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Talonbooks is grieved to learn of the passing, earlier this week, of beloved and reclusive Quebec author Réjean Ducharme at age 76. His passing was first announced by his French publisher, Éditions Gallimard.
Ducharme’s works – particularly his debut novel L’Avalée des avalés (published in English as The Swallower Swallowed) – influenced the Quebecois zeitgeist during the Quiet Revolution and have maintained their presence in the undercurrents of Quebec culture.
Two of Ducharme’s novels have been published by Talonbooks in English translations by Will Browning: Go Figure (originally published in French in 1994 as Va savoir) and Miss Take (originally published in French – in France, at first – in 1968 as Le nez qui voque), which is now considered a Quebec classic.
Ducharme’s works walk a fine line with impressive balance: they are both culturally subversive and well received. His novels and a play won Governor General’s Awards in 1966, 1973, and 1982; in 2000, he was named Officer of the Order of Quebec; and in 2016, the Quebec government hailed the 1966 publication of The Swallower Swallowed as a “historical event,” an “emblem of the effervescence of Quebec literature.” Ducharme continued writing throughout his life despite his refusal to attend public events honouring his work. He rarely allowed photographs, and since the 1960s he shied away from the media; many think of him still as Quebec’s Salinger.
Also see coverage of Ducharme’s passing in the National Post and other news outlets.
Our little end-of-year present to you is a miniature from M.A.C. Farrant’s delightful collection of very short stories, The World Afloat. Happy Holidays from Talonbooks!
Our Spiritual Lives
We’ve seen stains on tea towels that look like Jesus Christ’s face so we know he exists. And we know that dried seaweed can save the Douglas fir from extinction so we hang dried seaweed from the tree’s branches.Tuesday December 5, 2017 in Meta-Talon
A finalist for the 2006 Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama, In a World Created by a Drunken God has been in steady demand since it was first published 11 years ago. From 2006 until the end of 2017, In a World Created by a Drunken God was in print with its original cover, which showed moving boxes and a flip phone. Now, Talonbooks has reprinted In a World Created by a Drunken God for the fourth time, and it wears a dynamic, new cover …Tuesday September 26, 2017 in Meta-Talon
From Oral to Written is a study of Native literature published in Canada between 1980 and 2010, a catalogue of amazing books that sparked the embers of a dormant voice. Leading Aboriginal author Tomson Highway surveys the first wave of Native writers published in Canada, highlighting the most gifted authors and the best stories they have told, offering non-Native readers access to reconciliation and understanding, and at the same time engendering among Native readers pride in a stellar body of work. On Meta-Talon, read a selection from Highway’s prologue.Thursday August 10, 2017 in Meta-Talon
August 12 is Buy a Quebec Book Day – and have we got books for you! Browse our list of 12 august and recently published Quebec books – any of which we would, of course, recommend. Read the list, and then get out to your local bookstore this Saturday and show la belle province some literary love!
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF); and the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council for our publishing activities.