The Douglas Notebooks by Christine Eddie
A Fable

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...one struggles to understand how viewing the fable as a movie enhances its message. It seems a bit of a disconnect. That said, Eddie is an immensely gifted writer (the book was originally written in French in 2007, and has been translated by Sheila Fischman) who balances her succinct style with a poetic sensibility.
-National Post arts

Synopsis

Roman was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. At 18, he leaves his family for a home in the forest, learning to live off the land rather than his family’s wealth. Éléna flees a house of blood and mayhem, taking refuge in a monastery and later in the rustic village of Rivière-aux-Oies. One day, while walking in the woods, Éléna hears the melody of a clarinet and comes across Roman, who calls himself Starling and whom Éléna later renames Douglas, for the strongest and most spectacular of trees. Later a child named Rose is born. Fade to black. When the story takes up again, Douglas has returned to the forest, Rose is in the village under the care of others, and Éléna is gone. From these disparate threads, Christine Eddie tenderly weaves a fable for our time and for all times. As the years pass, the story broadens to capture others in its elegant web — a doctor with a bruised heart, a pharmacist who may be a witch, and a teacher with dark secrets. Together they raise this child with the mysterious heritage, transforming this story into an ode to friendship and family, a sonnet on our relationship with nature, and an elegy to love and passion. The Douglas Notebooks was originally published in French as Les carnets de Douglas. This edition was translated by Sheila Fischman.
 

About Christine Eddie

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Christine Eddie was born in France, grew up in New Brunswick, and now lives in Quebec. The Douglas Notebooks, her first novel, won the 2008 Prix France-Quebec, the 2009 Prix Senghor du Premier Roman francophone, and the 2010 Prix du Club des Irrésistables. SHEILA FISCHMAN has translated over fifty works of Quebec literature into English. She was the recipient of the Felix-Antoine Savard prize for her translations in 1989 and 1990 and has twice won the Governor General's Award. She lives in Montreal.
 
Published February 26, 2013 by Goose Lane Editions. 178 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Douglas Notebooks
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National Post arts

Good
Reviewed by Evan Davies on Apr 19 2013

Christine Eddie has done well with this novel — it’s earned several prizes, including the 2008 Prix France-Québec, the 2009 Prix Senghor du Premier Roman francophone and the 2010 Prix du Club des Irrésistibles. And rightfully so.

Read Full Review of The Douglas Notebooks: A Fable | See more reviews from National Post arts

National Post arts

Good
Reviewed by Evan Davies on Apr 19 2013

...one struggles to understand how viewing the fable as a movie enhances its message. It seems a bit of a disconnect. That said, Eddie is an immensely gifted writer (the book was originally written in French in 2007, and has been translated by Sheila Fischman) who balances her succinct style with a poetic sensibility.

Read Full Review of The Douglas Notebooks: A Fable | See more reviews from National Post arts

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