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Monday March 29, 2010 in Books
Singularly obsessed with his all-consuming passion for Anna, the object of his adolescent desire, the photographer Christophe Langelier is beside himself. Ten years ago, he failed the test of eating a bicycle for her as proof of his love and devotion. Since then, he has created a photographic catalogue of his only model, complete with a glossary, an “Anna-lexique,” in which the darkness and the light of her idealized being have shaded his language, even as her ubiquitous image has crowded out his own identity.
Desperate to escape his unrequited love for Anna, Christophe flees to the Island of Women off the coast of Mexico. There, he sacrifices his former self and begins his transformation from a man possessed to a man confused.
The Bicycle Eater is a comic, surrealist novel of metamorphosis unleashed by hopeless desire, a riotous, colourful burlesque where nothing and no one remain what they seem.
ISBN 13: 9780889225282 | ISBN 10: 889225281
6 W x 9 H x 1 D inches | 224 pages
$19.95 CAN / $17.95 US
Backlist | Fiction | Bisac: FIC019000
QUOTES OF NOTE
"Larry Tremblay’s broad experience as a playwright is evident in The Bicycle Eater, a novel which breathes theatricality. Things and people are never quite what they seem in this gender-bending ride through the topsy-turvy tunnels of 27-year-old photographer Christophe Langelier’s obsession with Anna … This is also a good book for anyone who appreciates the surreal. There is something poetic about the way the narrative slips back and forth as easily as a dream, transcending the limits of linear thinking. Some of the monologues delivered by Tremblay’s quirky cast of characters have words flooding the page in a sparkling stream of consciousness, gushing with metaphysical musings. And what gorgeous images are rendered."
— Montreal Review of Books
"The most memorable novel I’ve read lately … I found it an eerily seductive tale of desire and transformation. Tremblay’s magical language leads us through consumptive anguish, into surreal burlesque, onward to a fierce reality."
— Christopher Willard, novelist and art critic (quoted in the Calgary Herald and Ottawa Citizen)
"Extravagance drives this book, and by sheer tenacity finally vaults it beyond the range of critical harping … Tremblay’s story unfolds in paroxysms of the improbable, straddling dreamland and reality."
— Globe and Mail
"A superb translation of Larry Tremblay’s wonderfully surreal 2002 novel."
"Sheila Fischman demonstrates her skill and creativity in rendering this intense work, full of wordplay and inventiveness. Her translation consistently maintains the author’s distinctive humour and intellectual detachment."
— 2006 Governor General’s Literary Awards Jury
Finalist for the 2006 Governor General’s Literary Award for Translation
About the ContributorsLarry Tremblay
Larry Tremblay is a writer, director, actor and specialist in Kathakali, an elaborate dance theatre form which he has studied on numerous trips to India. He has published twenty books as a playwright, poet, novelist and essayist. The recent publication of Talking Bodies (Talonbooks, 2001) brought together four of his plays in English translation.Sheila Fischman
Born in Saskatchewan, Sheila Fischman is a member of the Order of Canada and has a doctorate from the University of Waterloo.
A two-time Governor General’s Award winner, Fischman has translated from French to English more than a hundred novels by such prominent Quebec writers as Michel Tremblay, Jacques Poulin, Anne Hébert, François Gravel, Marie-Claire Blais and Roch Carrier.
In 2008, Fischman was awarded the prestigious Molson Prize for her outstanding contributions to Canadian literature.
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Government of Canada through the Book Publishing Industry Development Program; and the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council for our publishing activities.