Nadia Comaneci's gold-medal performance at the Olympic Games in Montreal is the starting point for a whole new generation. Eric Dupont watches the performance on TV, mesmerized. The son of a police officer (Henry VIII) and a professional cook-as he likes to remind us-he grows up in the depths of the Quebec countryside with a new address for almost every birthday and little but memories of his mother to hang on to. His parents have divorced, and the novel's narrator relates his childhood, comparing it to a family gymnastics performance worthy of Nadia herself.
Life in the court of Matane is unforgiving, and we explore different facets of it (dreams of sovereignty, schoolyard bullying, imagined missions to Russia, poems by Baudelaire), each based around an encounter with a different animal, until the narrator befriends a great horned owl, summons up the courage to let go of the upper bar forever, and makes his glorious escape.
Born in 1970, Eric Dupont lives and works in Montreal. He has published 5 novels with Marchand de feuilles and in France with Éditions du Toucan and Éditions J'ai lu (Flammarion). He is a past winner of Radio-Canada's "Combat des livres" (the equivalent of the CBC's Canada Reads contest), a finalist for the Prix littéraire France-Québec and the Prix des cinq continents, and a winner of the Prix des libraires and the Prix littéraire des collégiens. Songs for the Cold of Heart is his fourth novel and his second to be published in English with QC Fiction. It was a finalist for the Governor General's Award for Translation and the Giller Prize.
"This novel from Dupont ... the first from a new fiction imprint dedicated to publishing `the very best of a new generation of Quebec storytellers in flawless English translation,' lives up to that ambition. ... By turns poignant, playful, and nostalgic, the book evokes '70s Quebec with the quirky but successful device of combining an autobiographical family story with motifs drawn from fable, history, politics and myth. ... Translator McCambridge beautifully captures the joyous top notes and the darker undercurrents of this fascinating voice." (Publishers Weekly)
"Wildly imaginative ... a remarkably sensitive and intelligent coming-of-age story told with an irresistible blend of heartache, humour and magic." (Numéro Cinq)
While on vacation with her family in Valencia, Claire Halde witnesses a shocking event that becomes the catalyst for a protracted downward spiral and a profound personal unravelling as she struggles to come to grips with her role in the incident.
This haunting novel, which unfolds across three timelines set in as many decades, takes the reader on a dark journey through the minds of three women whose pasts, presents, and futures are decided by a single encounter on a scorching summer afternoon.
About the Author
Annie Perreault lives in Montreal and graduated from McGill University with a degree in Russian studies and French literature. The Woman in Valencia is her first novel. It was shortlisted for the Rendez-vous du premier roman and was a finalist for the prestigious Prix Ringuet. Her 2015 collection of short stories L'occupation des jours received an Honourable Mention from the Prix Adrienne-Choquette, and she is a previous winner of the Grand Prix littéraire Radio-Canada for best short story.
About the Translator
Raised in the Laurentian town of Rawdon, Quebec, Ann Marie returned to her native Montreal to pursue a BA in translation at Concordia University and has worked as a commercial translator since 1999. She is the owner of Traduction Proteus Inc., a certified translator, a mentor for aspiring members of her professional order, and a part-time lecturer in translation studies at McGill University's School of Continuing Studies. She earned an MA in translation studies from Concordia in 2018. The Woman in Valencia is her first literary translation.
PRAISE FOR THE WOMAN IN VALENCIA
Translations of French novels by Quebec authors don't always hit the mark in English Canada. The Woman in Valencia does.  These emotions, which many of us have known in life, make the novel and characters very accessible and draw us into the story, if only for a brief time. Perreault certainly has demonstrated an exceptional talent for this genre of fiction-writing, and her translator, Boulanger, impeccable work in rendering the novel into English.  If and when Perreault picks up the pen to write a new novel, I will eagerly read it. For the time being, I will nurture the tender strokes of unhappiness, the shadowy outcomes and the enduring characters of the women in her first novel. (Ian Thomas Shaw, The Ottawa Review of Books)
This was a quick read but certainly a remarkable one. It is a book that reflects the human condition well and makes us want to refer to other readers with glee. Well-crafted and thought-provoking, The Woman in Valencia will certainly be a noted novel of the 2021 season. (Steven Buechler, The Library of Pacific Tranquility)
some of the best-penned psychological insights into a tortured mind as I've come across in some time  I truly savoured reading The Woman in Valencia, being fully drawn into Claire's mind through her thoughts, actions, and inactions. (James M. Fisher, The Miramichi Reader)
A resounding success!  an author to watch out for. (Josée Boileau, Journal de Montréal)
a thought-provoking read, I particularly enjoyed it because of my close association with Valencia. (Tina, Trip Fiction)
A novel in which inaction and avoidance collide, in a masterfully fictionalized retelling of a real-life event experienced by the author. As disturbing as it is moving. (Isabelle Houde, Le Droit)
With pitch-perfect prose and an ear for rhythm, Annie Perreault explores the physical and psychological ramifications of anxiety with intelligence and sensitivity. (Anne-Frédérique Hébert-Dolbec, Le Devoir)
With her finely honed writing style, the author explores the themes of avoidance, powerlessness in the face of incomprehension, and empathy as a middle ground. (Mario Cloutier, La Presse+)
A beautiful novel that deftly addresses the themes of empathy, indifference, and attachment. (Nathalie Roy, Salut Bonjour Weekend)
Alternating between tragedy and light, this debut novel forces the reader to question their own sense of compassion and empathy. (Claudia Larochelle, L'actualité)
A beautiful novel and an engaging style that stays with the reader. (Yvon Paré, Littérature du Québec)
September 2008. Alice is 34, a Quebec artist working in London, England. During her residency there, Lehman Brothers, where her friend Laurence works, goes bankrupt. And that same evening, she attends an auction by Damien Hirst. Gregory Monroe, an art collector and hedge fund manager, is also at the auction-and their lives will never be the same again.
As the financial crisis strikes and two worlds collide, this love story explores the darkest corners of the contemporary art scene, the global economy, and two broken hearts.
Towards the end of the 18th century, twenty-four traders would meet under a tree to buy and sell shares. The tree was located at 68 Wall Street, so called because of a wall that used to mark the northern limits of the colony of New Amsterdam, on the Island of Manhattan.
On May 17, 1792, the twenty-four brokers signed, beneath the tree, the Buttonwood Agreement. This marked the foundation of the New York Stock Exchange, and the birth of Wall Street.
Today, the tree on Wall Street has long since fallen. And the twenty-four traders' transactions, brokered in the shade of a plane tree, have become complex to the point of being almost intangible and immaterial.
Finance has become an abstraction. And it pervades every sphere of our lives. Including contemporary art. Especially contemporary art.
Critics' Choice Award, Quebec Association of Theatre Critics (AQCT): Best Show and Best Text
"I was swept along from Quebec to London to New York, learning about the volatile world of finance and the contemporary art world [...] The relationship between Alice and Greg (which echoes the relationship between art and finance) is intense, tempestuous, and all-too-brief. Entertaining and informative, The Art of the Fall is well worth a read." (James Fisher, The Miramichi Reader)
Virtually every scene reveals the workings of the art world or unpacks an economic episode or principle. [...] The play has the rhythm and complexity of the finest stories, the inventiveness and zaniness of a saga. We can almost never predict how the story will unfold." Le Soleil
"[The Art of the Fall] brings together an impressive collective of creative minds around the themes of art and the economy: are these spheres really so very far removed from one another? Cerebral and dry though the premise might first appear, the result is nevertheless a performance of remarkable depth." Le Devoir