie Hélène Poitras, the excellent Griffintown, won the France-Quebec prize; nine years later, she comes back to us with The desiderata, a novel that takes place in the imaginary land of Noirax, where a long tradition of secrets reigns, which gave birth to desiderata, a line of women with tragic fates. Until the arrival of Aliénor, who seeks answers and wants to change the course of things in this story which pays homage to the voices that one tries to gag.
The world after, of Jean-Philippe Baril Guérard
Playwright, author, screenwriter (the miniseries False Departures) and actor, Jean-Philippe Baril Guérard wears several hats with an indisputable talent. His previous novels have been a great success, including Royal, winner of the Literary Prize for college students in 2018, and its most recent, Wild Life Manual, finalist for the Prix des libraires du Québec. Here he is back, probably still as cynical, with this new opus which takes place in the humor scene in Montreal and addresses subjects such as ambition, couple relationships and the #metoo movement.
Your Mother Editions
* Please note that due to current health measures, some publications may be postponed or delayed.