The Black NotebookFront Cover

ISBN: 9780889225435 | paperback / softback

$19.95 | 224 pages | Pub. Date: 2006
6.00 W × 9.00 H × 1 D inches
Fiction | Backlist | Bisac: FIC019000
ISBN 13: 9780889225435 | Rights: WORLD

In the heart of the Latin Quarter, meeting place of marginal characters of all sorts, Céline Poulin works the night shift at a cheap and popular restaurant, Le Sélect, serving hamburger platters and spaghetti and meatballs to student misfits, transvestites, hookers and queens from the Main—Montreal’s disreputable Boulevard Saint-Laurent. Hanging out with a theatre company in her off hours, Céline sees opening before her a world where it is not only possible, but even desirable to pretend. When the director offers her a role in The Trojan Women, the die is cast.

The Black Notebook is Céline’s diary, her account of her trials and tribulations, her expectations and her cruel disappointments, because this young waitress at Le Sélect has her own dramatic story to tell, even if only to herself: Céline is a midget.

From the theatre of Euripides to the theatre of Montreal’s Main, Michel Tremblay—our Balzac—creates and gives voice to some astonishing new characters in this first of a new series of novels. For the characters of The Black Notebook, the first in this trilogy, life is a comedy that barely conceals the cruel and pitiless tragedy of the everyday. With a transcendent eloquence and compassion, Michel Tremblay celebrates how it is possible for Céline to embrace her difference and to flourish—despite that difference, or perhaps, because of it.

“The themes dear to Michel Tremblay can be found in this novel: humiliation, marginality, parent-child relationships, the difficulty of being different … ”
Nuit blanche

By Michel Tremblay

One of the most produced and the most prominent playwrights in the history of Canadian theatre, Michel Tremblay has received countless prestigious honours and accolades. His dramatic, literary and autobiographical works have long enjoyed remarkable international popularity, including translations of his plays that have achieved huge success in Europe, the Americas and the Middle East.

Awards and Recognition*
Prix du Grand (2009) La Traversée de la ville (Leméac Editeur Inc.)
Blue Metropolis International Literary Grand Prix (2006)
Globe and Mail Top 100 Books (2003) Birth of a Bookworm
Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play (2000) For the Pleasure of Seeing Her Again
Chalmers Awards (1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1986, 1989, 2000)
Governor General’s Performing Arts Award (1999)
Molson Prize for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts (1994)
Louis-Hémon Prize (1994)
Montreal Book Fair Grand Public Prize (1994)
Banff Centre National Award (1992)
Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters of France (1991)
Chevalier of the Order of Quebec (1990)
San Francisco Lesbian and Gay Festival Long-Standing Public Service Award (1989)
CBC Anik Prize (1988)
Athanase-David Lifetime Achievement Prize (1988)
Quebec-Paris Prize (1985)
Chevalier of Arts and Letters of France (1984).

Read more about Michel Tremblay


Translated by Sheila Fischman

Born in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Sheila Fischman was raised in Ontario and is a graduate of the University of Toronto. She is a founding member of the Literary Translators’ Association of Canada and has also been a columnist for the Globe and Mail and Montreal Gazette, a broadcaster with CBC Radio, and literary editor of the Montreal Star. She now devotes herself full time to literary translation, specializing in contemporary Quebec fiction, and has translated more than 125 Quebec novels by, among others, Michel Tremblay, Jacques Poulin, Anne Hébert, François Gravel, Marie-Claire Blais, and Roch Carrier.

Read more about Sheila Fischman


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news | 2017-05-05
50 years since Expo 67, and a book bundle to celebrate!

…but absolutely charming trilogy of novels. The Black Notebook , The Red Notebook , and The Blue Notebook take … Quill and Quire featured these new covers.) The Black Notebook and The Red Notebook ebooks have already been …


news | 2017-03-02
Talon book design in the press

…Notebook series (designed by Chloë Filson). The Black Notebook , The Red Notebook , and The Blue Notebook are …


news | 2010-10-14
Our Fall Sale: The Three Michel Tremblay Notebook Titles for $50

…Talonbooks is offering for a limited time The Black Notebook, The Red Notebook, and The Blue Notebook for $50 …