This is a great book written by a Quebec author. Jacques Poulin has a mastery of language that I haven’t seen for a long time. His prose is poetic, and many times as I read the story I felt as if I was sitting right next to the author.
The story is also very moving. It focuses on many different themes such as friendship, family, and how people who hardly know each other at first could become so close and so important to one another. The other theme in the book is brotherly and sisterly love.
The story is about Jimmy who has no roots. He knows that he wants to be a writer but he does not know how. He needs to learn and gain a lot of experience before he can write. So, Jack becomes his mentor. He owns a bookstore in Quebec City where he lives and works at the university.
To learn how to write, Jimmy goes to Paris to walk in the footsteps of Hemingway and Joyce. However, when Jack becomes ill, he is asked to return to Quebec to take care of him. Jack has Alzheimer’s. He seems to be losing his faculties more and more as time goes on. He also intends to take his own life when he feels that he has become a burden to others.
This book will be enjoyed by anyone who loves a great story and a great message set in a place that seems to resonate with everyone.
Reviewed by Irene S. Roth
Rating: 5 stars